Letchworth State Park
Milage: About 7 round trip (if you do it my way)
Rise: About 330 ft Directions
Hike time: About 5 hrs with 2 adults 4 kids Facebook
Their are two big attractions this park has to offer as far as I am concerned, the canyon and the falls. The Park has made a 7 mile ONE WAY trail to see it all. The problem is you have to walk back to the the beginning when your done. First on this trail is all the canyon vistas, TIP: you can drive to each one, their are enough that you will start driving past them. Next, is the massive water falls. You can mostly drive to these as well, but we are hikers, so get out of the car already. Start your hike at the lower falls, you can park right there, and your hike back is about 1/3 the time it took to go to the top. So your 14 mile hike just turned into a pleasant 7 miler. This is a massive park that has restaurants and gifts shops, also a very dark night sky. Beware of a fee to enter the park, when you see how much roads they have to pave you will understand why. Read below…
1. Scroll the mouse over the altitude line to see where it lines up on the map
2. Click on the flags for more information
3. Click on the pictures to make them large
The trail here is fairly well groomed, not too rugged. At about 0.5 miles a trail cuts off to the left and takes you down a set of stone steps. This will bring you to the stone bridge crossing, the lower falls and most of the time rejoins the first trail you were on. On our visit the trail was washed out beyond the lower falls, so we had to go back to the original split, not a big deal.
After the lower falls the trail leads you into the forest. Again the trail is fairly easy with lots of views of the canyon and the river, But be careful their are no fences and you will surely die if you went over the edge.
After leaving the forest you reach Inspirational point where you get a long distance view of falls #2, #3, and the large railroad bridge. Their is parking at this area if needed. Much closer views of all of these ahead.
The close up of falls number two is in 2 stages, the front and the back. The day before this trip their was a large rain storm so the falls were booming. Notice the lush green vegetation from the constant misting of the area, and if you stand in the mist for a few minutes you will be soaked, great for a hot day.
It is not far from the middle falls to the upper falls.
Like the other falls the top has an observation platform. Beyond the platform is with a set of stone steps that leads to the road, railroad bridge, and to the end of the hike (except for the hike back).
The vulture came out to see us off. This was a great hike and great experience. The waters run heavy in the spring, so that might be a good time to see the best falls. It is most likely a long drive to come out here, but this park has camping, a great night sky, and falls that light up during the night, so stay awhile. It is worth the time it takes to come up here.