Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

From the Rim– There’s a Lot to See

Tuesday July 5, 2016                                                                 Most Recent Posts:
Letchworth State Park                                                                Canyon Surprise and the Gorge Trail
Perry, New York                                                                         First Looks at Letchworth State Park



Yesterday I posted about the beginning of the gorge trail going by the three major falls (link above in blue). We weren’t sure what could be left on the rest of the trail.  On the latter part of the trail we had great gorge views at the overlooks and other spots, walked through forested areas with big trees and had some wildlife surprises but the highlight of the trail for me was Wolf Creek.  


Just one of the many trees I couldn’t begin to get my arms around. 



Wonder who else has looked out on this view over time?  Several of my blog readers have been here I know.







There are some spectacular trees, primarily oaks on this trail.  David is dwarfed beneath this giant and I can only get about half of its height in the picture.



One of our first surprises was this creative little chair along the trail.  I think this is a great idea.  If a tree falls or has to be cut down, cut the stump high enough to make a chair.



I was watching the turkey vultures soar above the canyon and ride the currents when I looked down onto the cliff to my right and saw a solitary buzzard sitting.  Yes it’s a face only a mother could love but we sure could not do without the free services they provide us.


I thought he was looking a little droopy in the first picture but then he opened up his wings a la the anhinga and it was a sight I’ve never seen before. Wildlife sighting number one.  Surprise # 2.






Wildlife sighting #2.  He just sat on this stump, which could have been made into a nice chair for him, and posed for me.  I thought he was so cute.  Then David said, “He’s just a mouse with better clothing.”



I have to admit, he does look like a mouse if you just consider his features.  Not sure I can ever look at a chipmunk in the same way again.  Thanks David.











We can hear the waterfall down there, but we can’t see it.  Don’t think you can see if from anywhere but on the river unless it’s one of those 25 in the book I didn’t buy.



At this point, we’ve turned up Wolf Creek Canyon, we just don’t know it yet.


I hear falls again.  We can see there is a side canyon down there but we can’t find the waterfall.  For whatever reason, the park hasn’t kept the view clear, so this is the best shot I can get of this long long waterfall. It’s a 225 feet cascade that actually has 4 sections.  You can only see two of them through the trees.




We leave the view, such as it is, of the  waterfall headed in the direction of the top and shortly look down on a bridge that appears to cross Wolf Creek.



We take a set of stone steps down to the bridge.  What a lovely picturesque spot.  I’m Standing on the bridge looking up stream at a stone bridge.



Looking downstream at what we guess is the top of many little cascades that must result in  the Wolf Creek  waterfall.



We spend quite a while here enjoying this lovely spot.  I didn’t realize David took this picutre of me sitting on the wall above the little cascades.  The beauty and the music of the water are so soothing.


Before we leave, we set up this selfie at the wooden trail bridge with the rock bridge in the background.


A park crew is repairing the rock wall as we pass around them.



They break for lunch but the traffic increases here at Wolf Creek which is a stop on the park loop road and workmen have unfortunately started up some sort of very loud generator to do work off beyond the stone bridge.  The noise decreases the enjoyment of this beautiful spot.  We walk on looking for a quieter place for lunch.



We choose another of the stone CCC picnic tables in an area which has one of the stone bath houses they built.  I keep forgetting to get a picture of these great buildings.  Bath houses with court yards.  How classy!






This time David picks the table and it’s a much bigger one but still base and top have come from the river.  Only the bench boards are not stone.






We reach a viewpoint where we again see the kayak group coming down the river.  They are mighty small but colorful so we can see them in the distance but the every which way of their boats is more clear when I zoom in.  I think there are closer to 30 boats today.   We later find out that this is the last trip being made until the water levels rise.  The raft trips were stopped a while ago but as of tomorrow, there are no more kayak trips either.   We  unfortunately didn’t pick the best year to come to upstate New York.



Wildlife sighting #3 for the day is this lovely butterfly which I think is a Northern Pearly eye.




We reach the end of the trail at the former site of the town of St. Helena and it’s time to turn around and head back.  Without a shuttle, we just walk to the end and back.  It will be a different hike with the same beautiful stone steps and stone walls.




We found this way of seeing the Gorge from the rim much more fun and inspiring than driving from overview to overview but we’re glad the drive is available to those who cannot walk this trail.



  1. What mountain range is it? Very nice area. Is it cool or hot? How high up are you?

  2. I have that exact same photo of the cascade with you sitting on the wall above. Except in mine an artist was painting that beautiful scene!!! I agree the walk along the edge of the canyon is so worth the effort...just beautiful. I still like chipmunks regardless of what David calls them;o))

  3. The forest is so pretty, but the lack of water is disheartening. I thought we only had that problem in the west. Still the cascades are lovely and David's pic is magical. You look like a small fairy hidden among the stones. Although their faces are frightening, the buzzards' wings are so beautiful. I love to watch them soaring or drying their feathers. I'm looking forward to seeing more CCC structures, they are always so incredible. I would never make it down those wood stairs though, just looking at them knots my stomach!

  4. My eyes aren't doing well for reading today, but the pictures are really awesome. I can imagine myself there.

  5. The canyon really is incredible. It would seem upper New York state is getting the same moderate drought we're getting, hence the rules about kayaks being off the river.

  6. When at first you mentioned a "gorge" I thought of the Columbia River Gorge, OR which is very close to where I live. :) But like the one near my home, this gorge is pretty incredible too! Visiting from Pam's blog, I just signed up to follow yours too.

  7. That is a really amazing shot of the vulture with its wings spread. Hopefully he wasn;t eyeing you up! ;c)

  8. Thank you David, I too can't see the squirrel the same way again :(
    The carved chair is a nice touch.
    Too bad there is less water there, for here in Montana, the creeks and the rivers are just overflowing with snow

  9. What a gorgeous place, I would love to be there

  10. I was attacked by one of those cute chipmunks in Colorado, a nurse witnessed it and checked me out. Lucky it was a love nip and did not break skin. She told me to let family know, just in case I did get sick, they carry some bad virus down there. Lovely pics of natures best, as always.

  11. This trail looks like it would be a nice way to get away from the usual hubbub of the Niagara Falls area. I especially like the last photo, which makes me wonder what I will see if I keep going on the path.

  12. "A mouse in better clothing," haha! The rock work at that park is among the finest I've seen. Nice that they're taking care of it. It's unfortunate that the water levels are so low—I know you would love to be out in your kayaks. But the hiking you're doing is wonderful!

  13. We enjoyed the little falls, also. I enjoyed rehiking with you:)

  14. I enjoyed David's little observation about the chipmunk, and lucky for me I will most likely forget all about it by the time I see one again and be able to enjoy it even if it is just another rodent. Lots of rodents are cute after all, especially muskrats and prairie dogs!

  15. Those giants are superb. Looks like a very well used roosting rock with its white wash. The CCC work is always outstanding. Yet another wonderful hike.

  16. Beautiful hike and pictures! I would say beautiful wildlife sightings, but the vulture's face - I'm sorry, but it is true that is a face only a mother could love. However, he looks almost stately with his winds spread. The chipmunk is cute - in fact, mice are cute in their own way - it's rats that I just can't find cute in any way. The water really is low - nonetheless, pretty waterfall, pretty place.

  17. Waterfalls, rocks and big trees - great day of hiking. I must agree the chipmunk is very cute and deserves more than the moniker of uptown mouse. The lowly field mouse is actually pretty cute too. Rats are hard to see as anything but rats though.


Your comments are the best part of this blog for me.
I LOVE hearing from you!