Vineyards and Views from the Finger Lakes
by Brenda Ruby
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Though the mid-Atlantic has many great areas to ride with varied terrain, all within a short drive, sometimes you just want to get away. But not for too long, because you don't want to burn all your vacation time. And not so far you'd have to fly, because flying with bikes certainly complicates things.
And speaking of minimizing complications, you don't have much time to do a ton of research or planning. But you still really, really want to get AWAY. Is a quick getaway with plenty of established bike routes too much to hope for?
It's a tall order, but the answer lies a mere five- to six-hour drive away in the Finger Lakes region of New York. With beautiful scenery that spans farmlands to mountain lakes and water-carved gorges, postcard-perfect small towns, more wineries than you could possibly visit, and a bit of culture along the way, this could be the perfect area for not just one, but many mini-vacations.
Having heard a few enticing things about this area (cool in the summer while DC bakes!), my only knowledge about terrain came from past participants of the popular Bon Ton Roulet ride that runs every summer--and the word was...hilly!
While Bon Ton is a good deal and a fine option for exploring this vast area, if you don't have time for a seven-day tour, you can easily create a trip catered to your interests, skill-level, and time-frame.