Explore the most popular hiking trails in Letchworth State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

My family and I just returned from hiking the Letchworth Trail at Letchworth State Park. The previous/below reviews about this trail are all very accurate, so I'll try not to repeat the same information. This trail is very beautiful for its gentle up/down topography, frequent river crossings, and beautiful forests. It is, however, not what I expected in terms of views. I thought I would see a lot of overlooks of the gorge, waterfalls, and river. It does not offer that. The photos you see in brochures and websites of the upper, middle, and lower waterfalls are easily viewable by car/overlooks on the west side of the park . . . and are a must-see. Granted, we saw the falls at what must have been the hight of their water levels, and they were a rushing, spewing, fantastic display of nature. Better than Niagra Falls.

Due to high water levels (there was a three-hour rain storm prior to our hitting the trail, perhaps that caused it?), many of the river crossings were difficult. I mean like "should-we-turn-back" difficult. One crossing was so dangerous, we needed to shimmy on our butts across a large fallen log. Afterward we laughed about how filthy our pants were, but honestly we were not prepared for all the water crossings. I would guess there are 50-75 crossings in total (about 4-5 per mile), many of which you could either hop right over, or have to place just one foot in the river. But there were at least 15 crossings that we were mid-calf deep. So be ready for hiking in soaking feet for long distances. We all wear WrightSox, so we didn't get any hot spots or blisters, thank God.

The lean-to's also were clean inside, fire pits were perfect, picnic tables were great.

But come to this hike well-prepared. We saw one other person the whole time we were there. You will be on your own. The Park Service staff is of no help. Even though you can reach them by phone at certain points on the trail, they are not at all familiar with the trail. We needed help with directions at a couple of key points on the trail and they said "I don't know what to tell you." The Mount Morris Visitor Center Rangers, however, were very helpful and knowledgable.

The yellow hashes painted on the trees and the mile markers are very well done. The trailhead signage is non-existent. After 30 minutes of searching for a trailhead in Portageville, we ended up hitching a ride with the fire department vehicle about three miles up the road and found a way into the park. Unfortunately, we missed a good chunk of the Southern part of the trail.

Great for a couple hour stroll. Plenty of places to stop and look over the gorge. Well maintained trails. An easy hike.

Did part of this with a loop toward the gorge to include the big bend and looped back. The main trail is an old road-- very flat for the part that I walked. It's an easy, if unremarkable, walk. No views at any point-- I went off the trail several times to see if there were any views when I could hear water but everything was obscured.

hiking
1 month ago

Little too close to the ridge, for you who are afraid of heights, but otherwise nice trail to the bridge and back (up the hill!)

The gorge and 3 waterfalls are spectacular features of this trail. The trail however is often too close to the main park road and not well marked especially in those spots where you need guidance.

A lot of these reviews are not the Letchworth Trail, they are of Letchworth State Park which is not the same. The Letchworth Trail is a portion of the much longer Fingerlakes Trail (about 500 miles long) that runs from one end of Letchworth to the other on the east side of the Genesee River (the opposite side of where you have access to the lower, middle, and upper falls). Can be started from either end and is roughly 23 miles long. There are no bathrooms/water refill areas but they have 2 lean to shelters to reserve if you were to make a 2 day backpacking trip to complete the entire trail which my husband and I did. That is all that is out there. If you plan on staying overnight at the shelter(s) you need to call the park and request a permit and reserve the shelter you want for that night. You need to also get permission from the Mount Morris Dam to park your car there overnight- very easy. We started at the Mount Morris end and came out at the Parade Grounds in the Park. The trail is very well parked with yellow paint on the trees. Going in that direction the first lean to shelter is roughly 6 miles in and the second is roughly 8 more miles in (14 miles from the start of the trail). The lean to is good size and there’s also a picnic table and campfire ring at each site. You are not allowed tents or hammocks and as stated before there is nothing out there- no water, no bathrooms. Leave no trace ethics! Bring all the water you need or boil it from the streams. We had 3 hydrapacks of water and used almost all of that for a 2 day hike. At the campsite we boiled water needed so we didn’t use our reserve. Bring everything you need with you, but keep in mind there are no garbage cans either so any trash comes back out with you also. Have a bear safe for food or hang your food in a tree - we did encounter a mama bear with 3 cubs about 4 miles in. There are a lot of switchbacks but really beautiful scenery, a few gorgeous overviews along the way. The lean tos are very good size- probably sleep 4 comfortably. They are 3 sided wooden structures so one side is completely open. I opted to bring a very large mosquito net with hooks- the lean to has nails and hooks in there that made it easy for me to hang it up. Def recommend that to at least keep the bugs off at night. One thing that I would take with me next time would be one of those chairs that you swirl around and fill with air (not sure what they are officially called) because i don’t find a picnic bench very comfortable after a very long hike and chairs would be too heavy to carry. Those seem like a great option to carry weight wise and you just deflate and fold up and stick in your backpack. Would have been nice to have one to relax in around the campfire after a long hike and even an option to sleep on more comfortable than a sleeping pad. Be alert- there are bears there and know how to respond to keep yourself safe. Had a great time would do it again! Added photos also of some views, some of the trail, and also of the shelters.

very rough. expect a lot of ups and downs. moderate is putting it lightly. great trail though.

I have really enjoyed the hike... Upper and middle falls are really close and its not much of a hike, the walk to lower falls is nice the canyon gets deeper and lot of pine trees around its really nice... After the hike dont forget to drive in park road and stop at all the scenic lookout points you will love itt.... Opps I forgot to mention that the middle falls has a rainbow... :), I would love to go back in fall..!!

This is by far one of the best state parks I've been to. A true gem in the state of New York. Plenty of trails and scenic views that take your breath away. If you are looking for a fun getaway this is the place to be.

What a great short hike, portage to the foot bridge. Breath taking views of the falls and the foot bridge over the Genesee river. Easy for kids and new hikers.

FYI the Portageville entrance is closed.

Trail head to the left of the toll booths at the Mt Morris entrance to the park as you enter. Park at the small 4-5 car lot to the right just outside of the entrance before the tolls (but still make sure to pay the entrance fee and support the park). First 2/3 of the trail is an easy mix of light forest and open air hiking sandwiched between the gorge rim and Park Rd. Yellow blazes are not plentiful, though intersections are marked well with yellow arrows, so just need to pay attention. Last 1/3 of the trail is a more strenuous forest hike with elevation changes, overgrowth, and bugs. My hiking partner wanted to avoid doing the more challenging forest portion on the way back, so we just walked along Park Rd until we met back up with the trail where we originally entered the woods for the last 1/3 of the hike (see my recording). Views of the Mt Morris Dam and other overlooks. A decent hike, you really can't go wrong with any of the trails at Letchworth.

Too many people for my liking, more easy than moderate I’d say, not the best views for the majority of the hike and not well marked at the entrance near the visitor’s center. I do suggest walking down to the footbridge though.

hiking
2 months ago

A good portion of this trail you are following a gravel road to get from one trail to the other. To avoid this, follow the blue markers until you see yellow markers to your right. Follow these until you get to the overlook at the river (Have to travel a little off path). This was the best portion of the trail, so at this point I would just turn around and go back. Overall, a nice place to see a different side of Letchworth away from the crowds.

Nice easy walk through the woods. We did an out and back total of 4.5 mi from the Mt. Morris Dam & Recreation area. All “scenic” views were within the first half mile or so. Bring big spray if you’re going further than that as the mosquitoes got pretty bad. Tip: you’ll save the $10 entrance fee if you don’t enter through the Park Rd. side of the park first, stay on this (the south side) of the park and you’ll be good.

Falls are amazing and worth the stop. I recommend a picnic lunch in one of the quiet parks then hit a few of the walks. The cons of this state park are it's super crowded and some trails are beat up and could use maintenance. Besides some of the longer walks it's really more for kids and tourists.

Falls are amazing and worth the stop. I recommend a picnic lunch in one of the quiet parks then hit a few of the walks. The cons of this state park are it's super crowded and some trails are beat up and could use maintenance. Besides some of the longer walks it's really more for kids and tourists.

Great trail. Started at Mt. Morris. Hiked 6 miles south and then back to dam. Very well marked with great views. All forest and overlooks.

there is not camping on this trail. All Trails is such a piece of shit sometimes

The trails to the upper falls and middle falls are blocked/closed due to construction. Very pretty view but wasn’t able to do any hiking.

Bring bug repellent!

3 months ago

Great trail to include views of the falls. Went out for the day with a group of friends. Bring water in summer! Would recommend.

Took Gorge trail. Broke a sweat more than anticipated. Good scenic trail to include the waterfalls. Great trail to do with friends!

absolutely terrible for hiking, its essentially a children's park...

It is definitely not just a walk and deserves its rank as moderate. Today both ends were blocked for construction so you can't access the south side of the trail but it ended up being a 5.26 mile hike. The impressive views never disappoint.

See the Upper and Middle Falls by parking close and walking to them like everyone else is going to do...it’s a stretch to call it a hike. For actual hiking away from the crowds, user the lower falls as your trailhead.

I really enjoyed this park. Great Waterfalls and canyons. It does have some light hiking trails but its mostly walking on paved or gravel.

Great falls, got here late Saturday on Memorial Day weekend was able to get to the falls. Amazing sights will be back to do more trails around the park.

The views into the valley is why this was the most beautiful trail I've been on. It is truly breathtaking.

Load More