Rangeley Resort, My Home away from Home

Rangeley Resort, My Home away from Home

Well I finally got here. Rangeley Resort, my home away from home for the next 7 days. I must admit that the drive has me second guessing my decision to go to Boston on Thursday for class. But I can’t change plans now because I told my pet sitter I’d be home Friday morning to take care of Rocky. Good thing I like to drive.

sign post, cabin address, home away from home

Roaming, Roaming, Roaming!

I thought cell phones did away with roaming charges years ago? I guess not. T Mobile just sent me a text that I was using up my roaming limits. They are about to shut me off if I don’t upgrade. Guess I can live without cell service if I have to.

My little Cabin in the woods.

I’m impressed by my little home away from home. If I could build my own little place this would be perfect. There’s a lovely front porch with 2 Adirondack chairs. They are much more comfortable as an adult than when I was a kid. There’s also a picnic table for eating outside. The decorative touches are wonderful from moose coat hangers to a vintage rotary phone.

There’s even a Lincoln Log set. Talk about a trip down memory lane!

The First Floor

The first floor is where I live.

Living room, dining table and kitchen

There’s full kitchen with a dining room table. I love the dish rack.dish rack

I wish I’d thought of that when I did over my kitchen at home. The kitchen dining room and living room are on an open floor plan. The living room has lots of comfy seating, a fireplace and a TV that actually works!Fireplace in living room



The washer & dryer are in a closet in the hall. A full bathroom and two bedrooms round out the first floor.

bedroom on main floor

The upper floorUpstairs bedroom in cabin

The upstairs boasts another bedroom with a TV and a bath and shower. Its so cozy. I could really fall in love with this cabin.  Although the bedroom is under the eves, the room is built so the slanted ceiling isn’t a problem. It kind of reminded me of my bedroom growing up with its slanted ceilings.

Private but not isolated.

Log Cabin at Rangeley Lake ResortMy cabin is set back into a little bit of woods. It’s private but not isolated. There are other cabins nearby.

The Main lodge has a swimming pool, sauna and hot tubs as well as a seating area and fireplace.

There is a separate fitness center located on Dallas Hill. There’s a beautiful view of Rangeley Lake from the parking lot.

If you drive (or walk) down toward the lake, there’s an “old fashioned” swimming hole. How’s that for ambiance?

Posted in architecture, Maine, Real Estate | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

In search of Rangeley Lake Resort

First Stop Appalachian Trail

Not having much choice I continued on Route 4 looking for someone or someplace  to ask directions to the resort. I blame myself because I didn’t take the time to map out the route first and use OnStar as back-up. I hadn’t gone too far when I saw a sign for the Appalachian Trail.Appalachian Trail sign Pulling into the lot I found a text had come in from my sister. Seeing that reminded me that when on vacation you don’t get lost, you sight see.

My respects to Geraldine Largay

I was still without a cell signal so I checked out my location. On the right side of the road was a trail shelter for hikers. Slowly it dawned on me that this must be the section of the trail where Hiker Geraldine Largay got lost. The search for her and the eventual recovery of her remains were the subject of a couple of episodes of North Woods Law. Her story is very tragic. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/27/us/missing-hiker-geraldine-largay-appalachian-trail-maine.html?_r=0 It especially hit me because she was hiking alone, something I often find myself doing as well.

As I sat thinking about that I remembered one of the things that hindered the search was that there was no cell service. Geraldine couldn’t call for help and the wardens couldn’t “ping” her phone. No sense waiting here then, it’s back on the road..

The Suds and Sizzle

My next stop was at a little laundry and tanning place. The sign said open but no one was around. I must say, it looked far cleaner and well maintained than the laundromats in my area. We could take a lesson. I didn’t linger. I could see the afternoon shadows getting longer.

Dallas Hill

A mile or so after leaving the Suds and Sizzle I spotted an scenic overlook. Up until now there were only glimpses of the lake through the trees. At the overlook was a gorgeous view of Lake Rangeley.rangeley overlook

It reminded me of looking out over Lake George, where I grew up. I also could get a cell signal so immediately called the resort.

Maggie answered and told me to fear not, I was almost there. Continue on the way I was going, I would pass the IGA grocery store and then the Main lodge would be on my left. IGA grocery storeSure enough. It was right there!

I have arrived

Maggie had me checked in in no time. There are so many amenities they will take up another post.

I have a lovely 3 bedroom cabin all my own for the next 7 days.I have a pile of maps and even a list of moose watching locations. This is going to be great!




Posted in Maine, scenic drives, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

On the Road to Maine

We gotta get out of this place

I am so ready for my Maine Vacation. Unfortunately life has a way of throwing a curve ball. Sweet Rocky had to go to the vet for another B 12 shot then the only time I could get an oil change for the car was Saturday morning. After that I forgot to run the dishwasher before I left for the auto mechanic so I had to do that when I got back. I turned it on and started loading the car but by the time I finished and I could retrieve Rocky’s clean dishes it was 1 pm. Sometimes I think leaving on a plane is easier than a drive vacation.

 On the road to Maine

Finally on my way I topped off the gas tank and made a stop at the bank. As I left the bank I punched in OnStar. I had no idea where I was going so I was pretty sure using their directions was the best way to go. I didn’t research it ahead of time. As expected, they routed me through Boston. They just love to do that! The traffic was so so. There was a bad accident on the southbound expressway but I was going north so traffic only slowed down so everyone could gawk, then moved on.

OnStar Strikes again

The desk at the resort told me to gas up in Lewiston Maine. I thought that meant I’d be on back roads when I got to Lewiston. But Noooo, not the OnStar way. I was on the highway and watched exit after exit to Lewiston and Rangeley pass by. I even saw one exit marked Bar Harbor. I had no idea Rangeley Lakes was so far north!

Rangeley Lake Maine


Eventually I got the alert to leave the highway. That began a scenic ride through various quaint little towns. I was getting restless now. I was ready to find my home away from home for the next 7 days.

You are arriving at your destination, On Left

Finally I began to see signs for Rangley Lakes region. I was starting to think OnStar had me lost. The navigation system beeped to take a left on Chandler Rd but Chandler Rd was not a through street and besides, it had a big locked gate across it. Alternate directions later I was cruising down Maine’s Route 4.

wooded road

I thought for sure I was getting close but when the Navigation said, in 1/2 mile you will reach your destination, on left. I wasn’t so sure anymore. I was in the middle of nowhere.

Sure enough when it beeped that I had arrived, the only thing on my left was a big dirt bank. I tried calling OnStar again but couldn’t  get a connection. I tried to call the resort but there was no cell service. I was truly on my own.

Posted in Maine, Pets, scenic drives | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Bash Bish Falls

Bash Bish Falls

Bash Bish Falls is located in a State Park of the same name in the Town of Mount Washington, Ma. This is the highest single drop water fall with the state’s borders.

Bash BishFalls lies in the Taconic mountains located int he Hudson Valley. Even so, Massachusetts residents prefer to include it in the Berkshire mountains and New York residents consider it all part of the Adirondack Mountains.

60-80 ft drop

After a series of cascades, nearly 200 ft in total, the final drop splits. The twin falls stream past the jutting center rock to fall 60-80 feet to the serene pool at the bottom.

A Dangerous Attraction

The falls are clearly posted  “no swimming” but I saw several people with shirts off and towels ready that were just itching to jump in. The rangers were present the whole time I was there making sure none one acted on the impulse. Because of the large number of drowning, injuries and falls in 2009 AOL Travel named Bash Bish Falls as one of the “Most Dangerous Tourist Attractions” in the U.S. In 2010 AOL upgraded the warning  to the world.

Leaving the Falls

Obviously leaving the falls was easier than climbing up to it. Driving back to the highway was shorter and quicker going through New York. It wasn’t long until I was back on I 90 heading for the New York State Line.

Wildlife in New York

I had barely crossed the stat line when I spotted a brown spot against the green. As I drew closer I could see it was a deer. Just about the time I drew even with her I realized it wasn’t one deer. It was a doe and fawn. The fawn was tiny and covered with spots. That made my day. A beautiful waterfall and now a mama and baby deer. What more could you ask for on a Saturday afternoon?


Posted in animals, attraction, Massachusetts, Travel | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

And Now The End is Near- Bash Bish Falls

And so the Hike begins

I started down the well groomed trail. I was looking forward to the falls. Bash Bish Brook was running pretty fast along side the trail.  Its a pretty walk but it wasn’t long before I realized that my definition of flat and the rest of the world seemed to be quite different. There was a subtle but definite incline. It didn’t seem to be getting any smaller. The farther I went the more the trail climbed.


At the beginning

At first the brook was quite close to the trail. I could imagine setting up the tripod in the middle of the brook and taking pictures from that angle. A few time I ventured off the trail to explore the edge of the brook. At one point I found a swam of yellow and black butterflies. They looked like tiger swallow tails but I couldn’t see and “tails” on any of them.


Onward and upward

The longer I trudged along the deeper the gorge got and soon I was looking through tree branches to see the brook. At one point I heard voices and laughing. Some folks more agile and fit than I had managed to get down the steep slope and were swimming in the stream. Early on there were benches where you could stop to rest but as the trail took a steeper climb the benches gave way to natural boulders. Its only 3/4 mile but it felt much longer. I was working up a sweat in spite of the breeze off the brook and shade of the forest. On my next break I doused myself liberally with bug spray. No mosquitoes but lots of little black flies and stinging horse flies.


The Mass-NY State Line

Finally I saw the State line marker. I was told once I passed that I would almost be there. That was the boost I needed. Apparently others felt the same way because as I stood there several other groups  came by and all stopped to take selfies with the sign. Its a mile marker of sorts.


Sure enough, It wasn’t much further when I saw the trail widen out. A picnic table was positioned off to one side. Then I saw a couple of young women run out of another trail. It was the 1/4 mile long trail from the Massachusetts parking lot. They told me they were very concerned about the return hike.


Bash Bish Falls.

In the same wide open area there was an observation platform. You got a good look at the falls there. But there was still one more place to check out.


The Bottom of the Falls


A series of stone steps led down to the base of the falls. Families were sitting on the rocks, some having a picnic lunch, others taking photos with their cell phone. After a bit of hesitation I made my way down the uneven stairs. I wish I’d had more time to enjoy the falls but too soon it was time to start working my way back. The biggest obstacle was the long stone staircase. But slow and steady finally got me back on top.


It was just about 2 pm by the time I got back to the parking lot. I needed to get going if I was going to have a chance to visit my mom, the main purpose of this trip!

Posted in attraction, Hikes, Massachusetts, New York | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

The Destination isn’t Bad Either-Bash Bish Falls

The Destination isn’t bad either.

After  I left the one lane road behind it wasn’t too far before I reached my destination. I pulled into the parking area at the trail head for Bash Bish Falls and immediately noticed two different trails. One said scenic views, the other Bash Bish Falls. There were quite a few cars. It was obvious this was a popular place.

Oh to be 20 years younger

My first order of business was to check out the scenic area but two steps into the woods and I faced a huge rock. As I contemplated my next move two young ladies came up behind me. The hesitated for about 2 seconds and then as nimbly as a gazelle they were up and over the top. Ouch. That made me feel really old but it was apparent that I was not going to be able to follow them.

Next Stop the Trail Head

That decision made for me, I headed to the sign marked trail head. This time I was faced with a short flight of rustic stairs or walking down a slope next to the stairs. I chose the slope, sort of a poor man’s handicap ramp. I’d just gotten back on the trail when I met a couple huffing and puffing back up. They warned me to be very careful because parts of the trail were not in good shape, muddy and slippery. Plus it was steep and rocky. They didn’t make it all the way down. The gentleman told me this was steep but only 1/4 of a mile. If I wanted a flat trail I should drive down the road a little to the next parking area. That trail is 3/4 mile, a bit longer but  its flat.

Leaving Massachusetts

I chose to take the longer route. Flat was far preferable to huffing and puffing and climbing to get back. Going down might be ok but the return trip was bound to do me in. It wasn’t long until I passed a state line marker. I’d left Massachusetts and entered New York.

The New York Trail Head

Just past the state line marker was the New York Trail Head. They even had an overflow parking lot here, another sign of its popularity. Time to load up my backpack with water, snacks and bug spray. My camera around my neck and trekking pole in my hand I started toward the “Flat” trail where I got my first glimpse of Bash Bish Brook. It was just 12 noon.


Posted in attraction, Hikes, Massachusetts, New York, Travel | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Its The Journey Not the Destination

Its The Journey Not the Destination

How many times have you heard that in one form or another? Enjoy the journey. Have a good trip. That certainly applied to my trip to Bash Bish Falls. I got there from the Massachusetts side. But I left thorough New York. That seemed much shorter and faster.

It all starts at Exit 2

It all began with my plan to visit my mother for and hour or so. But that’s a long ride (4+ hours) for just a quick visit. I thought I’d combine   a visit with her with a visit to the falls. Vising Bash Bish Falls has been a  goal the last couple of years every since I first heard of it.

I left for the drive to the Falls at 8:00 AM and after a few quick stops for things like gas and water I was on the road by 8:30 AM. By 11 AM I was approaching exit 2 off the Mass Pike in Lee MA. My directions were pretty good. From the exit I followed 102 West to Stockbridge. In Stockbridge I picked up route 7 through Great Barrington.

I wish I had more time, the towns are gorgeous. Very photogenic.

To Turn or Not to Turn

In Great Barrington I picked up Route 23 to South Egremont where I was supposed to connect with  Rte 41. This is where I may have made a mistake. Before I ever got to South Egremont I saw a sign for Rte 41 South. Do I take this turn or keep going? I made a quick decision to take that turn and it didn’t match the directions from there. I drove and drove looking for Mount Washington Rd. Finally I began to see the signs for the park so I just kept going.

A New England Hana Rd

You may remember my harrowing experience on Maui’s Road to Hana. https://aroundustyroads.com/2017/02/12/the-road-to-hana-revisited/


Now I was on a winding, narrow road that kept turning back on itself in a series of switchbacks. Just as my mind flashed to the same type of drive in Maui, I saw a sign…one lane road ahead..and I was back on Maui all over again! Luckily unlike Maui, I didn’t meet any other cars on this stretch of road.

The scenery was beautiful. When I finally found Mount Washington Rd, I saw a marsh spread out beside the road. I couldn’t pass it up. I parked the car on the side of the road to get a few pictures.

This is where I finally got a red winged blackbird in my lens!


Then It was back in the car in search of the falls. I felt sure I was getting close.

Posted in Massachusetts, scenic drives, Travel | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Another Class and Some Photo News

Class number 2

I took my lunch very late today so I could leave work early. I missed some of the traffic and made it to class with time to spare. Class #2 was pretty basic. But I did learn some tips about menus, not the restaurant kind, and had a good review of various hosting companies like, Bluehost, Go Daddy. Word press and others.

This week’s enhancement

The change I made to the site from the class was to add some more Tabs. Right below the heading photo where the Home, About and Contact live I’ve added 2 more choices. One is My Photo Page and the other is Travel. If you right click on My Photo Page it will take you right to my zenfolio web site! No more searching to find my pictures. The Travel Tab will take you to all my previous posts that have to do with Travel. I’m not sure if I’ll keep them all. I may have to “tweak” them a little but time will tell. Comments are welcome!

Some Photo News

I’ve been found again! Yay! This time I was approached by Landesblasorchester Baden-Württemberg, What’s that you ask?  They are an amateur orchestra who compete on the world stage.


This is from their email to me:

After several reflections, we have chosen a serious theme: “Every child has a right to future”, which is accompanied by pictures during the music. We will play at the Wind Band World Championship in Kerkrade/NL,

They found one of my pictures and want to use it. I am honored and of course gave my permission.

The photo they asked to use it the one I called the Longest Dirt Road in the World from our South Dakota adventure. Here it is for your viewing pleasure.

Their interpretation is “The Road to Nowhere”. Without knowing the history of the picture I can certainly see why that would come to mind. I don’t know if there will be any photo credits but that’s ok. In this case I am just honored to have my work included. It amazes me that my little picture has come to the attention of someone from Europe! It’s a small, small world.

Posted in Photography, South Dakota | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Beautiful Bellagio Fountains, Las Vegas

Beautiful Bellagio

Back in 2015 I wrote a post called Beautiful Bellagio about the wonderful dancing fountains. https://aroundustyroads.com/2015/03/09/beautiful-bellagio/ They are an attraction that is a natural fit for me. I love water, be it streams, lakes, ponds or oceans. Have you ever noticed the way the sun turns a waterfall into a veil of diamonds? Or a lake into a mirror? Have you ever tried scuba diving? That’s really becoming one with nature.

The Fire didn’t Stop the Show

In April of this year (2017) a fire broke out at the Bellagio hotel. The fire lasted about 30 minutes causing a tremendous amount of damage.  $450,000.00 worth! My first thought at the news was what happened to the fountains? I wondered if  they were damaged? Apparently not at all. The fountains bounced and dazzled the crowd on the strip while the fire raged in the background.

One! Singular Sensation

The fountain show changes all the time. In 2015  when the background music was from the musical A Chorus Line, the fountains danced and swayed to the tune of One, Singular Sensation, every little step she takes…

After 2 years, I now present the Dancing Fountains!

The Pink Panther stole the show

The night of the fire the Pink Panther stole the show. Spectators thought the fire was part of the show. As the smelly smoke reached the crowd they realized the fire wasn’t  background to the fountains and the Pink Panther Theme Music.

The Fountains At the Bellagio

In true “The Show Must Go On” tradition, the shops reopened almost immediately in an annex. It wasn’t long before the same shops moved back to the Bellagio hotel. With the damage from the fire repaired, life on the strip has returned to normal. The beautiful Bellagio fountains continue to bounce and dance and entertain. If you are in Las Vegas it’s a free show that is not be missed.


Posted in attraction, Las Vegas, Nevada, Travel | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

One Waterfall Down Eight to Go!

One Down and Eight to go

Saturday afternoon the sun came out and I ran for the car. I had several different options but would only have time for one. A drive to Royalston MA to visit Doane’s Falls was the winner. There are 9 waterfalls on the Ultimate Massachusetts Waterfall Road trip. Doane’s Falls was my number one choice. It was close (2 hours). A doable afternoon trip.

What Waterfalls are on the list?

  1. Doane’s Falls, Royalston, MA
  2. The Cascade, North Adams Ma
  3. Wahconah Falls, Dalton, MA
  4. March Cataract Falls, Williamstown, MA
  5. Bash Bish Falls, Mt Washington State Park, MA
  6. Race Brook Falls, Sheffield, MA
  7. Umpachene Falls, New Marlborough, MA
  8. Campbell Falls, New Marlborough, MA
  9. Glendale Falls, Middlefield, MA

Stone Bridge and Waterfall

I found the Falls with little trouble. The roads are paved and easy to navigate. No need for off-roading or mudding  here. There is limited parking but if you can park in the little lot the Falls start right there. The water spills out of the culvert under a lovely stone bridge. You probably just drove over the bridge to get to the parking lot.

You can hear the falls before you see them. Just a few steps onto the trail and you can see the racing water poring out of the culvert. When I walked back to the road and looked on the other side of the bridge the brook was quite calm. It’s an amazing contrast.

Doane’s Falls Recap

The drive to Doane’s Falls was pretty easy. I only made one wrong turn and that was quickly corrected. Once on the right road the falls themselves are clearly marked. It’s warming up ans the flying, biting  critters are starting to come out. I hadn’t thought of that. Next trip to a waterfall will mean bug spray (extra strength), a hat, and snacks. Fast food  and lunch places are few and far between  once you leave Framingham behind.

I didn’t get all  the way to the bottom of the trail. I think there are more falls and rapids further down but the giant mosquitoes drove me back. This will be really pretty in the fall. With a little less water and the colored leaves. I definitely need to plan a return trip.


Posted in hiking, Massachusetts | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments