Hike the Gorge Trail at Buttermilk Falls

    1.7 miles 500 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

    Added by Jake Sells

    For trail of never-ending, cascading waterfalls, take a hike for a gorge-ous scene of what the Finger Lakes Region is best known for.

    The Gorge Trail starts to the right at the base of the last cascading waterfall you see as you enter the park. From here you begin hiking into the heart of the gorge following Buttermilk Creek to a bridge where you can turn around or continue exploring.

    The trail features several large cascading falls around every corner. The trail is mostly a stone path which has several strenuous stair climbs. This shouldn't be a problem for families with rests in between at key lookout points overlooking the falls.

    The Gorge Trail is an out and back trail totaling 1.7 miles, The Rim Trail however, is an alternative trail on the way back which follows from atop the gorge instead of through it back the way you came.

    Read More
    Dog Friendly
    Easy Parking
    Family Friendly
    Food Nearby
    Picnic Area
    Swimming Hole

    Go Pro.

    We're committed to building a better, more inclusive home for the modern outdoors. Go PRO to support our mission and get benefits like gear deals, no ads, and more!

    Learn More


    Rate this Adventure

    🥇Top Contributor

    8 days ago

    Another amazing state park in the Finger Lakes

    The gorge trail is amazing and far less crowded than the famous Watkins Glen State Park. What Buttermilk Falls has that Watkins Glen doesn't is an awesome swimming area at the base of a waterfall. There seriously are waterfalls around every corner! It's especially beautiful in the fall, but of course, it's too cold to go swimming then!

    Great little hike

    The waterfalls were so pretty!! The climb up the stairs gave a good little heart pump, but nothing too extreme. It was a nice short hike - my friend and I took the Rim Trail back to make it a loop instead of out and back. If I lived in NY I would definitely be visiting this one often!

    Great Summer Oasis

    I loved this state park! Upon first entering the park, you're greeted with the Buttermilk Waterfall, which is stunning! Easy hiking, a steady incline of stairs from the bottom of the park. On the way up you'll see lots of swimming holes and small waterfalls. Dogs are welcomed. Really a great time!

    🥈 Contributor

    over 4 years ago

    Beautiful Falls

    Love the gorge trail, very scenic and the cascading falls are beautiful! Great hike for the whole family!

    Leave No Trace

    Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

    We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

    Stay Nearby

    Ithaca, New York

    Gorges Hideaway At Little Leaf Farm

    From $158/night

    Ithaca, New York

    Meadow Retreat At Little Leaf Farm

    From $148/night

    Ithaca, New York

    Home Sweet Campsite Two

    From $170/night

    Ithaca, New York

    Home Sweet Campsite

    From $170/night

    Nearby Adventures

    Hike the Thayer Preserve Loop at Lick Brook

    0.8 mi / 100 ft gain

    Hike Sweedler Preserve at Lick Brook

    1.6 mi / 500 ft gain

    Hike Coy Glen

    2 mi / 689 ft gain

    Hike the Cascadilla Gorge Trail

    1.1 mi / 300 ft gain
    More Nearby Adventures