Vacation Recap, Lake Erie, Part 4

We took a week to circle Lake Erie. We never visited Lake Erie itself, just a few interesting points.

Day 4

After breakfast at the hotel, we left Rochester and headed for Letchworth State Park, voted the #1 state park in America. It was scenic.

Here is the view just after the entrance, at what I think was the first overlook spot.

photo of a scenic overlook at Letchworth State Park in New York

Then we found another scenic spot and hiked the trails for a little bit.

photo of hiking trail at Letchworth State Park in New York

The only problem with the trails is that they went up and down as much as they went horizontally. No wait, the problem was that the trail went down from the parking spot, so the kids had fun hiking out. But then the hike back to the car was all uphill, and that was not so fun. If you take the kids hiking, be sure to park at the bottom of a trail so the hike back is downhill.

Then some more driving. It’s a long park, with a lot of driving between attractions. Here’s another scenic overlook:

photo of a scenic overlook at Letchworth State Park in New York

Then we came to the meat of the park – the Glen Iris Inn, the museum, and two of the three waterfalls. We parked there and did some walking down the paved pathway to the waterfalls:

photo of the path to the waterfalls at Letchworth State Park in New York

photo of a waterfall at Letchworth State Park in New York

photo of a waterfall at Letchworth State Park in New York

By then it was mid afternoon, and the kids were tired of hiking, so we set out to check into our hotel.

A word of warning: if you decide to visit Letchworth, plan ahead for your accomodations and your food. That part of the state is very rural, and there is not much around there as far as commercial establishments go.

Our hotel was the Colonial Inn, just outside the south end of the park. Not a big place, and not a fancy place, but it worked. It was clean, the people were friendly, and the rooms had fridges so we could keep food (since breakfast options were few and far between).

Until this place, we had been staying in chain hotels that had rooms big enough for our family of 6. That meant two queen beds and a pull-out sofabed. Colonial Inn did not offer such a room, but they did have two adjoining rooms with a door between. So we had enough beds, and it was a bonus because then we had two bathrooms for our family instead of the usual one.

After unpacking and relaxing for a bit (and I changed clothes since it was a warm day and I had been hiking a lot) we went for dinner. We chose the Charcoal Corral. There were some other options, but it looked like the most fun. We started with a round of mini-golf, then we placed our food order. While we waited for our food, the boys played in the arcade. We then ate our food (nothing fancy, but again, it worked) and finished up with ice cream. The Corral is, depending how you look at it, either 4 connected building or one big building with 4 sections: the restaurant, the pizza place, the ice cream parlor, and the arcade. Each one has its own entrance doors and its own cashiers, but you can walk among them through the interior hallway. It was a good diversion for the late afternoon.

photo of the Charcoal Corral in Perry, New York

By the time we finished the ice cream, it was still a little early to turn in for the night. Maybe 6:00pm? So we stopped by the inn to drop off our food and change into good walking shoes, and we headed back to Letchworth.

We stopped at a trail by a river. We had driven by this spot on our way out earlier and had almost stopped then. Wolf something, I think. The kids walked along the river and we found a bridge that was a good spot for taking photos.

Here’s looking one way from the bridge:

photo of a river at Letchworth State Park in New York

And here’s a photo from the same spot but with the setting on the camera that makes things look miniature:

photo of a river at Letchworth State Park in New York

And here’s a photo from the same spot but the other direction:

photo of a river at Letchworth State Park in New York

Where the water stops is the top of a waterfall. It was about a 100-foot drop down the waterfall, but not straight down. It was probably a 70-degree angle, littered with boulders. It would be very uncomfortable if one fell down that waterfall.

Did you notice the stone wall on the left of that previous photo? Here’s a photo from the other side:

photo of a stone wall at Letchworth State Park in New York

There were miles and miles of that stone wall throughout the whole park. That must have taken a lot of work. I think the CCC can take credit for that, as I can’t imagine the manpower involved in that being provided any other way.

Then the boys found stairs for another trail.

photo of a stone wall at Letchworth State Park in New York

And that trail led to a scenic overlook.

photo of a stone wall at a scenic overlook at Letchworth State Park in New York

The stone wall there was about knee high to me. And I had the kids with me. The wall was low enough that if a 6-year-old tripped, he could tumble over the wall. If you look at the photo, you can see the 100-foot drop on the far side of the river. That’s pretty much what was on the other side of the stone wall here, so don’t lose your balance. My heart rate was above average, I’m sure, while we were up there. Not due to the hike, but because the 6-year-old and the 4-year-old were more energetic and less careful around that wall than I would have liked.

If you are a parent who worries about the physical safety of your child, this state park is not for you. At least there was a wall here. Other parts of the trail had no wall and a similar drop. We left this area and drove to one more stop.

On our earlier visit, we saw 2 of the 3 waterfalls. So this time, we visited the 3rd waterfall. It was not as accessible as the others, so we parked and then had to choose our own adventure:

photo of a sign for the lower falls trail at Letchworth State Park in New York

The boys chose the steps. Alpha counted as he stepped, to double-check the sign’s claims. It was another waterfall.

photo of a the lower falls at Letchworth State Park in New York

Still scenic, but not as interesting as the others. Law of diminishing returns and all – the third waterfall of the day is not as thrilling as the first waterfall of the day.

Then it was back to the hotel for a snack and bedtime.

To Be Continued …

He brought forth streams also from the rock And caused waters to run down like rivers.

Psalm 78:16

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This little article thingy was written by Some Guy sometime around 6:19 am and has been carefully placed in the Travel category.

One Response to “Vacation Recap, Lake Erie, Part 4”

  1. Eleanor strong Says:

    What a beautiful park!!

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