The Beauty Around Us

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Five NY State Parks in One Weekend: Buttermilk Falls, Taughannock Falls and Robert H. Treman State Parks

On the second day of our Finger Lakes Region weekend getaway (June 27th), we went in search of NY State Park waterfalls. We made good use of our Empire Passport, as we entered three NY State Parks, all located near Ithaca, NY.

The first park we entered was Buttermilk Falls State Park, where we saw the waterfall for which the park is named.

_LG15999 4x6Buttermilk Falls

The waterfall was conveniently located near the park entrance. There is a trail alongside the right side of the waterfall; however, it was closed.  There is a swimming beach at the base of the waterfall.  The beach was closed during our visit.  This was our first time to see this waterfall.  I hope that we have the opportunity to see it again.

The second park we entered was Taughannock Falls State Park. We entered the park on the Cayuga Lake side, where we enjoyed an expansive view of the lake and boats docked at the marina.

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From this park entrance, we drove a short distance to Falls Overlook, where we enjoyed a lofty view of Taughannock Falls.

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Taughannock Falls plunges 215 feet past rocky cliffs that tower nearly 400 feet above the gorge.

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From Falls Overlook we returned to Cayuga Lake and entered Taughannock Falls at the entrance on the other side of the road.  We walked the short distance to the lower Taughannock Falls.

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Lower Taughannock Falls

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We chose not to walk the ¾ mile trail to the 215-foot Taughannock Falls that we viewed from Falls Overlook, as a steady rain had developed by now. We visited Taughannock Falls one time before in July 2002, with our niece Emily.  During that visit, we did walk to the base of the larger waterfall.  I hope that we have the opportunity to walk the trail sometime this year.

The third park we entered was Robert H. Treman State Park.

_LG16025 4x6It was a short walk along a tree-lined path to Treman Falls.

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There was a swimming beach at the base of Treman Falls.
This beach was open.
We saw a sign that said the water temperature was 60 degrees.

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This was the most unique swimming beach we had ever seen.  The swimming beach was located at the base of a beautiful waterfall AND there was a diving board at the deep end!

We had a steady rain all day, lighter in the early morning hours and heavier later in the morning and afternoon hours. We didn’t allow the rain to interfere with our plans. What a great day we had!

7 Responses to “Five NY State Parks in One Weekend: Buttermilk Falls, Taughannock Falls and Robert H. Treman State Parks”

    • Intrepid Hiker

      Just returned from an awesome tour of these places, using this site as a guide. Don’t miss Watkins Glen if you are in the area, and I would recommend NOT going when school is out of session. The crowds and noise were enormous and I found myself having ‘Gorge Rage’ over the selfie sticks and big groups of people who needed to document their existence by blocking the trails and pathways. So go enjoy the gorge tour. You won’t be disappointed. You will be awed….but try September when things quiet down is my advice. And thanks Linda for the info and wonderful photos which inspired me to plan this trip and make sure I visited all the parks.

      Reply
      • Linda G.

        Thank you, Intrepid Hiker. I am happy that you found my blog posts helpful in planning your trip. My husband and I traveled through Watkins Glen a couple days ago, on our way back from vacationing in New Hampshire. We planned to hike the gorge again, but it was too hot and humid plus there was very little water. We may go in September….great time of year to be there.

      • Intrepid Hiker

        We took very few photos of our treks to these Falls. It seemed as if it was impossible to catch it with an ipod. So thank you for the outstanding photos you placed on this site. I was sincere when I said we used it as a guide. And sincere when we say we just look at your photos and enjoy. Great photo job Linda. Convinced me to take this journey. Thanks.

  1. Betsy Adams

    Hi, I am glad that George saw your posts –since this is an area we REALLY need to visit sometime… I even got the Atlas out and marked some of these state parks/areas… Is it worth getting the Empire Pass —although we probably won’t get to visit ‘many’ more of their State Parks??? Is there a cost to visit EACH park???? Thanks.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

    Reply
    • Linda G.

      The Empire Passport costs $65 each year. Each park has an entrance fee of $7 or $8 (Niagara Falls State Park charges $10). Some parks do not begin to charge until Memorial Day weekend. Each park’s website provides information about its entrance fee: how much and when collected. Our Empire Passport has paid for itself this year.

      Reply

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