It’s that time of year when we start squaring off our summer plans. My summer is looking a bit more lax then usual. I have a bunch of trips I’m planning to take, but aside from a couple, I don’t have dates picked out yet. That’s partially by design. Last summer included 8 weddings, a bachelor party, and a 10 day trip to Ireland. I felt like I was almost scheduled down to the last minute. I like concrete plans, but it got to the point that I felt nothing could be done on the fly, or spontaneously. Summer is made to be spontaneous. I want to give myself a bit more free time this summer. I also spent a boatload of money last summer, and want to be a bit more frugal this time around. I wouldn’t mind a few more lazy backyard days. I had hardly any last summer.
Still, stuff has crept up. I’m doing the Devil’s Path over Memorial Day weekend. I have a good friend’s 30th the 1st weekend of June, but am returning to the Catskills with my brother and college buddies the weekend after that The first weekend of August my brother and I are heading to New Hampshire to conquer to Presidential Traverse, and hope knock out a few more training hikes in between. I’m also planning on visiting the Narragansett Brewery outside Providence RI (it was my Christmas gift to my father), and have promised my cousin to spend a weekend in Annapolis (we’ve been talking about that for 2 years now), and that’s not including the requisite Sea Isle trip. I have tentative plans to finally visit the PA Grand Canyon and Cherry Springs State Park, and want to visit the north shore of Long Island, where one of my good friend’s dad works at a brewery. Then there’s some daytrips. And work and normal living, obviously. Despite keeping it lazy, and spontaneous, my summer is already looking somewhat full. As always, there’s tons of things I’d love to do now that the weather is nice, but just don’t think I’ll have time to. Here are the top ones. Maybe you’ll have the time to check a few of these out.
- Hickory Run State Park- Hickory Run State Park is just under an hour drive south of me in the Poconos, and is supposed to have solid hiking according to one of my coworkers. Highlights include a waterfall swimming hole and boulder field.
- Western Side of Seneca Lake- I had an amazing time last time I went up to the Finger Lakes, and have been dying to return. In particular, I’d like to do a brewery tour on the western side of Seneca Lake. I really want to visit Climbing Bines Hop Farm and Gael Brewing, and end with a hike at Watkins Glen.
- Upper Delaware Scenic Byway– I’ve dabbled in portions of the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway, but never driven the whole thing from Port Jervis to Hancock, which has been on my bucket-list for a while.
- Ottawa- Not on a ton of travel lists, right? Well here me out. I first got turned onto Ottawa because it has a hostel inside an old jail. That’s legit. It also is the Canadian capital, a four hour straight-shot car ride from Scranton, and has a great brewery scene. Plus, all you have to do is cross the river via footbridge for Quebec and its European flair (seriously, Quebec feels more like a foreign country then Ireland, England, or Iceland, aka the only foreign countries besides Canada I’ve been to).
- Toronto- I’ve been wanting to visit Toronto for a while. Again, it’s about a four hour drive, and the summer seems ideal since it’s lakeside.
- Nantucket- I love New England in the summer, and I’m obsessed with anything Cape Cod-esque. I’ve been to Martha’s Vineyard twice, but never Nantucket, and every summer say I’m going to visit.
- Ohiopyle- I spent a couple hours at Ohiopyle a few summers back. I want to spend a long weekend there.
- Pinnacle Trail Loop- I’ve seen various folks on social media tackle this portion of the Appalachian Trail in central PA. I’ve never done any portions of the Appalachian trail, and this seems about as good time as any.
- Hatchet Throwing in New Jersey- The place is called Stumpy’s Hatchet House. They teach you how to throw hatchets. What more can you ask for?
- Presque Isle State Park- Presque Isle State Park can give you a beach vacation in PA. Plus, I want to get to Erie.