Northern New York Waterfalls 
Northern New York Waterfalls ... Monument Falls

Monument Falls


From the intersection of NY 73 and NY 86 in the village of Lake Placid head northeast on route 86.  In about 4.4 miles, there is a parking lot on the left.  The falls are just beyond that.

County: Essex
Town: North Elba
USGS Map: Lake Placid
Waterway: Ausable River West Branch
Latitude: N 44o 18' 42"
Longitude: W 73o 54' 55"
Drop: 5'
Type: Ledge
Region: NY 86 between Lake Placid and Wilmington
Parking: Paved lot
Trail type: Dirt/grass
Length of hike: <0.1 mile/2 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Accessibility: Public
Name: Official

Lake Placid Quadrangle

This location is just upstream from High Falls Gorge, a very popular Adirondack tourist attraction featuring waterfalls.  In the parking area, you will find two monuments, mounted next to each other on a single cemented stone foundation.  The one on the left was erected in 1985 by the NYS Environmental Conservation Department to commemorate "the one hundredth anniversary of New York State's Forest Preserve."  The other one was placed 50 years prior commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the same event.  We left wondering why they weren't placed in chronological order!

From here, walk further up the highway inside the guard-rails.  You will find a number of easy trails leading to the river where you can get on the rocks for a water-level view.  This is a very popular fishing area and there may be a number of vehicles in the parking lot.  Many of the anglers, however, go away from the falls to fish.

This is a small cascade but is very pretty and the surroundings are even prettier.  Only about a five foot drop, it is nestled below a number of prominent mountains, including Whiteface Mountain, New York State's fifth highest point.  The drop is split between a horseshow shaped slide on the near side of the river and a curtain cascade on the other.

Like many of the roadside, and more distant, Adirondack locations, Monument Falls would be a nice place to enjoy your lunch or snack.

The West Branch of the Ausable River merges with the east branch a few miles downstream from here in Au Sable Forks.  The combined Ausable River empties into Lake Champlain in the town of Peru.

Last update:  July 27, 2015

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