RV Destination: New York’s Letchworth State Park

 RV Destination: New York’s Letchworth State Park

Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park in NY

One of the nicest state parks we’ve found anywhere in the country is the 14,000 acre Letchworth State Park, 35 miles southwest of Rochester and about 60 miles south of Buffalo. Often dubbed as “the Grand Canyon of the East,” Letchworth offers easily accessible and spectacular views of a deep, 600-foot gorge carved out of the limestone and sandstone shale by the Genesee River.

Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park in NY
Middle Falls at Letchworth State Park in NY

Suggested to us as we were making our way from Michigan to Cape Cod by Roadtreking regular W. Dan Hulchanski, Jennifer and I overnighted there and spent the evening and the morning of the next day hiking and photographing the amazing scenery during a picture postcard perfect June weekend.

Besides the gorge, the park boasts a series of spectacular waterfalls, the three major ones called the Upper, Middle, and Lower Falls,  located in Portage Canyon, the southern section of the park, about 10 miles from the 350-site campground.

Roads are canopied and take you right next to the gorge. That's our Roadtrek Etrek going over a stone bridge
Roads are canopied and take you right next to the gorge. That’s our Roadtrek Etrek going over a stone bridge

Millions of years of geological history can be observed in the rock formations exposed by erosion.

Many marine fossils can be found here, as the rock was laid down in an ancient inland sea. – See more at: http://nysparks.com/parks/79/nature-up-close.aspx#sthash.ThPBzS7r.dpuf
Many marine fossils can be found here, as the rock was laid down in an ancient inland sea. – See more at: http://nysparks.com/parks/79/nature-up-close.aspx#sthash.ThPBzS7r.dpuf
Many marine fossils can be found here, as the rock was laid down in an ancient inland sea. – See more at: http://nysparks.com/parks/79/nature-up-close.aspx#sthash.ThPBzS7r.dpuf
Many marine fossils can be found here, as the rock was laid down in an ancient inland sea. – See more at: http://nysparks.com/parks/79/nature-up-close.aspx#sthash.ThPBzS7r.dpuf
Many marine fossils can be found here, as the rock was laid down in an ancient inland sea. – See more at: http://nysparks.com/parks/79/nature-up-close.aspx#sthash.ThPBzS7r.dpuf

The region’s rich heritage of the Seneca Indians is well-documented in the park with displays, a restored Seneca Council House and the grave of Mary Jemison, an American frontierswoman who was captured by the Seneca Indians while a teenager but later chose to remain a Seneca.

This is Inspiration Point, which offers a great view of the Upper Falls (at top of photo) and the Middle Falls
This is Inspiration Point, which offers a great view of the Upper Falls (at top of photo) and the Middle Falls

Swimming pools, fishing areas, hiking trails, hot air ballooning, whitewater rafting and canoeing by permit are just some of the additional attractions at Letchworth. The trails are well maintained and parallel the gorge and take you right up close enough to the waterfalls that you are cooled by the fine mist.

The biggest is the Middle Falls, which is 250 feet across and drops 107 feet

Well maintained paths and trails get you right up close to the falls
Well maintained paths and trails get you right up close to the falls

A full schedule of events is offered each year within the park. They range from festivals to lectures and guided walks, to the noted Fall Arts and Crafts Sale.

Tai enjoying the clean night air outside our Etrek at Letchworth State Park's campground
Tai enjoying the clean night air outside our Etrek at Letchworth State Park’s campground

Pets are welcome at the park, but are restricted to three loops of the campground. If you do bring a pet, make sure you have a copy of their rabies inoculation, as you won’t be allowed to register without. All sites have 30 amp hookups. Some have 50 amp for bigger RVs. The overnight rate for non-New York residents is $32.50, including park admission.

 

 

Mike Wendland

Mike is a veteran journalist who, with his wife, Jennifer, travels North America in a small motorhome, blogging about the people, places, joys and adventure of RV life on the road. He enjoys camping (obviously), hiking, biking, fitness, photography, kayaking, video editing, and all things dealing with technology and the outdoors. See and subscribe to his RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube, where he has hundreds of RV and travel related videos. His PC MIke TV reports, on personal technology are distributed weekly to all 215 NBC-TV stations.

32 Comments

  • such a thing of real deep beauty

  • Pretty

  • Fabulous place to camp. Lots to see and enjoy in that area!

  • Absolutely beautiful.

  • Looks real nice-will add to travel list

  • We will be in the New York area this Fall and will have check this out !

  • Wonder if thats also by that HAUNTED LETCHWORTH STATE HOSPITAL!! Pretty area

    • Letchworth State park is in Wyoming County and Letchworth Village is in Rockland County NY.

  • have been there–lovely

  • Only live 45 minutes away, need to visit again. There are beautiful parks and lakes in this area of New York, and many wineries too!

  • we visit several times a year.

  • A great place to visit for the day or for a week. My favourite time of year is the fall.

  • Roseanne Parzek would love to do that and Watkins Glenn and Corning glass and others

  • I love Letchworth State Park. It is a must see for anyone visiting NY.

  • Beautiful! … and powerful!

  • Thank you Donna Waldman Montez i was wondering

  • Love this park !

  • Iris Inn… still looking forward to an outing at Letchworth!!!!

  • Sorry Donna in ny also I’m from there and yes its a beautiful its Letchworth St park

  • That is so awesome

  • Did they take down the old railroad tressel? I don’t see it here ,but in my pictures we took it was in all of them.

  • Matt Greenwood…..looks fun!!

  • It is a beautiful park!

  • Best place!! Must do the 1000 steps! We went there 2 weeks ago?

  • Is that the place near Haverstraw? I once say a rendition of Fiddler on the roof in 1972 in Letchworth Village, a home for the IQ challenged.

  • Gary DeVoss, the trestle is still there!

  • Been there twice. Really worth the trip!! Beautiful!

  • There are three waterfalls there. It’s a great park and the Glen Iris Inn was/is a good place to eat.

  • I live about an hour away from there it is such a cool park a must see!!!

  • One of my favorite spots in NY

  • Letchworth is in my backyard, and I’ve grown up going there. So much of it was constructed by the CCC during the Depression. It’s beautiful and full of history. The Mt. Morris dam, near the campground, is also worth a visit

  • Matthew Long

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