North Rim and South Rim Red Trail Loop

MODERATE 312 reviews

North Rim and South Rim Red Trail Loop is a 5.4 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Schenectady, New York that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
5.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
820 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dog friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

muddy

old growth

Beautiful streams, step falls and 2 tall waterfalls. Forest views. Great top rope ice climbing in January-Feb. Plotter Kill Preserve is a nature preserve near Rotterdam, NY. The Plotter Kill, a tributary of the Mohawk River, flows through a very rugged gorge. The forest here contains a mix of hardwoods and confiers. There are three beautiful waterfalls. The Upper Falls is 60 feet; the Lower Falls and the Rynex Creek Falls are both 40 feet. Start on the red trail near the kiosk. Take the side trail (blue) which will take you to lookouts over the Upper and Lower falls. Continue on the red trail which crosses the Kill on a foot bridge. You will pass by the Upper and Lower falls. The trail goes down a switchback taking you to the top of the falls on the Rynex creek. Cross the creek here. If you have ample time, you can follow the red trail to the end of the preserve near the Thruway. There is a cascading waterfall there.

hiking
1 month ago

Took my sister here in spring and the falls were great. Easy walk though very muddy.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice trail and well maintained. Very end of the red loop has a blue loop not worth adding- takes you to a gravel pit and a culvert. Along the ridges entirely flat, with some up and downs at the ends.

hiking
2 months ago

Very nice hike. Some challenging parts. Climbs up and down the ravine and a few creek crossings which were a bit tricky because there was some ice on the rocks. Beautiful waterfalls. Dogs on and off leash. Easy to get off the trail...watch the markers.

hiking
3 months ago

It’s amazing to find so much nature including a beautiful waterfall so close to big cities

hiking
3 months ago

This was a great half day hike. We didn't walk super fast and had the pup with us. Some rooty but great trails. Did the full north/south loop. Disappointing part was no water

4 months ago

I followed the blue trail. Could hear the waterfall, but wasn't able to climb the stairs.

4 months ago

Nice trail. Many different ways to hike. No water in the falls but the scenery was beautiful.

4 months ago

the trail was beautiful but very hard to keep track of the markers. I wouldn't do this again bc of that.

hiking
4 months ago

After reading many reviews on the hike, I had to go see for myself! My boyfriend and I went today, following the red trail to the waterfalls. Parked at the Mariaville parking lot and took about 5 minutes to get to the first falls! Absolutely beautiful with the river being dried up. (There was no actual waterfall) continued onto the trail to the next waterfall, 5-10 min walk. Also dried up but took beautiful pics. Since that was quick we hiked the yellow trail from there. Super easy to follow. Marked everywhere despite any other review- u can't miss the markers/signs. All together great hike, not muddy today, and 1 and half adventure.

hiking
4 months ago

Very good trail. Some steep parts, but all doable. Along most of the trail, there are a lot of geocaches! Went in August; sadly, the waterfalls aren't very active because there isn't much rain. Would recommend going in the spring after the snow melts. Yet, it was still very fun. The one good thing about going in August is that you don't need to cross through water.

4 months ago

4 months ago

the red trail seems to just end. very easy to get lost. we scaled the side of the hill/ravine that was so steep we had to grasp roots and rocks but we were able to get to the orange/blue trail.
be mindful of footwear.... bring water....

hiking
5 months ago

Great time with the family. Had our two children 7 and 5 and finished in about 3 hours. Good time had by all.

trail running
5 months ago

My favorite place to go around the capital region. Good assortment of trails and plenty of elevation on different paths. The long red trail does have quite a few sharp turns in the path. If you ever look up and don't see a marker, turn around.

hiking
5 months ago

The red trail did "apparently" abruptly end ... I walked about 200 yards further on both sides of the stream ... 12 more people got "lost" at the exact same point while I was looking for the trail ... I worked my way back to the last red marker, and there IS another marker, but you have to take a 90 degree look to your left and a little back to see it and where it crosses the stream ... VERY VERY EASY TO GET LOST AT THAT POINT ... worthwhile to add a larger sign right there ... and some general more signage needed on the red trail. The orange trail isn't on most maps including the trailhead maps, but that's a good loop trail.

5 months ago

It was okay, got lost a lot!! Never found the big waterfall. The red trail marker randomly ended. Had to hike UP two waterfalls just to make it back on the path!

5 months ago

This is a fantastic trail. It feature 3 waterfalls, one of them is 40 feet tall. You need to be extremely careful on the paths that are high up. People fall every year, so use caution. One of our favorite places to hike!

hiking
5 months ago

Love this place

hiking
6 months ago

Really fun hike! It was pretty muddy and in the future we'll probably avoid this trail after it rains. There are also a lot of steep sections and the steepness combined with the slippery mud was a little scary at times. I agree with others that the trails could be marked better. We got turned around a couple times. I recommend taking a copy of the trail map or downloading it on your phone. It came in handy for us. All things considered, we had fun and the falls are beautiful!

6 months ago

great place. my family enjoyed it. the mini hike. the next time we will go to the waterfalls.

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