Adventures on the Trails in Oswego County
With more than 33,000 acres of public land encompassing rolling hills, woodlands and the expansive shoreline of Great Lake Ontario, Oswego County, NY offers year-round opportunities for hiking and exploring.
Salmon River Falls:
The legendary Salmon River is known worldwide for its tremendous fishery. Its 110-foot waterfall is a scenic treasure. A wheelchair-accessible trail leads along the rim of a long, steep gorge, while a more challenging trail takes hikers to the bottom. Visitors often look up to see bald eagles circling over the steep cliffs around them.
Adventurous ice climbers have developed numerous routes on winter ice formations. The area is known for outstanding recreation with excellent fishing and paddling in two nearby reservoirs. The NYS DEC’s Salmon River Fish Hatchery is located nearby.
Hikers, skiers, snowmobilers, fat bikers, atv riders, mushers and snowshoers enjoy this 70-mile trail network on the edge of the Tug Hill Plateau.
Comprising more than 9,000 acres, the former farmland was reforested during the 30s and 40s. The area enjoys extensive winter use, thanks to Lake Ontario’s epic “Lake Effect” snows. Volunteers organize a variety of events along the trail network, from SnoFatShu snowshoe and fat bike duathlons, to the Deer Fly Run in August.
Deer Creek Dune Walk:
Nestled along a 17-mile stretch of natural sand dunes on the eastern Lake Ontario shoreline, Deer Creek Marsh WMA is a diverse collection of dunes, wetlands, and beach bordering the open waters of Lake Ontario.
The area offers quiet paddling on Deer Creek, and an observation platform with views of Lake Ontario and the expansive marsh. A dune walkover provides access to both Deer Creek and Lake Ontario.
This is a great spot for viewing the sunset. In late summer, lucky visitors may glimpse migrating Monarch butterflies as they float the air currents over the open lake, and land on shoreline shrubbery to recover from their journey.
Oswego Canal walking trails:
Portions of this unique trail were built on a former railroad line through historic Oswego. A pedestrian bridge 175 feet above the Oswego River provides a panoramic view of sites where battles were fought during the 18th and 19th centuries. Restaurants, shops and museums are all within walking distance. Stop and watch the river’s fishing action, or bring your own pole and tackle.
Great Bear Recreation Area:
This pristine area along the east bank of the Oswego River features a network of trails and an old canal lock. According to legend, a young Native American brave – some say the father of Hiawatha – was attacked here by a large bear. Great Bear is popular year-round and offers spectacular cross-country skiing along with hiking and cycling trails.
Interactive Trail map and visitor info: http://visitoswegocounty.com/the-great-outdoors/hiking-biking-trails/ or call 1-800-248-4FUN (4386).