Earlier this autumn I made a quick trip to Letchworth State Park and I spent a few hours taking photographs. Since the autumn colours were on the verge of disappearing for another season I was very happy to squeeze in this visit.
(NOTE: click on images to enlarge them)
Letchworth State Park is situated about 60 miles (approx. 97 km) southeast of Buffalo New York. It is an expansive park covering 14,350 acres (58 square km), measuring almost 17 miles (27.4 km) in length. The Genesee River flows through the park and there are three major waterfalls which draw numerous photographers to the area. The park has been called “The Grand Canyon of the East’ because of the deep gorge that has been cut by the river. In places it rises over 500 feet (152.4 m) above the river. There are good hiking trails to explore and visitors should stay on these designated trails as venturing off them can be extremely hazardous. Early this month a teenager fell to his death after dropping over 200 feet (61 m) when he lost his footing in an ‘off limits’ area next to the river gorge. It was the second fatality at the park this year.
There is a modern, paved road for the entire length of the park which follows the west side of the river gorge. It has a number of well-marked, scenic lookouts. Letchworth State Park is one of the top campgrounds in the United States and has well equipped facilities for travelers. There are some restaurants within the park’s grounds with the Glen Iris Inn providing the best quality meals, and at reasonable prices.
The park is named after the industrialist William Pryor Letchworth who bought much of the original land now occupied by the park. He bequeathed the estate to the state of New York in 1906, which later further developed the land into its present form.
The three major waterfalls in the park are called Upper, Middle and Lower Falls and all are situated in the southern section of the park. They are all readily accessible on foot but visitors should be aware that the lower falls can only be reached by using a series of stone stairways totally 127 stairs.
Here are some perspectives of the Lower Falls…
A storm front was moving in and it was very windy during our visit. This made taking images of the Middle Falls difficult since it was a challenge to frame photographs without the plants in the foreground moving to a distracting level. Never-the-less here are a couple of images of the Middle Falls.
And, finally here are a couple of perspectives of the Upper Falls.
The park is open all year round with winter visitors enjoying snowmobiling, snow tubing and cross country skiing. There is a Conference Centre located in the southwest section of the park and it is used for organizational retreats, as well as for educational and training programs.
If you are looking for an interesting place to visit and capture some images of waterfalls I would certainly recommend Letchworth State Park.
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