Winter 2015: 36 Hours Syracuse

Beat the winter blues in the Salt City

By Lorna Oppedisano

Clinton Square at night. Photo by Creative Core.

Clinton Square at night. Photo by Creative Core.

Syracuse a nearby retreat for great food, fun

Syracuse is known for a few things: the mall, the Orange and snow. You’ve probably elbowed through crowds at DestinyUSA — and congratulations if you held on to your sanity in the process. If you’re a sports fan, you’ve either cheered, jeered or flat-out cried at a Syracuse University game, depending on the day. And this is the north country so you know snow.

But the Salt City offers more than shopping and a ball game. Whether you want to explore downtown or venture outside the city center, Syracuse has restaurants, museums, boutiques and outdoor activities for days. If you only have a weekend to spare, here are your best bets. [Read more…]

History lurks below the surface: New York is home to six of nation’s 36 meromictic lakes

 

Deadman’s Point at Green Lake in Green Lakes State Park, Fayetteville, is home to one of New York’s six meromictic lakes, of which there are only 36 nationwide. Chalky shoreline formations created by bacteria are visible in the foreground. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Deadman’s Point at Green Lake in Green Lakes State Park, Fayetteville, is home to one of New York’s six meromictic lakes, of which there are only 36 nationwide. Chalky shoreline formations created by bacteria are visible in the foreground. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

From the rugged majesty of the Adirondacks to the labyrinthine depths of the subterranean cave system, the serenity of Lake Ontario’s shores to the quiet whispering of the St. Lawrence River, chances are good that no matter where you stand in Northern New York, breathtaking views or interesting natural formations are just a stone’s throw away. While much of the beauty here is obvious, there are some formations that are not exactly what they seem.

Surface and bottom waters mix seasonally in traditional lakes, delivering oxygen to the bottom, which in turn allows fish and plant life to survive. A meromictic lake is one whose waters do not mix. They are rare, especially in temperate climates like that of New York state. There are only 36 known meromictic lakes in the world. New York state is home to six of them, and three of the six are located just outside of Syracuse in the towns of Fayetteville and DeWitt: Green Lake, Round Lake and Glacier Lake.

Meromictic lakes are Mother Nature’s time capsules. Because their waters do not mix, the sediment along the lake bottom is not disturbed. This undisturbed sediment forms a natural record of environmental and aquatic conditions that often predates recorded history. Not surprisingly, this sediment is of particular interest to geologists and environmental scientists. [Read more…]