Sunday, September 27, 2009

To the Lighthouse

I have always been fascinated with lighthouses. Luckily, there are many in coastal New England. Even our wedding was next to a light house. Now for the first time, we have combined lighthouses and bicycles.

This is the red and white Nauset Light, operational since 1837. It is a short but very hilly coastal ride from where we are staying. From Nauset Light, a narrow bicycle trail through the woods leads to a truly unusual sight: the Three Sisters.

The Three Sisters stand in a semicircle in clearing in the woods: three small, pristine-white lighhouses. My camera is not wide angle enough to capture all three together - but here are two of them, with the Co-Habitant cycling in between.

The site is so quiet and unexpected; it has an almost mystical quality to it. Here I am next to the Middle Sister.

Miles and Marianne in front of the smallest sister. The Three Sisters are the only station in the U.S. designated by three lighthouse towers. Read more about their history here.

11 comments:

  1. We love lighthouses too. My favorite is still the Mukilteo Lighthouse in Washington State. Thanks for bringing up the memories.

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  2. Just looked up the Mukilteo lighthouse - beautiful. I have never been to the West Coast, but would love to visit Washington State, Oregon, and Northern California. One of my favourite lighthouses is the Nubble Light in York, Maine. It is positioned on a dramatic cliff overlooking the ocean, and the light always shines on it just so.

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  3. Nice Virginia Woolf reference. Didn't see any lighthouses on my rail trail adventure. Can't wait to go back and try the national seashore section. Thanks again for the help with a bike shop. I would recommend the one in Orleans. They were really helpful and friendly. Although I will say this was my first experience with a bike shop that doesn't regularly see vintage bikes. The only connection for the guy working there was "oh yeah my dad has an old schwinn that for some crazy reason he loves to ride." I left feeling like I had a treasured secret in my old Sprite!

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  4. Fil, thanks so much for the ongoing travelogue! Wish we were there. We have two lights in our locale, the Sabine Pass light, Civil War era, and the Bolivar light, just across the pass from Galveston, Tx, circa 1900. Can't ride a bike to either, as the one in way out on a spit with only water or marsh buggy access, and the Bolivar light is now privately owned, someone lives in the keeper's house. Who doesn't love lights, and thanks for showing us the ones in your neighborhood.

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  5. Cape Cod, lighthouses, bicycles, berets - all together! Those pictures show the simple, tasteful good life :)

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  6. JEP - Glad you liked it. The thing about bike shops on the Cape, is that they cater to tourists. So there is a good selection of rentals, good service, and a standard range of the typical modern bikes for sale. But I wouldn't expect to find a vintage bike there, and I wouldn't bring a vintage bike in for service. Having said that, many people in Provincetown ride vintage 3-speeds and road bikes around town, and they must be buying them somewhere. My guess is, there is a vintage bike shop somewhere; I just haven't found it yet.

    Next time you are in the area, try the Provincelands bike trails. They are very hilly, but take you through the dunes and offer some of the best views on the Cape. You can even watch the sunset over the ocean.

    Dave - I admit that I had to force the Texas->lighthouse association; but of course Texas does have a significant shoreline. Thanks for that; I have never been to those parts.

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  7. Dottie - Thanks : ) I am addicted to berets and other types of weird hats. Now that it's Fall, I can finally let loose my hat mania. Yesss!

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  8. Nice pix! Our Massachusetts lighthouse map has an illustration of the Sisters made from an early 20th century photos when they were in their original location. They're so cute!

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  9. Did you know there's also a "Three Sisters" in Oregon? These are mountains though. The nearby town is named Sisters as well.

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  10. Mostly Silent Partner - Thanks for the link to the lighthouse map; we will be making good use of it.

    Mumbleboy - I did not know about Three Sisters in Oregon; wonder if its anywhere near Twin Peaks.

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