August 29, 2016

Creative Lodging

This week's adventures put us in Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Kane (Pennsylvania), and a tiny town in upstate New York near Rochester to visit friends.

Mileage on my feet was a very respectable 38+, although there were no real long strings of continuous miles of running and only one big 10 mile hike.  The heat and humidity inserted walk breaks into even my short (and medium) runs. 

The first real lodging surprise of the trip? The Hyatt Regency Cleveland.  The Hyatt bought this historic victorian building, which was apparently not in use, and modified the 2nd and third story empty retail spaces into lodging.  It's absolutely beautiful and the rooms are very unique, with huge high ceilings and molding, plus an anteroom with a separate door before you enter the sleeping quarters with the bathroom.  Using points and cash, the nightly fee was $55+tax, which was definitely the highest value room (in terms of luxury to cost) we've had on this trip (other than places we've managed to stay for free, of course).

The Hyatt Regency Cleveland

View of Pittsburgh from Mt. Washington

Kane, PA -- 2nd unexpected lodging location.
We wanted to do a 10ish mile hike in the Allegheny National Forest, so we called the visitors' center, asked for recommendations for hikes, and then asked for recommendations for lodging near the trailhead we selected.  They sent us to the delightfully charming Kane Manor Inn.

We were thrilled with the old home (under renovation, but our room was perfectly serviceable), the owner/manager was extremely friendly and helpful, and in general, it was in serious competition with the Hyatt in Cleveland (but hitting heavy on several different axes) for best value lodging at $69+taxes per night with full B&B breakfast included.

Allegheny National Forest, RimRock Loop Trail
The hike was just over ten miles including the out and back to the loop.  The best part about the trail was all of the various mushrooms.  The worst part was the spiders, spider webs, and bugs.  I had to remove my visor in a hurry when I saw a spider on it, just inches from my face.  I realized a mile or so later that in doing so, I'd tossed my sunglasses into the forest.  Oh, well, I replaced them with cheap tourist crap from today's stop at Niagra Falls.

Wacky Mushrooms.

And more.

Not sure if this is due to sun exposure, or just natural.

Lots of these ones everywhere.

Funky coral-shaped funghi.

A very red and orange mushroom.
When we left Kane, we headed to Kinzua Bridge State Park on our way to upstate New York.  If you ever get a chance to stop by, I highly recommend it.  It is shocking what an F-1 Tornado can do to a 600+ ft steel structure (they probably should have replaced the original iron bolts...).

New York, near Rochester, with friends who left the bay area several years ago was perhaps the most relaxed we've been this whole trip.  I got in a run to their house followed by a full day of hanging out by and in the pool with their kids while E&B did manual labor on a yard improvement project, followed by a walk with one of my favorite long lost friends, and a great dinner together before we said goodbye.

Nothing like quality time with friends you used to see often to remind you just how much you miss them and how lucky you were to have had them so close by and frequently in your life when you did.


Arvay said...

Was E a fun guy on this hike?


bt said...

@Arvay -- Absolutely.

Jen said...

Cool mushrooms! Spiders/bugs don't sound as cool though.

bt said...

@Jen -- the mushrooms were super cool. The spiders/bugs -- not so much. Especially the gnats. Nothing like gnats buzzing in your ears for the full 10 miles to remind you how blissfully quiet your other hikes have been...