The Ithaca area harbors more than 100 gorges within a 10-mile radius. Hike into the best of them on this four-mile lollipop. The route meanders through Buttermilk State Park along the 10 waterfalls of Buttermilk Creek and around Lake Treman. Starting at the lower park entrance, climb the steep, rocky gorge up the west side of 160-foot Buttermilk Falls. Look for 400-million-year-old fossils of sea creatures in the 50-foot walls. At the upper park entrance (mile .5), continue on the Bear Trail another .75 mile to the Lake Treman Trail, an easy 1.5-mile loop around the 25-acre lake. When all of this water makes you thirsty for something else, return to your car on the Rim Trail (via the Bear Trail with an over-gorge view) and head south for .5 mile on NY 13. Turn left into Ithaca Beer Company to quaff a tall frosty.
Try the CascaZilla red ale for monster hops and caramel malt. (607) 273-0766; ithacabeer.com
go two miles on NY 13. Turn left on East Buttermilk