It's a beautiful afternoon, and perfect weather for a visit to nearby Watkins Glen State Park, only minutes from the Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel. They say if you only hike one trail, it should be the Gorge Trail at the state park. Let's do it!
But there's a small hitch: Pam discovers she left her hiking shoes at home, and since the trail can be slippery and is rated "moderate," she opts to pass. So I'm on my own.
You can begin the 1.5-mile hike at either the bottom of the park, or the top. I chose the top, or the South Entrance, and after paying the $10 entrance fee, head for the starting point.
Like the Finger Lakes, glacial forces and water carved our this unique terrain over the last million years, and today the water flowing from Glen Creek powers 19 waterfalls that continue to eat away the rocks that form the gorge, creating spectacular photo opportunities.
While rated a moderate hike, walking it is made much easier thanks to the efforts of the Civilian Conservation Corps, who in the 1930s, built hundreds of steps and stairs into the rocks along the way. With water bottle and map in hand, I was off.
There’s nothing quite like being one with Nature, and the hike through the gorge in the bright afternoon sun didn’t disappoint. There was something to "ooh and aah" about around every corner, and some of the waterfalls are truly spectacular.
One of the highlights of the trail is the Cavern Cascade, where you literally walk behind the falling water. Another highlight is Rainbow Falls, so named because light on it releases a symphony of colors. Toward the end you’ll find Frowning Cliff, where lack of light means few plants can grow. Part of the trail was blocked off due to "hazardous conditions," but there still was plenty to admire.
Join the hike, via photos and video. I hated Pam had to miss it!
Video/Photos by North Palm Beach Life