Lower Oneonta Falls (photographer: Jeremiah Leipold)
Trail Description Driving Directions
Trail Alert, May 8, 2017: Please stay clear of Oneonta Gorge, which is closed for public safety due to flash flood conditions that destabilized the upper canyon and carried rocks, fallen trees, and debris with it. The area is closed to the public until we are able to re-assess the stability of the upper part of the slot canyon and ensure the risk of flash floods has subsided.
Oneonta Gorge is one of the many wonders of the National Scenic Area. However, it isn't accessible by trail --the creek is the trail.
To reach Lower Oneonta Falls, walk up the creek bed, over a large and perhaps unstable log jam. Be very careful scrambling over this, especially with little ones! Continue walking through the incredible slot canyon through water up to your waist until you reach the waterfall.
The trek to Lower Oneonta Falls has some very uneven footing but it's worth the challenge. It is fantastic on an August weekday to cool off with the cool refreshing water. Avoid on weekends since it is so busy.
- The creek bed is very rocky; water shoes are recommended.
- This trail is very busy on hot summer weekends. We recommend going during the week. You’ll appreciate the experience much more.
- Do not attempt to climb the small cliff next to the falls and jump in the water. If you injure yourself in the Oneonta Gorge, you'll have a long wait before emergency personnel can get to you.
- Type: Out and back
- Distance: 0.6 miles round trip
- Elevation Gain: 400 feet
- Difficulty: Easy
- Family Friendly: No
- Restrooms: Yes
- Trailhead Pass: No
Gorge Trailhead Passes Guide
Preserve the Wonder Hike Challenge
This spring’s hike challenge highlights the many wonders of the Gorge.