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Theo 01-04-2020 12:45 PM

Robert H.Treman SP - Ithaca, NY
We're going to the Robert H. Treman State Park near Ithaca, NY this May for our niece's graduation. The area looks to be an excellent area for hiking and exploring the waterfalls along the Enfield River!

Have any of you spent time there? If so, we'd love to know more about your experiences in the park. We were able to snag Site #1 (electric site) and it looks like the Roo and the TV will be able to fit there.

Thanks in advance for your replies!

sherman12 01-08-2020 09:46 AM

Theo, Robert Treman is a beautiful NYS Park. At site 1 you will want to park your Roo on an angle as the site is up a little shelf type embankment. Your electric will be close and down the hill from your site, at the rear of think site 10 is a water spigot. This park does not seem to mind if you leave your water hose hooked up the whole time there, unlike many state parks.

Make sure to take a ride up the road, I think county Rt. 329 to the upper falls at Robert Treman. My DW and I have stayed at this park several times over the last ten years but this past Columbus Day weekend was the first time we went up to the upper falls and all I can say is "Spectacular!". The hike down is about 1 1/2 miles and you'll come out near your campsite, only to go back up on the opposite side that is less strenuous, but near the end of the trail, there is something like 225 stairs to climb, some steep. All in all down and back you will encounter nearly 500 stairs and the round trip should take you just over 2 hours.

About 2-3 miles down the highway heading towards Ithaca is Buttermilk Falls State Park. Your pass from RT SP gets you in for free. The waterfall here can be "Disney-esk"if there is a heavy flow. The hiking trail up on side of the falls is only a half-mile, however, it is a very steep slow climb that Will get your heart pumping! Make sure you wear good shoes, there may be wet slippery areas near the falls. Sandals do not work well. After the half-mile walk, you will come to the stairs leading up to Rt. 89 and an overpass over the river. You can cross the highway and continue into upper Buttermilk and hike to the lake that feeds the river and falls, or cross over the bridge and hike back down the opposite side of the falls, which is what my DW and I do at least once a year as she grew up on Rt. 89 a short distance from Buttermilk and we make a pilgrimage to it every summer. Up Rt. 89, on the other side of town heading north from Ithaca, is Taughonek Falls SP (along with the wine trail). This park is on the shore of Cayuga Lake and across 89 is the mile hike to see the falls, which is one of the tallest waterfalls along the Eastern US. Again, if it is a wet Spring, it's worth the gentle walk up to the falls and your camping pass gets you in free.

Ithaca has many places to see such as the farmers market along the waterfront on weekends, follow Rt. 13 out of the park through the shopping center area and watch for signs, less than 15 minutes from the campground, get there early for breakfast from one of the many vendors. Cayuga Lake Wine Trail along Rt. 89, our favorite is Thirsty Owl, or head up Rt. 98 I think toward Cornell I'm told there are tons of things to see there and Six Mile Creek Winery maybe only 5 miles from town.

Finally, don't forget to walk "The Commons" area downtown, you'll see it coming down the hill from Cornell or Six Mile. Nice shops and one of our favorite wine bar/restaurants is Simone's right on the corner. Two doors down is Mahogany Grill, great steaks and atmosphere. Across the street from Simone's is Ithaca Brew Pub, best burgers and fries around with a large craft beer selection.

Enjoy the area, it is one of our favorite places to visit every summer.

Cabinfever97 01-08-2020 10:31 AM

What Sherman said!! I have been to that park and the others around it. BEAUTIFUL area. Worth the ride to Watkins Glen area as well. If you like wine plenty of places to taste around Seneca Lake. If you get that way and have time, take a drive at Watkins Glen International Speedway. They charge $30 to drive the road course, but way cool even if not a race fan!

Theo 01-08-2020 11:57 AM


Thanks sherman12 and Cabinfever97! You have provided such wonderful information that we are ready to leave right now.'s winter (*sigh*). :o

We'll have Friday night and Saturday to ourselves so a visit to the trails and Buttermilk are scheduled for Saturday. We have the trail maps already and are plotting routes for us humans and Cooper (who, of course, thinks he's a human). We're all three the same age (in human years) so no more than moderate hikes are in order for safety and to prevent our bodies from "seizing-up"!

Sunday is the graduation, so we'll explore downtown in that evening. Any idea if there are any dog-friendly dining spots?

Again, thank you both for the terrific information! :thumbsup:

sherman12 01-08-2020 12:10 PM

Theo sounds like you have a plan. To do the upper falls full trail at Treman as I suggested is strenuous but you can just go a little way in from the start and see many of the great views without walking the whole trail. At Buttermilk, if you take your time there are a number of level off rest areas to take a break on the right-side trail (more difficult) but again it is worth the walk. The other side coming down is a gentle easy fire road type walk with only a few steps near the bottom.

Simone's outside patio is dog-friendly as are All of the wineries. Also across the street from Simone's is a Mexican restaurant with a large outdoor patio that is dog-friendly. I believe they'll even bring Cooper a bowl of water, as will many of the wineries. When my DW and I had our two dogs, a yellow lab and a shepherd mix that looked like a wolf I swear we would make friends with every person on the patio bistro at Thirsty Owl Winery.

Cabinfever97 01-08-2020 01:20 PM

Thirsty Owl is VERY pet friendly. That has stuck in my mind ever since being there. You can take them inside with you.

dbutton 01-08-2020 02:28 PM

Our home town. All the above recommendations are great. If you have any specific questions feel free to ask.

JP Camper 01-08-2020 02:32 PM

We have camped on site #11 several years in a row for a week leading into Labor Day. Site #11 is directly below site #1 and share the same electric post and water spigot. I would always fill my tank and unhook the water hose and just roll it pinto a neat pile and cap it, never left it hooked up. THEY WILL remind you not to leave it hooked up if they happen to see it. As was stated, you will be best parking parallel to the road, it is perhaps the smallest of all sites but it is not a bad site. NOTE!!!! The site post does come out of the ground allowing you to park without it being in your way, just be sure to put it back once set up.
Since your park pass allows access to all State Parks during your stay, take the trip over to Watkins Glen and check out the Gorge over there if you have time, it's not a bad drive.

wgbalogh 01-08-2020 03:35 PM

Robert H.Treman
Love this campground it's been many years since I've been there. Driving through the stream to the campsite is cool. This might be a helpful website if you haven't already checked it out. Dave McGrath does a great job of posting most campgrounds in New York State. Love Ithaca NY BTW

Theo 01-08-2020 04:11 PM

Thanks, dbutton and JP Camper!


Originally Posted by JP Camper (Post 2248908)
{snip}...As was stated, you will be best parking parallel to the road, it is perhaps the smallest of all sites but it is not a bad site...{snip}

From the online photos, it looks like it's almost a tight drive-thru. Perhaps enter on the uphill curve "path" (see photo, in background beyond number post) and pull inside the site number post, parallel to the road. Then park the TV perpendicularly between sites #1 and #2???

Site #1 looking back (SE) toward the "uphill curve":
(photo courtesy of

gkehman 01-08-2020 06:30 PM

Truman SP
All of the information provided in the posts is spot on! We did this trip last year from Southern Maryland and loved it. I don't know where you are traveling from but we did a loop that included Ricketts Glenn, Watkins Glen, Letchworth and then to Niagra Falls. All the campground stops were only 3-4 hours apart and easy driving. Anyone who has yet to visit Ricketts Glenn needs to add it to your list. There are 22 significant waterfalls on a six mile hike. Beautiful.1 Enjoy your trip. There are a lot of waterfalls in the area.

JP Camper 01-08-2020 09:09 PM

FYI, driving through the stream is no longer a “ perk”, they built a bridge over it 2 yrs ago

wgbalogh 01-09-2020 07:36 AM

I figured as much, I wondered how long driving through the stream would be allowed. Thanks for the info :)

JWood422 01-09-2020 07:50 AM

I have no experience camping in that area. However, my in-laws are from upstate New York. The area y’all are describing is spectacular. I’ve been to Thirsty Owl Winery and several others including Wagner. If you get the chance to go to Keuka Lake it’s spectacular. I want to take our tt to that area but I’m not ready for that long of a trip from South Carolina pulling it. I envy you and your family. Y’all have fun and please post pictures!
Oh, try to go boating on any of the Finger Lakes. Seriously. They’re magnificent.

sherman12 01-09-2020 12:57 PM

Theo, yes parking parallel or on an angle will work best for site one. This is the first site we stayed on the first time camping at RT and we had no problem with our 33' class A and toad at that time. We arrived after dark the first weekend of November and it took us over a half-hour trying to find the site in the pitch dark. When I came up to the water crossing I almost slammed into a tree trying to stop as fast as I could. I didn't know it was only a couple of inches deep and you drove through the water to get to the campground. Sorta sad they built the bridge but I don't think I was the only one to get the gee'bers first seeing it.

Villagerjjm 01-09-2020 10:42 PM

You are going to be within the Finger Lakes region. You will have access to some of the best wineries in the continental United States. The beauty of the area is beyond compare. It is a Destination! Lucky You! If you have the time, go to the Windmill between Seneca and Canandaigua lakes. Go to Seneca Falls and walk the town that was the model for the movie It’s A Wonderful Life. Check out the NYS Campgrounds on Seneca, Cayuga, Canandaigua and Keuka Lakes. Go to the little villages like Aurora and feel the history knock you in the head like deja video. Look.... and you will see that God himself placed his hand on Earth in that region. I live in Florida now, but I will always walk in the Finger Lakes, and I return there every year if even for just a day.

PatrickY 01-09-2020 10:51 PM

ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL part of the country.

The Finger Lakes is one of my favorite parts of NY (I grew up there and spent probably 2 combined years of my life tent camping in that area).

If you have a camera with an adjustable shutter speed try to be at one of the many water falls as the sun in going down, slow down the shutter and take a photo - the "stream effect" combined with the trees, rocks and sunset can be stunning - worth blowing up, printing and putting in a frame on the wall.

Enjoy your trip!


sherman12 01-10-2020 09:23 AM

X2 on the entire Finger Lakes Region. Our favorite is Keuka Lake and camping several times a year at Keuka Lake State Park, sometimes just as an overnight coming from Buffalo, NY area, and charming Hammondsport.

The Windmill is on Rt. 14A about 12-14 miles from Watkins Glen, 10 miles outside of Penn Yan, Keuka Lake, and about a 40-minute drive from Ithaca. There are dozens of flea market type shops, many set up in yard type sheds. Feast on many many fresh baked goods and delicacies from the Amish and food vendors. Windmill is like a semi-permanent summer long weekends only craft show worth going to.

Theo 01-12-2020 02:35 PM

Excellent info!

I am a photographer so that is part of the reason we are camping at the SP instead of staying in local lodging.

Unfortunately, we only have 3-nights since my more intelligent half must be at work first thing when we return. OTOH, I'm retired and can't wait for the time she is as well!


PatrickY 01-12-2020 04:31 PM

Theo - if you get any spectacular water falls photos and don't mind sharing please PM me for my email … I'd love to have some memories of my old stomping grounds ...

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