Just Gotta Get Away (Part 2)
September 14, 2013

Just Gotta Get Away (Part 2)

Recently, I wrote about three great places to experience if you have a long weekend to enjoy. Now I want to move onto two other states described thus far in the National Geographic series, “Long Weekends Like A Local.”

Since I started with the West, now I will jump to the East Coast, specifically New York. So far, Nat Geo has described two places to check out in New York: Montauk and New Paltz. I have not had the pleasure of either one of these, so I will not be able to add my own personal memories, but I am excited by the prospect of both for my own travels. I have an itch for the East Coast that this just exacerbates.

New Paltz

Nat Geo calls New Paltz the Boulder, Colorado, of the East Coast. Although it is only a little over an hour from the famed New York City, it is a climbing mecca in the Northeast. With mountain ranges the Shawangunk (also called The Gunks) and Catskills nearby and two state parks, visitors can experience plenty of hiking, but it is the climbing that brings people to this locale.

Accordingly, the Long Weekends Like A Local webpage says, “The Gunks are one of the premier climbing areas in North America, with more than 2,000 climbs. Don’t miss these classics: Gelsa, Disneyland, High Exposure, CCK, Yellow Ridge, Modern Times, Alphonse, Arrow, Bonnie’s Roof, MF, Erect Direction, Fat City Direct, Yellow Wall, Kligfield’s Follies, Supper’s Ready, Projectile, and Survival of the Fittest.”

As if hiking and climbing weren’t enough, New Paltz also has great cross-country skiing to boot. Oh, and did I mention the caves at Bonticou? Yeah, this definitely sounds like my kind of long-weekend trip…or maybe even summertime vacation?


What sets Montauk apart from the other city in New York state, as well as the cities out west, is the surfing. Because it is a hamlet, the ocean surrounds much of Montauk, which means that the place has a whole new area of outdoor fun to explore. As Nat Geo notes, “Within 19.8 square miles, Montauk houses six state parks and perhaps the most photographed coastline (complete with wind-sculpted rocks and a historic lighthouse) in America. Locals love to fish and relish the fact that their mind-blowingly beautiful port sets more fishing records than any other place in the world.”

If that didn’t catch your attention, what about this: the place has food and libation to compliment any weekend get-away. Suggested places to eat and imbibe include the “Ditch Witch for a pre-surf breakfast burrito, Naturally Good Foods & Cafe for lunch, and Happy Bowls for a snack. For dinner, the Crow’s Nest Inn & Restaurant, Harvest on Fort Pond, or Duryea’s Lobster Deck (BYOB),” Montauket, Gig Shack, and Sloppy Tuna. Montauk has outdoor fun galore as well as indoor enjoyment to grab any traveler’s attention.

In the last installment, I will look at the last of the suggested places to visit for a long weekend: California.

Image Credit: Thinkstock.com

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Rayshell E. Clapper is an Associate Professor of English at a rural college in Oklahoma where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Composition classes. She has presented her original fiction and non-fiction at several conferences and events including: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, Howlers and Yawpers Creativity Symposium, Southwest/Texas Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Regional Conference, and Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. Her publications include Cybersoleil Journal, Sugar Mule Literary Magazine, Red Dirt Anthology, Originals, and Oklahoma English Journal. Beyond her written works, she successfully created a writer's group in rural Oklahoma to support burgeoning writers. The written word is her passion, and all she experiences inspires that passion. She hopes to help inspire others through her words.

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