We have never really been the "hiking" family. However; after COVID I think it forced us to think out of the box and get the kids out in the fresh air. Also; a lot of friends had started to post fun hiking adventure pictures online and it got us motivated to start ourselves. We found some great places to hike in Western, New York close to our hometown of Middleport, NY that made it easy for us to get out and Explore with our three kids (3, 5, & 7). We really enjoying getting out in the outdoors now and exploring new areas with the kids.
A great Resource for Hiking Trails near you is AllTrails.com. I highly suggest visiting this site; they also offer an App you can download to your mobile device.
When we hike more locations I will be updating the list below. But I wanted to Highlight the ones that we actually did as a family together.
This was one of our favorite hikes we took. It was my daughter's 3rd Birthday and this year she wanted a Cinderella themed party. Unknown to us when we arrived at Akron Falls there was Cinderella's Coach off to the right in a grassy area near a restroom pavilion. So of course we had to go at take a photo. That made her day!
The hike itself was great; we brought our masks with us (but didn't end up needing them). There are a few tighter areas on the walk (up & down the hill) that might require them if families are in those tight areas at the same time. Otherwise once you get down below it's pretty open.
They had a lot of great trees and areas for the kids to climb; but be safe.
Also; there are a few playgrounds at Akron Park. So just a fair warning that the kids will see them and want to go on them :)
Lower & Upper Akron Falls is a 0.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Akron, New York that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels.
If your looking for a quick bite or coffee from a local shop to eat check out Clarence Center Coffee Company & Cafe. It is about 15 minutes from Akron Falls but it is a great little cafe.
If coming in on Clarence Center Road from Akron Falls; the Driveway is on the Left hand side and is right before the yellow building & outdoor seating area. We missed it and had to turn around.
Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge & Tonawanda Wildlife Management Area Loop
There are a few hiking Trails that are apart of the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge. They are:
- Kanyoo Nature Trail
- Swallow Hollow Trail
- Onondaga Trail
- HQ Trail
- Feeder Road
We have done 2 of the trails so far that are apart of the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge. I have listed them below...
Kanyoo Nature Trail
1.1 mile loop trail located near Basom, New York; good for all skill levels.
Please Note: When typing in Kanyoo Nature Trail into Google for directions it will pull up the location for the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge. That is not the location for this trail. It is located off Route 77 (right near Feeder Ditch Rd.). You will see the Big Red Barn and the sign by the side of the road.
The Upper Left Hand Corner of the map below shows the exact location of the Kanyoo Trail in comparison to the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge.
Swallow Hollow Trail
This is one of our favorite trails. It is a giant loop (1.2 miles). This is a very easy one for the kids to stay on the trail with some good areas as well for some log walking.
1.2 mile loop - Good for all ages and skill levels.
Lockport Nature Trail
This trail was great for the kids. The trails were kept up really well and the kids really enjoyed it; they especially loved the little creek area where we could walk on the rocks.
Lockport Nature Trail is a 1.6 mile trail located near Lockport, New York. The trail is good for all skill levels and primarily used for walking and nature trips. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
lytle nature preserve
The kids and I went on this walk with friends who are also doing full time virtual school. We like to get the kids together for some fitness activity, and it's also nice to get out of the house.
This was a great hiking spot for the kids and it was open enough that if there were others on the trail; we could get off to the side and let them pass.
Parking for the Lytle Nature Preserve is across the street right next to the Erie Canal. There is a crosswalk on the road to get over to the Lytle Nature Preserve.
6637 North Canal Road Lockport NY 14094
royalton ravine county park
There are a couple of different trails at the Ravine. We chose to do the Red Trail. We got to walk across a little suspended bridge and made it to the "waterfall". Plus we got to see the Belva Lockwood Homestead that lies within the park.
Map of the trails at the Royalton Ravine.
Since being at home more we are having to come up with more activities for the kids. We love to get them outside in Nature. Hiking has been a great activity for the kids and they really grown to like it a lot.
We have explored other areas in NY this year; including Hamlin Beach State Park and also Letchworth State Park. We camped at both of these locations and did a lot of biking and Hiking at each. These are fantastic areas for families with kids who might be looking for a more full day activity with the kids.
We are looking forward to continue hiking into the winter months as well. The fall has been great with all the crunchy leaves; and I really think they will enjoy getting out in the winter as well. I might have to invest in some snow shoes.