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Finger Lakes Road Biking

This is a collection of routes around Ithaca that club members have biked on and found interesting enough to note. This is by no means exhaustive, and is just a handy guide for people with a road bike wondering where to go around Ithaca. Also check out:

Here are some rides we've done, logged at ridewithgps.com (with pictures!):

Taughannock Falls

A 23 mile loop that takes you to the Falls overlook on top of Taughannock Falls from The Commons. Google maps does not know about the parking lot at the overlook, so it doesn't let you make a U-turn. Subtract 1.7 miles from whatever the link shows.

  1. Head west on W State St toward N Geneva St - 0.5 mi
  2. Turn right at N Meadow St/RT-13 N/RT-34 N/RT-96 N - 0.1 mi
  3. Turn left at W Buffalo St/RT-89/RT-96 - 0.2 mi
  4. Turn right at RT-89/Taughannock Blvd - 7.5 mi
  5. Turn left at Agard Rd - 0.7 mi
  6. Slight right at Willow Creek Rd - 1.2 mi
  7. Turn left at Gorge Rd - 1.0 mi
  8. Turn right at Jacksonville Rd - 0.3 mi
  9. Turn right at Taughannock Park Rd - 0.5 mi
  10. Stop and look at the waterfall, take pictures, chill out...
  11. Turn left at Taughannock Park Rd - 0.5 mi
  12. Turn left at Jacksonville Rd - 0.6 mi
  13. Turn left at Agard Rd - 1.4 mi
  14. Turn right at Willow Creek Rd - 0.7 mi
  15. Turn left at Kraft Rd - 338 ft
  16. Turn right at Dubois Rd - 1.8 mi
  17. Turn left at Perry City Rd - 0.8 mi
  18. Slight right at RT-89/Taughannock Blvd - 4.5 mi
  19. Turn left at W Buffalo St/RT-89/RT-96 Continue to follow W Buffalo St - 0.7 mi
  20. Turn right at Cayuga St N/N Cayuga St - 0.1 mi

If you're hungry, instead of continuing on Dubois Rd on the way back, turn right on Krum's Corners Rd after about 0.2 miles on Dubois Rd. Keep riding until you reach RT-96, turn left to go south. Immediately to your left you will see a pizzeria at the corner of RT-96 and Wilkins Rd. have pizza, then take Wilkins Rd. Turn right at Dubois Rd, then left on Glenwood Heights Rd to get back on RT-89. Continue south.

Cayuga Lake Creamery

A 37 mile loop from The Commons that takes you to Cayuga Lake Creamery in Interlaken for some creamy home-made ice-cream. They even have seasonal flavors! For those of you who don't like ice-cream but want to ride anyway, they also have personal pizzas and finger foods.

  1. Head west on W State St toward N Geneva St - 0.5 mi
  2. Turn right at N Meadow St/RT-13 N/RT-34 N/RT-96 N - 0.1 mi
  3. Turn left at W Buffalo St/RT-89/RT-96 - 0.2 mi
  4. Turn right at RT-89/Taughannock Blvd - 4.2 mi
  5. Slight right at Maplewood Rd - 0.5 mi
  6. Turn right to stay on Maplewood Rd - 0.5 mi
  7. Slight right at RT-89/Taughannock Blvd Continue to follow RT-89 - 8.3 mi
  8. Turn right at Covert Cottage Rd - 0.5 mi
  9. Continue on Lone Retreat Rd - 2.2 mi
  10. Lone Retreat Rd turns slightly right and becomes Bergen Beach Rd - 0.1 mi
  11. Turn right to stay on Bergen Beach Rd - 0.1 mi
  12. Continue on Holton Beach Rd - 0.8 mi
  13. Turn right at RT-89 - 0.4 mi
  14. Turn left at CR-141B - 0.2 mi
  15. Turn left at Arden Rd - 1.5 mi
  16. Turn left at RT-96 - 15.6 mi
  17. Continue on W Buffalo St - 0.5 mi
  18. Turn right at Cayuga St N/N Cayuga St Continue to follow Cayuga St N - 0.2 mi

King Ferry and Salmon Creek

A 42 mile loop starting and ending on The Commons, which takes you to the King Ferry winery, the Triangle Restaurant (where you can have homemade desserts and several other high-calorie food) and Ludlowville Falls. There is a steep and curvy downhill along Hill Rd, followed by a scenic 5 mile ride along Salmon Creek.

  1. Head north on N Aurora St toward RT-79 W/E Seneca St - 0.9 mi
  2. Turn left at Lincoln St E/E Lincoln St - 66 ft
  3. Turn right at N Aurora St - 262 ft
  4. Turn right at E Falls St - 0.1 mi
  5. Turn left at Lake St - 0.3 mi
  6. Continue on E Shore Dr - 0.2 mi
  7. Slight right at Renwick Dr - 374 ft
  8. Turn right to stay on Renwick Dr - 0.1 mi
  9. Turn left to stay on Renwick Dr - 0.4 mi
  10. Continue on N Sunset Dr - 1.0 mi
  11. Turn left at Cayuga Heights Rd - 1.6 mi
  12. Turn right at RT-34/E Shore Dr - 2.4 mi
  13. Turn left at Drake Rd - 1.3 mi
  14. Turn left at Ridge Rd/RT-34B - 7.7 mi
  15. Slight left at Lake Ridge Rd - 1.2 mi
  16. Continue on Lake Rd - 2.9 mi
    1. You can stop at King Ferry winery (at 2.5 mi) for filling your water bottle and maybe taste some wines as well (6 tastes for $1)
    2. Or, you can keep going at stop at the Triangle Restaurant (where you get on RT-90) for food and water
  17. Turn right at Clearview Rd - 0.1 mi
  18. Slight right at RT-90 - 2.7 mi
  19. Turn right at Bartnick Rd - 2.0 mi
  20. Turn left at Hill Rd - 1.6 mi (long, curvy, gravelly downhill — let go of the brakes if you dare, but be prepared for a crash)
  21. Turn right at Indian Field Rd - 0.8 mi
  22. Continue on Salmon Creek Rd - 5.2 mi
  23. Turn left at Ludlowville Rd - 279 ft
  24. Turn right to stay on Ludlowville Rd - 0.3 mi
    1. Or, you can go straight for another 100 ft and veer right to reach the Ludlowville Falls overlook (there are no signs)
    2. Once you're in the grassy area, to the right is a muddy track for going down to the bottom (it's totally worth it!)
  25. Turn left at Brickyard Rd - 0.8 mi
  26. Turn left at Ridge Rd/RT-34B - 1.0 mi
  27. Turn right at RT-34/E Shore Dr - 3.2 mi
  28. Turn left at Cayuga Heights Rd - 3.1 mi
  29. Continue on Stewart Ave - 0.5 mi
  30. Turn right at Willard Way - 459 ft
  31. Slight left at University Ave - 0.5 mi
  32. Slight left at Linn St - 236 ft
  33. Turn right at E Court St - 0.2 mi
  34. Turn left at Cayuga St N/N Cayuga St - 0.2 mi

Watkins Glen

Keuka Lake loop

A 57 mile loop which starts and ends in Hammondsport, NY. Cars can be parked on almost any street except Main St. Right next to the lake on Water St, near the boat launching piers, there is a restroom and dressing room facility. There are two very good cafes/restaurants on the west side of the lake, Lakefront and Waterfront restaurants (5 mi and 8 mi north of Hammondsport). On the eastern tip of the Y, there is a place with ice cream, tacos and excellent hot dogs.

  1. Head east on Mill St toward Lake St - 449 ft
  2. Turn right at Lake St - 161 ft
  3. Lake St turns slightly left and becomes Water St - 0.2 mi
  4. Sharp right at RT-54A - 14.0 mi
  5. Turn right to stay on RT-54A - 1.3 mi
  6. Turn right at Pepper Rd - 0.3 mi
  7. Turn right at W Bluff Dr - 0.1 mi
  8. Turn right to stay on W Bluff Dr - 14.8 mi
  9. Continue on Lake Ave - 0.6 mi
  10. Turn right at Keuka Park Rd - 0.4 mi
  11. Turn right at CR-21/W Lake Rd Continue to follow CR-21 - 2.0 mi
  12. Turn right at RT-54A - 1.4 mi
  13. Turn right at Liberty St/RT-14A - 0.3 mi
  14. Turn right at Lake St/RT-54 - 3.6 mi
  15. Slight right at Lower E Lake Rd - 1.7 mi
  16. Continue on E Lake Rd - 3.1 mi
  17. Slight right to stay on E Lake Rd - 2.1 mi
  18. Slight right to stay on E Lake Rd - 1.8 mi
  19. Continue on Keuka Village Rd - 0.1 mi
  20. Slight right at RT-54 - 1.9 mi
  21. Turn right at Hines Rd/E Lake Rd Continue to follow E Lake Rd - 4.2 mi
  22. Slight right at RT-54 - 0.2 mi
  23. Slight right at S Lake Rd - 1.4 mi
  24. Slight right at RT-54 - 0.7 mi
  25. Turn right at RT-54A - 0.4 mi
  26. Turn right at Liberty St - 0.1 mi

The bluff (inside of the Y) looks the most interesting on the map but is the most boring on a bicycle. You can also do a 44 mile loop avoiding the bluff.

  1. Head west on Mill St - 154 ft
  2. Continue on Liberty St - 0.2 mi
  3. Turn left at RT-54A - 0.4 mi
  4. Turn left at RT-54 - 16.3 mi
  5. Turn left at G Fullagar Rd - 433 ft
  6. Turn right at Lower E Lake Rd - 0.8 mi
  7. Slight left at E Lake Rd/RT-54 - 3.6 mi
  8. Turn left at Liberty St/RT-14A - 0.3 mi
  9. Turn left at Elm St/RT-54A Continue to follow RT-54A - 7.5 mi
  10. Turn left at Main St/RT-54A Continue to follow RT-54A - 14.2 mi
  11. Turn left at Mechanic St - 0.2 mi
  12. Turn left at Liberty St - 141 ft

Cayuga Lake loop

Skaneateles and Otisco lakes loop

A 40 mile loop that traverses a figure eight starting and ending in the town of Skaneateles. Follow green signs to town parking lots ($2 for the day). The route starts on W Genesee St, anywhere between the Sherwood Inn and Blue Water grill. Halfway through the route brings you back to Skaneateles, where there are several food options: sub & pizza at Valentine's, sit-down lunch at Blue Water, desserts & ice-cream at Sugarwater Cafe, or sandwiches & soup at the Skaneateles Bakery.

Skaneateles lake has the clearest water of all the finger lakes, as a quick jaunt on the fishing pier should convince you. Otisco is pretty small and usually filled with weeds. Both lakes have the problem that roads run close to it only on the northern half, hence the figure eight design of this route.

  1. Head northeast on W Genesee St/US-20 toward Jordan St - 0.4 mi
  2. Turn left at Onondaga St - 0.6 mi
  3. Continue on CR-41/New Seneca Turnpike - 2.0 mi
  4. Turn right at Rickard Rd - 0.6 mi
  5. Turn left toward Masters Rd - 112 ft (you will not see a road sign for Master's Rd coming south, watch out for Lee Mulroy Rd and take a left immediately after that)
  6. Turn left at Masters Rd - 1.2 mi
  7. Turn right at Williams Rd - 1.4 mi
  8. Slight right at RT-174 - 2.2 mi
  9. Turn right to stay on RT-174 - 3.2 mi (to see the east side of Otisco, defer turning right here and instead go down Otisco Valley Rd for ~5 miles and make a U-turn to get back on RT-174)
  10. Continue on Eibert Rd - 0.7 mi
  11. Turn right at Shamrock Rd - 3.1 mi
  12. Turn left at Coon Hill Rd - 1.9 mi
  13. Turn right at E Lake Rd/RT-41 - 2.0 mi
  14. Turn left at E Genesee St/US-20 - 0.8 mi
  15. Turn left at W Lake St - 6.8 mi (W Lake St turns into W Lake Rd after the golf course, which merges into RT-41A and keeps its name)
  16. Turn right at Heifer St - 1.4 mi
  17. Slight right at Mandana Rd/RT-38A Continue to follow RT-38A - 2.1 mi
  18. Turn right at North Rd - 3.4 mi
  19. Turn right at Baptist Corner Rd/Baptist Corners Rd Continue to follow Baptist Corners Rd - 0.8 mi
  20. Turn left at Benson Rd - 0.4 mi
  21. Turn left at County Line Rd - 2.7 mi
    1. The road sign says Giles Rd
    2. On some Sundays and Saturdays, polo is played at the polo ground on Andrews Rd — bikes get in for free. Look for it halfway along County Line Rd to the right.
  22. Turn right at W Genesee St Rd/US-20 - 1.4 mi

Willseyville loop

A 37 mile loop to Willseyville starting from Japes and returning to The Commons. There isn't much food to be had along the way, so if you think you might get hungry, carry food. The highlight of this route is the part going south along Coddington Rd, which is ideal for cycling (if only it were better paved!) and surrounded by pretty hills.

  1. Head southwest on Thurston Ave toward Forest Home Dr - 246 ft
  2. Continue on East Ave - 0.4 mi
  3. Turn left at Campus Rd - 0.7 mi
  4. Turn right at Judd Falls Rd - 0.1 mi
  5. Turn right at Dryden Rd/RT-366 - 259 ft
  6. Turn left at Pine Tree Rd - 1.6 mi
  7. Turn left at RT-79/Slaterville Rd - 2.4 mi
  8. Turn right at Brooktondale Rd - 1.0 mi
  9. Turn right at Middaugh Rd - 1.3 mi
  10. Turn left at Coddington Rd - 6.4 mi
  11. Turn left at Willseyville Rd - 0.4 mi
  12. Turn right at Ithaca Rd/RT-96B Continue to follow RT-96B - 7.2 mi
  13. Turn left at Bald Hill Rd - 2.7 mi (this will take you next to Jennings Pond, the source of Buttermilk Creek)
  14. Turn right at Station Rd - 1.7 mi
  15. Turn right at W Danby Rd/RT-34/RT-96 Continue to follow RT-34/RT-96 - 9.9 mi
  16. Turn right at W State St - 0.5 mi

Jennings Pond is pretty mucky and weedy, with the shores thickly strewn with goose and dog poop — it's not much of a sightseeing spot. So you can avoid Jennings Pond by following a shorter 28 mile loop. This has an awesome downhill towards the end where pretty much any road bike and most hybrids will break the official speed limit!

  1. Head southwest on Thurston Ave toward Forest Home Dr - 246 ft
  2. Continue on East Ave - 0.4 mi
  3. Turn left at Campus Rd - 0.7 mi
  4. Turn right at Judd Falls Rd - 0.1 mi
  5. Turn right at Dryden Rd/RT-366 - 259 ft
  6. Turn left at Pine Tree Rd - 1.6 mi
  7. Turn left at RT-79/Slaterville Rd - 2.4 mi
  8. Turn right at Brooktondale Rd - 1.0 mi
  9. Turn right at Middaugh Rd - 1.3 mi
  10. Turn left at Coddington Rd - 6.4 mi
  11. Turn left at Willseyville Rd - 0.4 mi
  12. Turn right at Ithaca Rd/RT-96B Continue to follow RT-96B - 13.3 mi
  13. Continue on S Aurora St - 0.1 mi