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Finger Lakes Trail Events

The Winter edition of the Finger Lakes Trail News magazine arrived in our mail box recently. and as always was filled with interesting articles. I wanted to share a few with you.

On page 6 was an article about Ron Abraham, who completed his End-to-End hike of the main Finger Lakes Trail, and all of the Branch trails in 2018. Ron has joined Springwater Trails several times and was kind enough to mention us in the article.

On page 25 is a quick teaser about the FLTC Spring Weekend in Bradford, PA. There will be opportunities that weekend to hike, bike and kayak in Allegany State Park over the three days (June 7, 8 and 9) of the weekend at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford.

On page 26 is an add for chainsaw training in May. This two day course is required to allow you to use a chain saw while maintaining hiking trails within the Finger Lakes Trail system, or on state land. It is also valuable if you have a chain saw and would like to use it safely. Training will take place May 4-5 and May 18-19. John took the course last year. If you are interested, talk with me at any hike or at info@springwatertrails.org.

The next Howard Beye Hike sponsored by the FLTC occurs Saturday, Jan 19, 2019. The hike will be 4.5 miles on the Onondaga Branch Trail through Morgan Hill State Forest. If you are interested in carpooling, we would need to leave Saturday morning at about 6:45 from the Springwater Town Hall. You can leave a comment on this post, or contact me at info@springwatertrails.org to help organize a carpool.

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Welcome to the Gutenberg Editor

Hi Everyone,

This post was created by the WordPress staff to introduce the new Post editor on our website.  If you post a story about a hike you led (if you lead a hike, this is a great way to tell us all how it went) then you will be using the new editor.  Next week you will see a post that I am writing about the same editor – maybe two views will help you understand the editor. – Mark

Of Mountains & Printing Presses

The goal of this new editor is to make adding rich content to WordPress simple and enjoyable. This whole post is composed of pieces of content—somewhat similar to LEGO bricks—that you can move around and interact with. Move your cursor around and you’ll notice the different blocks light up with outlines and arrows. Press the arrows to reposition blocks quickly, without fearing about losing things in the process of copying and pasting.

What you are reading now is a text block the most basic block of all. The text block has its own controls to be moved freely around the post…

… like this one, which is right aligned.

Headings are separate blocks as well, which helps with the outline and organization of your content.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Handling images and media with the utmost care is a primary focus of the new editor. Hopefully, you’ll find aspects of adding captions or going full-width with your pictures much easier and robust than before.

Beautiful landscape
If your theme supports it, you’ll see the “wide” button on the image toolbar. Give it a try.

Try selecting and removing or editing the caption, now you don’t have to be careful about selecting the image or other text by mistake and ruining the presentation.

The Inserter Tool

Imagine everything that WordPress can do is available to you quickly and in the same place on the interface. No need to figure out HTML tags, classes, or remember complicated shortcode syntax. That’s the spirit behind the inserter—the (+) button you’ll see around the editor—which allows you to browse all available content blocks and add them into your post. Plugins and themes are able to register their own, opening up all sort of possibilities for rich editing and publishing.

Go give it a try, you may discover things WordPress can already add into your posts that you didn’t know about. Here’s a short list of what you can currently find there:

  • Text & Headings
  • Images & Videos
  • Galleries
  • Embeds, like YouTube, Tweets, or other WordPress posts.
  • Layout blocks, like Buttons, Hero Images, Separators, etc.
  • And Lists like this one of course 🙂

Visual Editing

A huge benefit of blocks is that you can edit them in place and manipulate your content directly. Instead of having fields for editing things like the source of a quote, or the text of a button, you can directly change the content. Try editing the following quote:

The editor will endeavour to create a new page and post building experience that makes writing rich posts effortless, and has “blocks” to make it easy what today might take shortcodes, custom HTML, or “mystery meat” embed discovery.

Matt Mullenweg, 2017

The information corresponding to the source of the quote is a separate text field, similar to captions under images, so the structure of the quote is protected even if you select, modify, or remove the source. It’s always easy to add it back.

Blocks can be anything you need. For instance, you may want to add a subdued quote as part of the composition of your text, or you may prefer to display a giant stylized one. All of these options are available in the inserter.

You can change the amount of columns in your galleries by dragging a slider in the block inspector in the sidebar.

Media Rich

If you combine the new wide and full-wide alignments with galleries, you can create a very media rich layout, very quickly:

Accessibility is important — don’t forget image alt attribute

Sure, the full-wide image can be pretty big. But sometimes the image is worth it.

The above is a gallery with just two images. It’s an easier way to create visually appealing layouts, without having to deal with floats. You can also easily convert the gallery back to individual images again, by using the block switcher.

Any block can opt into these alignments. The embed block has them also, and is responsive out of the box:

You can build any block you like, static or dynamic, decorative or plain. Here’s a pullquote block:

Code is Poetry

The WordPress community

If you want to learn more about how to build additional blocks, or if you are interested in helping with the project, head over to the GitHub repository.


Thanks for testing Gutenberg!

👋

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New WordPress Editor

Yesterday I received word that the Springwater Trails website has been upgraded to WordPress version 5.0.

The major change in this version is a new editor. When you create or edit a Post you will be using the new editor.  This occurs if you want to write about a hike we have taken – for example, if you lead a hike and would like to describe how it went and include some pictures.

Here are some of the changes to the editor. 

Melissa and Donna go over the edge
  • The editor seems much cleaner. In other words, things you are used to seeing around the editor box on your screen have moved and you will need to hunt for them.  So far, I haven’t noticed anything missing, but you will need to look.
    • Specifically the right side shows Document and Block tabs.  The default is Block, which contains settings for the current block – often a block is just a paragraph, but more later.
    • Most of the old settings are under the Document Tab.
    • Above the editor region is a short menu on the left and a “Publish” menu on the right.  If you want to save your Post to come back to later, you can “Save Draft”.  That way, only you can see it when you go to the Dashboard and click on Posts->All Posts. If you “Publish” then it becomes available to the public on the website, although you can still come back and edit it.  
    • We rarely change the date that a post is published. If you want to do that, the publish date is on the Document tab.
  • The editor uses blocks. Generally, when you press the Enter key at the end of a Paragraph, the editor will create a new block for you.  The idea is you then can easily move your blocks around, without concern about what is inside them.  Unfortunately, I can’t figure out how to move blocks except by switching to the Code Editor and cutting and pasting the block.

More info later, as I learn.

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Canal history article (Westside News, June 3, 2002)

Friends of Genesee Valley Greenway (FOGVG) some years back (June 15, 2002) sponsored two guided interpretive hikes of eastern Letchworth State Park, including some info about the geology of the area and info about Genesee Valley Canal of long ago.  A June 3, 2002 article about these hikes ran in the Westside News (a newspaper of Spencerport and perhaps some other outlying western suburbs of Rochester).  The article contents are here:

Canal history focus of two Greenway Walks

Two of the area’s most well known and respected canal historians will both be leading walks on the Genesee Valley Greenway within Letchworth State Park on the afternoon of Saturday, June 15. Each event will focus on a separate aspect of the history of the Genesee Valley Canal which played a major role in the development of western New York and transported passengers, agricultural products, gypsum, lumber, and manufactured goods from 1840 to 1878 between the Erie Canal in Rochester and the Allegany River near Olean.

At 2 p.m., Dave Kipp, Genesee Valley Canal historian, and author of Locking the Heights: The Rise and Demise of the Genesee Valley Canal, will share his extensive knowledge of the canal’s history during a walk along the canal towpath next to stone canal locks #54 to 60. The locks are located within the one-mile section of Genesee Valley Greenway between Oakland and Short Tract Roads in the Town of Portage and are visible from Route 436 between Nunda and Portageville . This series of seven locks is the best preserved of 17 locks built to negotiate the change in elevation between the Keshequa Creek Valley in Nunda and the glacial moraine in Portage. This walk will begin at the Greenway’s Oakland Road parking area, located at the intersection of Oakland Road and Route 436, 1.5 miles west of Nunda .

At 3:30 p.m., Tom Grasso , Genesee Valley Canal historian and lecturer and president of the Canal Society of New York State, will lead a two-mile walk along the former canal towpath (now Genesee Valley Greenway ) from the Letchworth State Park Parade Grounds to the famous Slide Area and Portage Hill Tunnel. Grasso , a geologist, will explain how the land forms and geology of the area challenged and directed the efforts of canal builders. Grasso will describe how the Slide Area was formed and why it created never-ending maintenance expenditures for canal and railroad operators. Grasso will also discuss the tunnels envisioned and started by the canal builders, the pinning of the canal to the top of the gorge walls, and the means chosen to cross an ancient river bed. The walk will begin at the Letchworth State Park Parade Grounds parking lot on the east side of the park.

After the walks, the Friends of the Genesee Valley Greenway will host a silent auction, chicken barbecue and barn dance at Ravenwood Farms, located one-half mile north of Route 436 at 9174 Short Tract Road in the Town of Portage. Short Tract Road is 2.5 miles west of Nunda . 

An historic 1919 report of the American Scenic and Historic Preservation Society, transmitted to the NYS Legislature in April 1920.

Each year the Society published an annual report reviewing activities in each of the parks and historical sites they oversaw.  One such report was the 25th annual report, which contains a interesting look at the young Letchworth State Park.  The Society operated Letchworth State Park from the time of William Prior Letchworth’s death, (December 1, 1910) until 1930.  Letchworth had gifted the park in 1907 to NYS, subject only to his life use and tenancy.