Thursday, August 23, 2018

Lower Falls and Inspiration Point Letchworth State Park

Genesee River Gorge,
Wyoming Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Lower Falls Trail/Footbridge Trail

Total Time: 0:40 hour
Estimated Distance: 1.0 Miles

Pros: Scenic Waterfall and Narrow Gorge Scenery
Cons: Lots of people
Level of Difficulty: Moderate

On my last full day camping at Letchworth State Park, I went to the Lower Falls area. This is the smallest of the waterfalls among the Genesee River Gorge, but is very scenic in a very dramatic area in the gorge. I parked in the Lower Falls area, walking through the picnic area to the edge where there is a fence and somewhat of a view of the falls area. At this point I took the Lower Falls Trail, which goes down to the gorge in a series of steps. I took this to the falls area, where the trail ends at a dead end. This area was extremely muddy, but also featured an amazing rainbow over a grassy knoll, creating a surreal feeling.

I then turned aroudn and took the trail down to the bridge crossing over the Gorge, at the only trail bridge crossing in the entire park. This area of the gorge is very narrown, with sheet canyon walls and strange rock formations. I took this trail a bit longer then turned around, climbed up the large rock platform overlooking the gorge, then climbed back up the steps and went back to my car.

I had originally intended to hike from the Lower Falls along the Gorge Trails to Inspiration Point, which is an overlook high above the gorge where both the middle and upper falls are in sight, with the rail brige high above in the distance. I ran out of time, so instead parked at Inspiration Point at Park Road, and walked around the area and took pictures from there.

Map of the Rute

View of the Gorge Area and Bridge Across the River

Lower Falls Trail Steps

Me at the Lower Falls, Covered in Mist from the Falls

Lower Falls

Rainbow at the Lower Falls

High Volume of Muddy Water at the Lower Falls

Me Catching a Rainbow at the Lower Falls

Lower Falls from a Distance

Footbridge Trail Crossing the River

Raging Genesee River in the Narrow Gorge

Strange Rock Formations in the River

Middle Falls from Inspiration Point

Middle and Upper Falls from Inspiration Point

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