Monday, April 22, 2013

Watkins Glen State Park

Watkins Glen State Park is located at the edge of the village of Watkins Glen, New York, south of Seneca Lake. It is the most famous of the Finger Lakes States Parks, with a reputation of leaving visitors spellbound.
Within two miles, the glen's stream descends 400 feet past 200-foot cliffs and sculpted rock, generating 19 waterfalls and cascades along it's course. Rim trails overlook the gorge.

This is a trip we did with my cousins going way back to 2007. I always thought I should do a blog about this gorgeous place but never got around to it. As they say, better late than never. It's just too beautiful of a place not to share!
 I must say that I am blessed with the greatest "bunch" of cousins and we have gone to places I probably would never get to otherwise. This is one of those places I had never heard of and one of these years my husband and I would love to take a trip back here.  We would love to do some hiking and look for some more waterfalls......and perhaps visit a few of the more than 100 wineries in the Finger Lakes region.

The best way to view the Glen is to ascend the 1.5 mile gorge trail from the main entrance which starts in the village of Watkins Glen to the upper entrance and then return the same way or perhaps a rim trail.
 Our bus took us to the upper entrance so we hiked back down to the village. I think the picture above was taken at the bottom of the first set of steps known as Jacobs Ladder. The park has over 800 steps but fortunately we were going down instead of up!


There are many pools and cascades in the glen.

There's the trail winding along on the left side.

Pluto Falls






I love the stone bridges and how they blend in with the natural surroundings. It's hard to tell where the man-made walls start and end.

Rainbow Falls
This was my favorite place in the gorge.






Central Cascade





Minnehaha Falls with Cavern Cascade in the distance.

Here's a closer look at a heart shaped pool at the base of Minnehaha.


Here the trail goes behind Cavern Cascade.
I may not have all the names correct of the waterfalls or in the right order.









Sentry Falls and Bridge.
If you start your hike at the main entrance this is the first waterfall you will see.


On that same trip we also stopped to see these falls in the Letchworth State Park. We were told there are three waterfalls here but we only went to two of them. These are the upper Falls.

The Middle Falls

These are also part of the middle falls.

The upper and middle falls are located at the same place. The lower falls are about two miles downstream and we did not get to them.  That will be on my list on the next trip.

17 comments:

  1. That is one glorious tour. Photos are fantastic. What a great place to see, the falls and rocks are so cool.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

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  2. These pictures sure make me want to go back and hike the gorge again. We have been very blessed to do these many trips together on a bus where we can be together. A big thanks goes to the cousin who owns a bus Co. to make these trips possible. So many good memories. Looking forward to our trip this summer.

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    1. I can't wait to go back! Yes.... A big thanks to Dave!!!

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  3. Thanks for this post...the Finger Lakes Region is on our list of places to visit and this certainly made me want to do it sooner rather than later!

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    1. You won't regret it Sharon. It is a beautiful place!

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  4. What an amazing place! My Father In Law used to drive bus and he would take the Amish to this place and if there would be room on the bus he would take our three boys along! Now your photos make me want to go too!!

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    1. If you like waterfalls you will love it!!

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  5. Such beautiful pictures Pearl! Paul and I went there after the cousins trip and we loved it. Thanks for another wonderful blog:)

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    1. It's fun going on the bus but we would like to go by ourselves sometime so we could also do some hiking.

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  7. Stunning! Thank you so much for sharing. A new vacation destination!

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    1. Your welcome....Hope you get to go sometime!

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  8. Oh My Goodness... We just HAVE to go there sometime. We did go to Letchworth one time --but have never been to Watkins Glen... Is there a season that is better than others to go there --when the water is flowing????? WOW--that is an incredible area. Thanks so much for sharing this with us...

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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    1. This is right up your alley Betsy. You would love it! I don't know about the best time to go but anytime there's been a lot of rain I'm sure. I meant to put in my post they are open from mid May-Oct. We were there in July.

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  9. Absolutely lovely. I have been to the Finger Lakes region once and would love to take a return trip.

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    1. Hope you get to return sometime Carolyn. You have a beautiful blog!

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