Letchworth Trail Adventure–an open invitation

20 Jun

I keep alternating between being sad, angry, and frustrated that we aren’t going to be able to take our cross-country road trip this summer.  I know that we will do it (possibly next summer) eventually, and that we will have a great time.  The thing that helps me to get over the negative emotions is that the trip was really just going to be about camping and exploring nature–we weren’t planning to stay in hotels or go to certain “tourist places” so much as just drive, camp, hike, drive, camp, hike our way across the country.  And the camping and hiking and trail running can all still happen, just in a different place.  Am I sad I won’t get to see the Pacific Ocean or climb a mountain or see how my body handles being at altitude?  Sure.  But I am optimistic that this summer will be filled with new adventures, closer to home?  You betcha!


A few years ago, Eric and I decided we were going to hike every trail in Letchworth.   We started out strong, but then the wheels kind of fell off.  We are super busy hitting all the trails in Monroe County (not to mention the ADK hiking we like to do) in the summer.  So we don’t get down to Letchworth nearly as much as we’d like, which is unfortunate because it really is a beautiful park and one of the first places I learned to love being outdoors (my parents would take us there all the time when we were little kids).


So when our plans for a cross-country road trip extravaganza fell through, we started talking about a trail running/hiking/camping trip closer to home.  We kicked around a few different locations, but settled on Letchworth State Park, mostly because of its proximity to Rochester.


We would LOVE it if our friends could join us for any or all of the trip.  Our plan is to take about 9 days and hike/run EVERY trail in Letchworth State Park.  This adds up to over 100 miles over the course of the trip.  At first, I thought that seemed daunting, but then I reminded myself that we know people who run 100 miles in 1 day!  So without further ado, here’s the trip itinerary:

July 28th (4ish miles): Get to Letchworth.  Set up camp.  Trails 10 and 10a are by the parade ground entrance. We could set up camp, then go out and do those, OR we could hike, then set up camp…it’s maybe about 4 miles.
July 29th (20ish miles): In the AM, drive to and then run trail 1, which is 14 miles out-and-back. Have lunch at the falls, hang out there, then hike 2, 2a and 3 (they all connect it’s the mary jemison trail that we did before) which is like 6 miles 1 way, then come back on the roads, which will be a decent chunk of hiking on the roads to get back to the car (or backtrack, but that will definitely add miles).
July 30th (15ish miles): drive to trails 4 and 5 (4 miles round trip); drive to trails 11, 14, 13  ( 5.5 miles round trip); go back to campsite, have lunch/chill, then hike over to and do 17 to 15 to road back to 17, which is about 5 miles (from the campground it may end up being closer to 6).
July 31st: (23ish miles): On the other side of the river by the parade grounds we will do trail 7 in the AM (it’s 11.5 miles round trip), plus 6 and 6a, which adds about 2 miles. We could do this in the AM, then in the PM, do 8 to 8a to 9, back on 8 to the car, which I think would be 9ish miles.
August 1st (9ish miles): Hike to and take trails 18 to 19 to 19a to 20, then all the way back to our campground (we’d leave from the campground). This would be about 9ish miles.
August 2nd: Anything we didn’t do/missed/hang out and recup day.  Maybe go hang out at Wolf Creek for a bit for old time’s sake (where we did a lot of fabulous trash-the-dress pictures).
August 3rd: Run the Dam Good preview run (14 miles), hang out in the parking lot with people and enjoy life.  Then leave from the Dam Parking lot and hike the Finger Lakes Trail (FLT), which is about 24 miles long.  We’ll do this over the course of a few days.  This day, we’ll go to the first lean-to, which is about 5 or 6 miles in.  Set up camp, relax for the evening.
August 4th:  Hike another 8 miles to lean-to number 2.  Set up camp.  Check out some of the side trails (as needed/desired) as we hike along.
August 5th:  Leave our gear there, hike 9.6 miles to the end of the FLT, then turn around and hike 9.6 back to lean-to #2.  Enjoy another night.
August 6th:  Get up, hike 12/13 miles back to the Dam parking lot and our cars.  Go home.
If we had multiple people, we could leave cars on different ends of trails and not have as much mileage (particularly for the FLT).  We can put one other tent on our campsite, which means it would be $10/night, otherwise you’ll have to book your own site ($20/night).  The sites are pretty full already, FYI.
If you are interested in joining for any/all of this adventure, shoot myself or Eric a message with dates you want to join.  First come, first served for camping on our site.  We’d love to have you join us!!!






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