Hiking NY – Watkins Glen State Park Falls Trail – July 2020

Watkins Glen State Park falls trail is an easy, 3.02-mile hike that takes you along many waterfalls in the gorge. Has spectacular photo opportunities behind the falls and a great place to go with family as the trail is suitable for all ages. Unlike Buttermilk Falls and Taugannock Falls, there is no swimming or walk area on the water. With COVID-19, the park and trails are open but the trails are one way around the gorge. Come from Spring to Fall as the trails in the gorge are closed during the winter months.

This place tends to be very popular and crowded, come early to avoid the crowds.


  • Waterfall
  • Picnic Area
  • Wild Flower

Table of Contents

Fun Fact(s):

First opened in July 4, 1863 to visitors and than later being converted into a NY State Park in 1906.

Weather Forecast:

Getting Here:

Below is location of the South Entrance parking lot. Standard NY State Parks fee of $8 parking charge. Click on ‘Directions’ to get a Google Maps route to here.

Official Maps:

Trail Map, Elevation and Statistics

Total distance: 4.17 mi
Max elevation: 1064 ft
Min elevation: 722 ft
Total climbing: 507 ft

Trail Guide:

  1. [0.0 miles] Trail entrance is located to the right of the main park’s building. It will immediately take you on a downward path.
  2. [0.39 miles] Takes the staircase down to the Gorge Trail to see the waterfalls.
  3. [2.37 miles] Turn left over the bridge. At the end of the bridge go left again heading back towards South Parking Lot.
  4. [3.07 miles] End


Start of the Gorge Trail from the South Parking lot.

Beautiful gorge walls created from many years of scouring of the land as water levels receded.

First of many falls on the trail. It really is a spectacular and easy hike to go on.

Yes, the trail going behind this first fall for an awesome experience feeling the sheer energy of the waterfall.

Another cool spot of cascading waterfalls and water falling from above just past the trail.

Last waterfall before switching over to the exit trail through the woods.

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