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Bluff Trail

Intermediate
 4.0 (8)

Hike along the tops of the unique glacial deposits that have become Chimney Bluffs.


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Map Key

1.1

Miles

1.8

KM

Point to Point

404' 123 m

High

259' 79 m

Low

164' 50 m

Up

177' 54 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

38%

Max Grade (21°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · Views

Family Friendly Kids will love viewing the bizarre geological formations along this trail.

While they're allowed on leash elsewhere, signs make it very clear dogs are not allowed on the beach.

Description

Starting from the public parking lot on East Bay Road (restrooms available) the trail ascends a set of stairs. From the stairs, there is a very steep dirt path that is dotted with trees to help less experienced hikers. It is this section only (and it's very short—just steep) that would be considered "Intermediate" in difficulty, but once you reach the top, you are at the top of the bluffs. There are typically 2 parallel paths for most of the trail—one right along the cliff's edge (with signs warning that the edge may be unstable) and one 20 feet farther back in the woods. These paths will merge and diverge very frequently.

From the initial ascent along the bluffs themselves, the path is very flat. As you come to the end of the bluffs, the path will gradually descend to 8-10 feet above the lake and continue all the way to the park.

Since there are other trails in the park, you can make your own hike by combining them. If you are only hiking the Bluff Trail, it is recommended to drop down to the beach in any one of a number of openings and paths along the shore and make the return hike along the rocky shore. It's a flat hike back, but the shifting gravel, stones, and downed trees on the beach require some dexterity to maneuver. But, looking up at the bluff you were on top of a short while ago makes it worth it!

Flora & Fauna

While most hikers will focus on the bluffs (because they are so unique) there is decent birdwatching over the lake during migrations.

Beware of the thick poison ivy that is about ankle-to-knee high and on both sides of the trail.

Contacts

Shared By:

Andy P

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 8 votes

#10696

Overall
  4.0 from 8 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
25%
2 Star
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1 Star
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Trail Rankings

#323

in New York

#10,696

Overall
2 Views Last Month
197 Since Oct 5, 2016
Intermediate

0%
14%
86%
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Photos

Looking out over the water from the trail.
Oct 4, 2016 near Wolcott, NY
Just before Golden Hour at Chimney Bluffs State Park
Jul 6, 2019 near Wolcott, NY
Closing the day at one of the more remarkable State Parks along the eastern shore of Lake Ontario.
Jul 6, 2019 near Wolcott, NY

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Check-Ins

Sep 5, 2020
Daniel McCloskey
Sep 5, 2020
Duncan Hughes
Jun 24, 2020
Jessie Jiang
1.1mi
Jun 22, 2020
Oleksandr Druziuk
Jun 6, 2020
Marleigh Glasheen
Jun 8, 2019
Frank Harrington
Nov 25, 2017
Johannah Frelier
thanksgiving hike with Nicole
Sep 17, 2017
Andy P
Nice walk from east along the top of the bluffs then back to The parking lot along the shore 1.9mi