Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Watkins Glen State Park, NY

When I used to think of New York, I thought of New York City.  I had always heard that upstate New York was beautiful, but still the image the city is what came to my mind.  That was in the past, now I will think of scenes like this ---

The above was taken on the  Buttermilk Falls Gorge trail.  More on this hike later.

My visit started with rain.  So, I went to Corning and visited the Glass Museum.   The modern gallery had some interesting items made of glass. 

They also had displays of items made of glass a long time ago. The  items below were made between 1440 BC and 1085 BC. 

I watched a glass blowing demonstration (the pictures didn’t turn out too well) and a flame thrower demo.

The guy above made a dog out of glass in just a few minutes. 

The next day, I went to Buttermilk Falls State Park.  I hiked the gorge trail up the gorge and the rim trail back down.  I would have to guess that it is at least 300 – 400 stairs up the gorge, but it was well worth it!!

The first falls is right at the parking lot, so even those not hiking can see a great waterfall.  The trail was cut into the shale and limestone.


That same day, I visited Taughannock Falls State Park.  The first picture was taken from an overlook.  The second picture was taken from the end of the Gorge Trail.  This trail was level, which I needed after hiking Buttermilk Gorge.

I woke up the next morning, planning on getting to the entrance to Watkins Glen Gorge Trail around 8:00.  As I was pulling into the parking lot, a park volunteer followed me to my parking spot and pointed out that I had a tire almost flat.  I went to a close gas station and filled it up with air and went back to the park.  There I looked at the tire and could hear the air coming out.  So I quickly found a place to change the tire for me.  That put me a couple of hours late for my hike, but I headed on.

The Watkins Glen Gorge Trail has more than 800 steps and has several warning signs about the difficulty of the trail.  I headed on, the pictures I had seen were too beautiful to let a few steps stop me!  Again the trail is cut into the rocks.  Rocks and waterfalls, what more could I want in a trail!!

The entrance to the Gorge is a tunnel., one of several on the trail.

Did I mention the many stairs?  It actually wasn’t too bad because it was so beautiful I was stopping to admire and/or take pictures all the time.

The above waterfall was one of a couple that you walked under.  The picture was taken coming out of one of the tunnels.


Both Watkins Glen Gorge Trail and Buttermilk Gorge Trail were too beautiful for words.  My pictures do not do this area justice.  If you like waterfalls, I would strongly suggest adding this area to your list of places to visit. When I have more time I will come back to the Finger Lakes area in New York.   Much better pictures and information on these falls and others in New York can be found at www.nyfalls.com 

From here I headed to Letchworth State Park, which is where I currently am.  I’ll blog about this trip in a few days!


  1. Your posts and pictures keep bringing back childhood memories. We used to camp in all those places, but seems like it always rained when we were there!

  2. You're stomping in my grounds now. I worked in Watkins Glen and Ithaca, lived in Trumansburg. Just left that area after 32 years. The most exquisitely beautiful place when the sun shines. Like the little girl who had a little curl... when it's bad, it's horrid.

  3. These are some really gorgeous hikes you've been on. I love waterfalls so I will definitely be putting these spots on my list. Although, how about if I just caravan with you? I've liked all the spots you've been in and would be happy to just let you plan the route. :-)