Go with the flow
Adirondack beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, and our waterfalls are no exception. As the winter snowpack melts, the ice sculptures unlock to reveal crashing torrents at the height of their beauty. Sure, waterfalls are stunning year-round, but you haven't seen anything until you've seen them at their springtime peak.
In the Adirondacks, you'll find a water-lover's buffet of sites to behold, ranging from easily accessible to a difficult hike, gently tumbling falls to steep plunges. The intimidating sounding Death Falls in Raquette Lake is actually nothing to be afraid of! The walk to the falls only takes about five minutes and the falls themselves are 70 feet high, tumbling down a stair-like series of rock ledges. In Wells, a visit to the West Branch of the Sacandaga River and Cold Brook Falls is achieved by a 2.5 mile hike over rugged terrain. The reward is two separate falls in a gorge that is incredibly beautiful and well worth the effort. And there are many, many other falls to visit along the way!
Take the Waterfall Challenge
Start by downloading the Waterfall Challenge guide, which will tell you all about some of the best falls in the area. You'll find easy-to-reach roadside cascades and out-of-the-way backcountry tumblers, each assigned with a points rating. If you visit enough to earn 12 points, register your visits online to receive a commemorative Hamilton County waterfall patch as a token of your accomplishment.
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Leave No Trace
The magic of the Adirondacks is the result of previous generations taking a long view and protecting the mountains, lakes, and rivers within the Blue Line. That tradition continues today as we support and encourage everyone to practice Leave No Trace ethics, which help protect the lands and waters of the Adirondacks. Remember, not every "challenge" today has a patch or prize. The best way to cement your legacy is to pledge to always protect the wild lands and waters of the Adirondacks by practicing Leave No Trace ethics and good stewardship
Donate to the Hamilton County Trail Improvement Fund! This partnership with the DEC is an opportunity to improve trail conditions, and some of our favorite waterfall hikes might just be in line!