Northern New York Waterfalls 

Kosterville Falls/Magilla


From the village of Lyons Falls, travel east on the Lyonsdale Road until you reach the Shibley Road where you should turn left.  The first gravel road on the right after crossing the bridge takes you in to a hydroelectric facility.

County: Lewis
Town: Lyonsdale
USGS Map: Port Leyden
Waterway: Moose River
Latitude: N 43° 36' 49"
Longitude: W 75° 19' 55"
Drop: 25'
Type: Rectangular Block
Region: Southeast Lewis County
Parking: Unpaved lot
Trail type: Dirt
Length of hike: Less than 1 minute
Difficulty: Easy
Accessibility: Private, access allowed
Name: Common

Port Leyden Quadrangle

Kosterville FallsThe hydroelectric facility at this location is identified as Lyons Falls Hydroelectric Kosterville Site.  Behind the plant there is a waterfall below the dam.  The most popular name of this drop is Magilla, a name given by the whitewater community.

Although there has been quite a bit of confusion on our part about this location, we have come to realize that before the hydro dam and before the popularity of whitewater kayaking, this waterfall was originally known as Kosterville Falls.  

Our confusion stemmed from the fact that we have found online references that identified Kosterville Falls as the river right portion of the Gouldtown Hydro Site just downstream of this location.  Other references called this location Kosterville Falls.  Goulds Mills was a community on the south side of the river and Kosterville was on the north side.  Neither of these communities exist, per se, today.

After much research and conversations with a number of local residents who have spent their entire life in this area, we have determined that Magilla and Kosterville Falls are most likely one and the same and the entire span of the river at the Gouldtown Site is in fact, Goulds Mills Falls.

We have pictures of this drop from both sides of the river.  The property on the south bank is private but, as personal friends, we were granted permission to access it.  We have photos from August 2011 when it was particularly dry and others from May 2014 which followed one of the wildest winters on record.  In addition, two inches of rain fell the day before we were there.

It is interesting to note that the water level through this stretch makes a dramatic impact on the appearance of each section.  High water and low water comparisons almost make this look like a different waterfall!

The Moose River flows into the Black River just a few miles downstream from this location in Lyons Falls.  The Black empties into Lake Ontario in the Jefferson County community of Dexter.

Last update:  April 25, 2017

Hover on any of the thumbnails to see an enlarged image

Kosterville Falls Kosterville Falls
Kosterville Falls Kosterville Falls
Kosterville Falls Kosterville Falls

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