Monday, July 16, 2012

My Favorite Summer Get Away

When most people think of Presque Isle, they think casino. If so, you're missing out on one of the coolest day trips from the CLE ever! My Mom had been telling me about it for years and I just couldn't believe it was that great.  A couple of years ago I finally made the trip and now it's an must do summer event! (Lesson learned - thanks Mom!)
What is so fabulous that it made me miss the Taste of Tremont? Presque Isle State Park! Just over the PA border near Erie is a summer dream come true. Presque Isle State Park is located on a peninsula that juts into Lake Erie. This "seashore" offers all kinds of recreation including boat tours, sand volleyball, canoeing, hiking, paddle boats, swimming, fishing and more.
This is the path!
But the thing that brings me back year after year is the bike path. Yes, it's even better than my local favorite - the tow path!  How can this be you might be asking. Here's why I love it:


1. It's flat. For this girl that is beyond awesome!
2. It's paved (bonus yay!)
3. It's a loop. 13.5 miles and since it's flat and paved, any level of rider can do it. This was my first ride of the year and I did it easily.
4. You ride along the water. When we were there yesterday, there was a sail boat race of some sort that was fun to watch. Plus, you can hop off your bike and hit the beach.
5. The path is in dappled shade with cooling breezes. Last year we road in temps nearing 100 and it was still pleasant.
6. If you go the right time of year (now!) you can find blackberries growing along the path. The perfect snack!
7. There are benches and water fountains for breaks. 
8. It's cheap! Can't afford a trip to Florida? For the cost of gas alone, you can have a great ride and a picnic on the beach. 
photo credit:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Presque_Isle_State_Park 
We were really lucky because it rained like crazy on the way, but when we parked and started unloading the bike, we were rain free. The sky started out cloudy but ended up clearing up to reveal a perfect day for a ride. Around the loop you see a lighthouse, Perry's Monument (yep, the same Commodore Perry honored at Put In Bay,) and 13 beaches. These beaches are seriously fabulous and look more like Florida than Pennsylvania. There are ton of picnic areas all along the trail too.
At Perry's Monument
After the perfect ride, we headed to my favorite spot to grab a bite to eat: Sara and Sally's. It's a fun place to stop because it's decorated like a 50's diner, and a tasty place to eat because the food is all fresh and done right. The menu is limited but there's still something for everyone. 
Hot dogs rule the menu here and you can get regular (natural casings for the crunch!) or foot longs. The buns are from a bakery and toasted. They have a topping bar so you can create your favorite masterpiece. They also have hamburgers, chicken sandwiches and tenders, curly fries and handmade onion rings. Another unique thing about Sara's is that they serve Chicago-style Italian Beef Sandwiches! They look delicious but I had a hot dog so I could save room for a hot fudge milk shake too. They are also known for their orange sherbet that you can have in a vanilla twist cone. Next time!
what a feast!

This is where you fill up your hot dog with tons of fun toppings
It's an easy trip to do in a day but there's enough fun to make a weekend out of it. Since we went on Sunday, we had to come home that same day. There's still a lot of summer left so grab your bikes and head to PA. Don't have a bike? No worries - they rent them there including 4 wheeled surreys built for 2. Next weekend is "Discover Presque Isle" - an annual festival that includes food, music and more.
You can see more pics by clicking here. Happy riding!



5 comments:

  1. Festival, you say? I'm there! :-)

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  2. What a great getaway! Thanks for sharing!

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  3. Love that area. Did a race there a few years back and thought it's be the perfect little getaway. Glad you enjoyed yourself and if I go back (when) I will totally go to that restaurant!

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    1. Definitely go back - it's so close and fun!

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  4. I'll have to check out the area, I would love to bike the path. My aunt is always trying to get us to stop in Erie, now I have an excuse (other than visiting them)!

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