Life in New York

While camping in the Finger Lakes National Forest in New York, I woke up around 5:30 a.m. to loud noises about 200 yards away. As the sounds grew louder, I realized they were chants, and my heart started racing.

I was alone in my tent, and I prepared for an unknown event that seemed to be approaching my campsite. Without cell service, I braced myself. The noise intensified and drew closer, and I soon saw a dozen small lights moving up and down, partially obscured by the thick foliage between my campsite and the source of the noise.

I quickly slipped out of my sleeping bag, put on my boots, and, despite the 40-degree misty weather, stepped out of my tent in just my boxers. I hurried to find a discreet location to observe the movement.

The lights were moving along a forest service road and coming closer. As the group approached, the earlier chants became clearer. Then, as they neared, their lights illuminated me as I stood in boots and boxers.

The group turned out to be a local National Guard unit on a morning run.

After a brief wave to the group, I returned to my tent, feeling cold and soaked but relieved. I settled back in for a few more hours of sleep, reassured that my campsite was safe.

Finger Lakes National Forest
Finger Lakes National Forest

During much of October, I explored New York state, traveling the backroads and camping in my Subaru or a tent. The autumn landscape was stunning, and I relished every moment of the vibrant fall colors and fresh apple cider. Along the way, I discovered charming abandoned houses, such as a red-sided one in the Town of Hector, which had been vacant for over ten years. Upon closer examination, I noted extensive termite damage compromising some of the structural components of the house. The western facade had bowed outward considerably, and inside, many furnishings, paintings, and kitchen appliances remained in place.

Nearby Middle Road, I also found an abandoned fruit-packing house once connected to the Syracuse, Geneva & Corning Railway in Burdett. Adjacent to it was a similarly designed residence that had been part of the packing house at one point.

Driving through Connecticut Hills and other nearby state forests, I encountered endless vistas, tree-lined dirt roads, and the radiant hues of fall.

Occasionally, I stumbled upon abandoned buildings, though they were rare in this area. Most were either restored or actively used. Near Dryden, I found a once-beautiful building that had been unused for some time.

Abandoned residence near Dryden, New York
Abandoned residence near Dryden, New York

My trip to New York state offered me the chance to explore its natural beauty and history, leaving me with a renewed sense of appreciation for the region. I look forward to sharing more about my adventures and discoveries in future updates.


Add Yours →

What would you recommend as the best restorable, inhabitable residence which could be purchased for a reasonable price in the Finger Lakes/upstate New York area? Would you or someone you refer contact me? Lee Sisco 202 251 3367 cell.

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