Discover Greenwood Creek State Forest

A loop trail to a waterfall and an out-and-back trail on a peninsula both start from a state picnic area,
2.00 miles, Network
Dirt/Forest Floor, Gravel/Crushed Stone


This is scenic trail starting in a creek side park, that includes many picnic tables and fire pits. Several outhouses are also available. The trail highlights various aspects of the forest, the waterfalls and the creek. You will change from boulder strewn sections, to great stands of red pine planted in the 1930’s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), and open hardwoods. The trail is suitable for year-round use as long as the road is accessible.

The Falls trail-

The trail starts at the picnic area on the edge of Greenwood Creek. Find the trail marked with yellow discs at the base of the falls, you will be heading upstream (SE) from here. The trail is sometimes 50’-100’ from the falls, but there are many herd paths right to the water’s edge. Enjoy the views of the falls and the large rock ledges across the creek, but be careful as the rocks can be slippery. These falls are particularly impressive during times of high water.

 At the top of the falls the trail bears left (SSW) and enters into a red pine forest. This continues and you will enter a hardwood lowland at around .45 miles. The trail heads uphill and back into another stand of red pines. The trail passes through a clearing with an old gravel pit on your right. There is an outhouse here as well. At .7 miles you will cross the Greenwood road and head South downhill into a great stand of hard maples. There is a small stream crossing here, you can hop across the stream or there is a single log that you can cross on. There is an old trail the used to continue ahead, but the trail now turns right (West) and follows the top of the ridge line until you come to cross a second dirt road, about .85 miles from the start.

 The trail leads into another stand of red pine, and follows the ridge line along the contours of the land. At one mile you will start a dogleg downhill into open hardwoods, eventually heading North. At 1.2 miles the trail leads to an old log landing.

*NOTE*The D.E.C. trail map shows the trail going left (West) from here. That trail is poorly marked and basically unmaintained, eventually leading into a beaver swamp. That route is best avoided until improvements are made.

From the log landing, turn right (NW) for 200 yards, and then follow the road back one-half mile back to the picnic area.

Short trail-

There is also a short but scenic trail that leads downstream from the picnic area. This trail is only .4 miles roundtrip and follows Greenwood creek downstream along a peninsula of large white pines. The creek and wetlands flow on both sides and are a good places to see birds & wildlife.

Other Information

This trail is part of the Great 8 Challenge. Learn more!




Trail Manager

For more information, contact:

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Potsdam Sub-Office

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Potsdam Sub-Office
190 Outer Main Street - Suite 103
Potsdam, NY 13676
Phone: 315-265-3090
View website

Nearby Businesses

Trail Tips

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Trailhead Information

From the northeast - From the junction of NY-3 and NY-58, travel southwest on NY-3 approximately 4 miles towards Harrisville. Greenwood Road will be marked with a D.E.C. sign on your left. Follow this road 1 mile to the picnic area on your left. 

 From the southwest - From the intersection of NY-812 and NY-3, travel northeast on NY-3 approximately 7 miles. Greenwood Road will be marked with a D.E.C. sign on your right. Follow this road 1 mile to the picnic area on your left. 

NOTE: Greenwood Road is not maintained in winter.

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June 12, 2024
On June 10, 2024 we went on this hike, following the description given on this site. Yellow markers were easy to find until we arrived at a dirt road and didn't know if that was supposed to be a "log landing." We found more markers across the road and followed them right into the impossible portion of unmaintained trail the description on this site warns against. It would have been better to warn against going on this portion of "trail" by saying DO NOT FOLLOW the markers across the road. And since there were no logs to be seen, there is no way to know you've arrived at a "log landing." So, yes, we slogged through a lot of downed trees, swampy areas, thankfully finding enough markers not to get lost. Miracle we ended up back at the picnic area!
August 10, 2023
The falls are beautiful and can be seen easily from the picnic area. Go see them, then get in your car and leave. DO NOT hike this "trail." The maintenance is almost as nonexistent as the trail itself in many places. The only way I managed to complete it was to use GPS (Alltrails app) and bushwhack in the general direction of where the trail was supposed to be. In the 10+ years I have been hiking in the Adirondacks, I have never come across a more poorly maintained area. Even the more clear sections of the trail can be difficult to discern. This trail is flat out dangerous if you are not an experienced hiker carrying GPS. I highly recommend this trail be removed from this challenge until and unless it is properly maintained.
September 26, 2022
Agree this is not a family friendly hike with small children. Started with 7 and 5 year-old, and chose to turn back rather quickly. We do highly enjoy the falls at the start. Would like to complete this for the great 8 challenge, but will wait until improvements are made.
August 16, 2022
We hiked the Greenwood Creek State Forest on August 8, 2022. The best part of the trail was along the waterfalls, there were some great views along the way. We heard that there were four marked trails in the State Forest. We did not find the four trails because all the markers were yellow color. The people who attached the markers nailed some of them too hard so the trees were starting to push the markers off some of the trees. The people doing the marking should be trained on how to do it correctly. If there are four trails, each trail should have its own color.
June 14, 2022
I agree with everything SUECHI wrote about the trail. I was her hiking partner yesterday and we were surprised that this trail was described as easy in the info given about it. Something really needs to be done about the red pine stand which has obviously been effected by blow down during strong winds. We couldn't find any trail markers once we reached that area of the trail and assumed they were on the underside of the trees that were down. Otherwise, the trail was well marked for the most part, but I would not recommend this trail for families with young children. The picnic/falls area is a beautiful spot and the outhouse is a plus also.
June 13, 2022
We are experienced hikers that went to Greenwood Creek State Forest today to check this off our Great Eight challenge list. We went on what we thought would be a 2 mile loop. The overall trail was practically a herd trail. You often could not tell where the actual trail was except most of the trail was very well marked...until we got close to the end of the loop, 1.75, near the red pine stand where there were so many downed trees and NO trail markers to be found. We looked in all directions but could not find the trail, so we ended backtracking, which made our hike almost 4.5 miles (we missed a trail marker and got off trail and had tondo more backtracking.) It was very frustrating. As I checked out, I saw the two parties that signed in before us both stated that the trail must be maintained. If the county is going to continue to promote this trail in the Great Eight challenge, an accurate description must be given. This trail would be difficult for small children, and unless they re-mark the end of the trail, there will be more frustrated hikers.
As a suggestion, many of the downed trees can be used to mark off the trails.

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