- Cortland County, in the heart of New York
- Favorite Points:
The Experience Cortland GeoTour will take you to the lesser known spots throughout Cortland County, New York.
Known for rolling hills, gorges, and bird-watching, Cortland County is worth more than just a day trip. In the spring and summer, visitors can stop for a mid-day plunge at one of the many swimming holes and spend the afternoon exploring local vineyards. In the fall, the forests come alive with autumn colors, the apples are ripe for picking, and the hot apple cider is supreme. Planning a trip for winter? Pack your skis and plan to spend a day at a nearby ski resort.
“Say yes or I jump!” Those could have been Hannah’s last words, but they weren’t. Isaac Bloomer dropped to his knee below the precipice over which Hannah’s stump leaned. Right then and there Isaac proposed marriage to save the poor girl’s life. At least that’s how the early 19th-century tale goes, and it very well may be true. Town records show that Hannah Towbridge of Gridley Hollow and Isaac Bloomer were married and likely lived an abundant pioneer farm life. Twentieth century locals embraced and reported the legend of Hannah’s Stump, as well as the good berry picking and camping that could be found at the base of the cliff and adjunct to the winding road and stream. The road was eventually straightened and the physical location of Hannah’s stump vanished to progress. Regardless, if a geocacher looks upstream through the new bridge and to the stone embankment, one might conjure up the essence of Hannah’s Stump.
This scenic hamlet includes the original home of The Glen Haven School and Public Library. In the early days, a large resort hotel attracted visitors arriving on the southern end of Skaneateles Lake by steamboat. The school was the last functioning one-room schoolhouse in Cortland County. Down the road and nearby this geocache one can find the Fair Haven Marina, the Glen Haven Inn, and some excellent fishing. Grout Brook, which flows into the south end of Skaneateles Lake, is a premier rainbow trout fishing spot, especially in early spring when trout head upstream to spawn. Bring a canoe, fishing pole, your curiosity, and perhaps dinner money to enjoy this “secret” hideaway.
This geocache locale shares views of the town ball field, the local cemetery, old Route 26, town hall, and the vacant spot that was once the legendary landmark Brown Beaver Inn. Excellent fishing can be found nearby on the Otselic River. The Willet Ball Field grandstand was built in the early 1940s from salvaged lumber from the old icehouse at the former Reed Ice Cream Plant. The hunt for this geocache required climbing the actual grandstand.
The Crossroads is the location of the Town Hall, a lovely park with picnic tables, a basketball court, and a perfect old time swimming hole. Bring your swim gear (or not).
Amish farmers can be seen on a summer day working the fields the way the original settlers would. They are the most recent immigrants to the area and are commonly seen riding their horses and buggies. If it’s laundry day, a drive down the road past one Amish farm will yield a wonderful display of dungarees of all sizes arranged by size on an endless clothesline.
Find all 20 caches, fill in your map, and you earn an official Experience Cortland GeoTour hat and Cortland County pin!
What geocachers are saying
We knew so little of this region before the GeoTour, but now we feel like we’ve been in every nook and cranny of Cortland County. This GeoTour exposed us to the beauty of this part of New York State and the Finger Lakes Region. — ajlepel
Loved the story surrounding the location and the container was brilliant. Great use of the space and resources. — Fur007
Traveled to Cortland County do the Geotour. We really enjoyed this series and due to all of them being quick stop and grabs it was a great thing to do for the kids. It took us about 8 hours but that was our time with stops for visits, food, and gas along with a few other caches in the area. Due to us being there on a Sunday, most places to visit were closed but it also made for a very quiet/relaxing day. — 0;)Angel
The Experience Cortland GeoTour started in 2012 and is still popular among geocachers today. People have traveled from neighboring counties and states to find all 20 caches. The tour is also an opportunity for locals to rediscover hidden spots. Along the way you’ll pass local favorites like a farmer’s market, vegetable stand, drive-in, and distillery, making the Experience Cortland GeoTour worthy of more than just a one-day adventure.
Find out more about the Experience Cortland GeoTour here.
Note: All the above information was provided by the GeoTour host. Copy has been edited by Geocaching HQ.