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LETCHWORTH STATE PARK
LOCATION - The park is 2 miles north of Portageville. Follow New York 19A to Denton's Corners, then go 2 miles east. It's also accessible from 1-390, Exit 7, to Mount Morris. Follow New York 408 south. Mount Morris offers the park entrance closest to the Highbanks Recreation Area and is the location of the Mount Morris dam.
To get directly to the campground area from Warsaw, go east 6.5 miles on 20A to Perry Center. Turn right onto New York 246, heading south. In Perry, turn left on Covington, right on Gardeau for one mile, and left on Schenk Road.
FEATURES - The park is often referred to as the Grand Canyon of the East and is known for its three beautiful waterfalls in the Genesee River Gorge. Middle Falls, dropping 107 feet, is lit at night from dusk until 11:00 pm. The 7-mile gorge's walls rise 600 feet, and the gorge is visible from a number of lookouts.
ACTIVITIES - The park is open from mid-May through late October. Stay in the motel, one of 82 cabins, Pinewood Lodge, or historic Glen Iris Inn, open from April through early November.
Camp in the 270-site campground, all with electrical hookups, a trailer dump station, and limited groceries. Food is also available in three snack bars and two restaurants.
Enjoy canoeing, tubing, Whitewater rafting from Lee's Landing Area, and trout fishing in the Genesee River. Go swimming in two guarded pools in the Highbanks Area, bicycle riding, or horseback riding with rentals available. Attend philharmonic concerts, lectures, and guided walks.
Hikers have access to 42 miles of terrain along 22 scenic trails. Seven-mile gorge trail passes the three main waterfalls. These falls are easily seen by short hikes from the park road. The Upper Falls are behind the Glen Iris Inn, and if you continue up the trail from the inn, you get a closer look at them.
One of the trails, Gardeau Trail, drops down a steep, heavily eroded trail to reach the river in approximately one mile. Inspiration Point has the park's most spectacular view and an interpretive trail. For an even longer hike, take the 21.5-mile Finger Lakes Trail with several access points making it possible to take shorter hikes along its route.
Besides the three well-known falls, the park has approximately 50 other falls in the park, with 23 described in a park brochure entitled "Letchworth Waterfall Guide."
Half the trails are available for winter hiking. In addition, you can go crosscountry skiing and snowmobiling.
For an unusual view of the gorge, take a balloon ride at sunrise or sunset. For information, call 716-468-5538.
In Portageville, tour Letchworth Pioneer and Indian Museum from May-November.
In Mount Morris, tour the General William August Mills House at 14 Main. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it's open from June 1 through Labor Day, Friday-Sunday from noon-4:00. For information, call 716-658-3292.
Castile Historical House, 17 East Park Road, has Victorian furniture, military collections, and genealogical materials. It's open Tuesdays. For information, call 716-493-5370.
Airplane buffs can tour the National Warplane Museum located l/i mile west of Geneseo on New York 20A. See World War II planes, including a B-17 Flying Fortress. In August, attend the three-day 1941 Wings of Eagles air show. For information, call 716-243-0690.
Incoming pilots can land at Perry Warsaw Airport 3 miles northwest of Perry Rental cars are available.
Letchworth State Park
1 Letchworth State Park
Castile, New York 14427-1124
716-493-2622 (Glen Iris Inn)