Tag Archives: Upstate New York

The Enchanted Mountains of Cattaraugus County in Western New York!

Contributed by Cattaraugus County Tourism

Spring is the best time to get out of the house, get on the road, and try something exciting! Perhaps you spent too much time indoors over the winter and need to get back in touch with nature. Well, the Enchanted Mountains of Cattaraugus County asks, “Where do you want to play today?”

Cattaraugus County photo of things to do

Warm up to Excitement

As the snow begins to melt and the creeks rise, Cattaraugus Creek becomes a whitewater rafter’s paradise. Head out for up to Level III Class Rapids in Zoar Valley with one of our great guide services. Spend the whole day there, taking in breathtaking beauty of the gorge and winding river. The abundance of well-stocked creeks throughout Cattaraugus County creates a great opportunity for the fishing enthusiasts, too, once trout season opens on April 1. Cattaraugus Creek has been named one of the northeast’s best top 10 steelhead fishing sites. 

Stretch those Legs

Hibernate over the winter? Smell the fresh air, watch the flowers start to blossom, and welcome the birds back. Get those weary muscles outside and on the move at Allegany State Park. Hike around the lake, drop a line in for fishing, or get the kayak out of the garage. Rock City Park opens in May, and you’ll see nature come back to life as you walk amongst the giant rocks. Griffis Sculpture Park also opens on the first of May, where steel sculptures welcome you and spring. To really warm up this season, climb through the trees and zip past the canopy lines at Sky High Adventure Park. Another Black Diamond Course was added this year, making a total of 13 different courses for you to try.

Plant New Plans

The backgrounds of New York’s Amish Trail become easy to travel on again in the springtime, which leaves you with a perfect driving tour to cure your cabin fever. Cruise quiet roads, view newly painted green fields and valleys, and purchase handmade products made by talented craftsmen. Cattaraugus County is home to Old Order Amish who adhere to strict guidelines and use no electricity, no running water, and dress in plain clothes of greys and blues. Adventure all around the western side of our county while making stops at different shops along the way that offer a variety of goods.

Renew and Energize

Spring is a time to feel rejuvenated. The Enchanted Mountains offers an excess of events when the cold weather starts to clear out. Thaw out with the Annual Maple Weekends on April 2–3, and watch the production of maple syrup right before you. The Olean Home and Garden Show on April 8–10 shows you all the latest trends and ideas for spring cleanup time in your home. Allegany State Park brings the fun in May with the Adventure Run on May 7, the GeoBash on May 20–22, and the Allegany Nature Pilgrimage the first weekend in June. Let your creative side blossom at Rock City Park’s Art and Craft Show during Mother’s Day Weekend, and make sure to have the motorcycle out of the garage in time for Gowanda’s Hollywood Happening the first weekend in June.

So get into the swing of spring ,and get outdoors in the Enchanted Mountains of Western NY!

Start to Thaw Out in the Enchanted Mountains of Western New York with the Annual Maple Weekends

Contributed by Cattaraugus County Tourism

People in a cafeteria area at maple weekends

[Image: Cattaraugus County Tourism]

Cattaraugus County has many tree-lined hills covered with maple trees. This makes March and April some of the best times of year. Why, you ask? Maple season! Time for some sweet, syrupy goodness! With all these beautiful maple trees around, you can bet that we have some of the best tasting maple syrup around as well as maple farms that range from family size to full-on, year ’round productions.

All of New York State shares in this splendid time of year when the world around us starts to thaw out and the sap starts to flow. Therefore, we devote two maple weekends each year to our maple farms. You can tour one of the participating farms, try samples, join in on fun activities, or just purchase some of this liquid goodness. So how does warming up with a hot pile of pancakes sound to ease the cold of winter?

March is the beginning of a season of tradition where local maple farms begin to tap the trees in hopes of some sweet sap flowing down into their buckets. The time period between winter and spring is best for collection, with temperatures around 40 degrees being ideal. Nowadays, trees are tapped with cordless drills and small plastic spouts are placed to run the sap into a hanging bucket. But technology is always changing the ways people do anything, exploding into this process as well. Some maple farms have intricate webs of tubing, going straight from the tree to the tank with vacuums to draw out that delicious sap. Each farm uses the same basic idea to get the sap, but have different techniques and processing systems to bring syrup to your table.

People in a cafeteria at maple weekends

[Image: Cattaraugus County Tourism]

During the maple weekends of March 19–20 and April 2–3 from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. each day, some of our maple farms open their sugarhouses, set out the samples, and invite all to share in their love of one of the sweetest products Mother Nature produces. This activity is great for families and is kid-friendly. So lose those winter blues by heading outdoors, learning about your surroundings, and thawing out with Maple Weekends!

Sprague’s Maple Farm in Portville

Offers wagon rides to their authentic old-fashioned Sugar Shack where they have delicious samples waiting for you to try! Have you ever tasted maple wine? Learn a little about the various grades of syrup, sample the different ranges, eat a maple donut, or just stand next to evaporator and take in the smell of boiling sap. You will be sniffing your coat the rest of the week! Starting out as a hobby over 30 years ago, this huge farm now boasts a restaurant serving all your maple favorites as well as free-range turkey dinners. Maple is used in almost every dish that is served, making anything you order sweet and savory.

Wright Farms in Farmersville

It’s worth a visit to see how they are able to manage 8,000 taps. Five generations of Wright’s have worked to maintain the tradition of producing maple syrup and maple products on the farm since 1840. In fact, one of those generations was inducted into the American Maple Museum’s Hall of Fame in 1978 for his contributions to the maple industry. Besides syrup, they make maple cream, which can be used as a topping for pancakes, waffles, french toast, hot cereal, fresh fruit, ice cream, and more!

Boberg’s Maple in Delevan

Known for their Maple Cream, visit Boberg’s for a tasty treat! Their process is more traditional, with older equipment adding to the charm of the Farm. Warm up to this family owned and operated business. Samples are available.

The Pancake House at Moore’s in Freedom

They’re still serving up “all you can eat” pancakes from January to mid-April! Their unique restaurant is also filled with a selection of antiques, including a washing machine, sleds, tools, chinaware, knickknacks, and other memorabilia. This year, they are offering wagon rides to the Sugar Shack, samples, and more fun! Discover why you will be travelling back to this Pancake House over and over again throughout the season.

Maple Glen Sugar House in Gowanda

About 40 miles south of Buffalo, they recently remodeled their sugarhouse. You can come in during Maple Weekends and see the evaporator at work, sample some goodies, and learn about their farm that started out 20 years ago and now takes care of over 4,000 taps! In the past, they had horse-drawn wagon rides, tours, and demonstrations as well as other food you can buy. See what surprises they have for you this year.

Bottles and decor at Cattaraugus County Maple Weekend

[Image: Cattaraugus County Tourism]

Whatever farm you decide to go to, admission is FREE and all are more than happy to welcome you to their sugarhouse with a sweet, warm aroma of heated maple syrup. Each farm takes pride in their product and are happy to be doing what they are. Come to Cattaraugus County and embrace our agricultural side—your stomach will thank you!

Are two weekends not enough? Then keep a heads up for the Franklinville’s WNY Maple Festival April 24–25—two days of pancake eating, craft items, a parade, and live demonstrations. Read more about these events and places on our website, or get more information by calling 1-800-331-0543 or emailing info@enchantedmountains.com.