Adirondack Trail to Barneveld and Hinckley Lake

On August 19th, 2006, we ventured on a serene road trip to the cusp of the Adirondack State Trail around Hinckley Lake.

We drove up Route 12 to see the village of Barneveld, NY. The village was originally called Oldenbarneveldt, founded by Gerrit Boon (I assume they named Boonville, NY, after him). My kids took great fancy to the name Oldenbarneveldt, and chattered in the Swedish Chef accent for most of the trip.

We traversed down Boon Street (named for guess who) and came across the sweetest little library we have ever seen. Too bad it was closed.

Barneveld Library1

There was a nice walking trail behind it, which followed a small stream. Parts of the trail were filled with debris and some of the landscaping weed barrier beneath the pebbles had washed up. The trail was an obvious victim of the severe flooding that struck this area in June.

There was not much happening in the bustling downtown of Barneveld (actually, we didn’t see a soul, anywhere) so we pegged up Route 365 and then to Route 28 to see what adventure (or trouble) we could find. We went through so many areas and small roads that I had trouble keeping track of where we were. It also didn’t help that the 1980 map I was using had torn at the crease that depicted this particular area. Grr.

I turned back to Barneveld (southward, now) and tried to locate Trenton Falls, which I hear has “no rival in sublimity on this side of the Rocky Mountains.” Unfortunately, this sign met us at the Trenton Chasm, near Dover Road.

Trenton Falls CLOSED1


We did get out of the car and walked across the bridge here. The bridge afforded nice views of West Canada Creek. Looking north:

Upstream West Canada Creek1

and looking south:

Looking Down West Canada Creek1

The creek really swelled during the June floods. The damage was unprecedented for this area. You can see how high the creek must have risen to gouge out this area:

West Canada Creek Flood Damage1

That must be a 20 foot drop!

The rock strata looking north was really interesting. Here’s a close-up:

Rock Strata Closer1

So, not finding much else to see near Trenton Falls, we decided to make our way to Hinckley Lake, the source for all tap water in the Mohawk Valley.

Somewhere in the area, we came across a beautiful stone bridge nestled in an area of nice homes. We first thought it led to a park, but as we wended our way up, we realized it was a private home. They keep their properties looking so beautiful up here!

Stone Bridge on Cincinnati Creek1

We went Route 28 west and joined Route 8 north, to Poland and Cold Brook, beautifully rural areas. We continued on Route 8 north, seeing no towns. Road signs said we were on the Adirondack Trail. If there were no signs, I think we might have known that we’d entered the mighty Adirondacks: the smell of pines and cedars filled our van as we wended up the foothills. Oh, the joy!

We came across a parking area, and stopped to read a historical sign. We love these things! We are really “into” early American history. Click the photo below to go to the Flickr page, then click “all sizes” to see a very large size.

NYS Parking Area Sign1

We continued up Route 8 until meeting again with Route 365, where we now reached the tip of Hinckley Lake. We followed Route 365 (which runs along the west side of the lake) to take us back to Barneveld. The lake is pretty enough. The shore line is very sandy. I could also see large mounds of silt and sand below the water. It seemed unusually silty. Perhaps this is due to all the flooding this summer.

We saw four abandoned concrete pillars at one resting stop along the lake. Seagulls (one seagull per pillar) perched on them.

Four Pillars of Hinckley Lake1

On our way, we saw a road sign that tickled our fancy. Someone had scrubbed out the “G” in the middle of the word. Funny! Incidentally, that floating yellow ball is not an alien– it’s my van’s antennae topper.

Cookin Ham Rd1

So, for a road trip, this was nice. It was free (except for gas) and now we can say that we have actually been to the Adirondacks!

About the Author

I've been traveling throughout New York State since I got the travel bug after touring the Herkimer Home on a school field trip as a youngster. We've been blogging about our travels since 2006 and have visited over half of New York's 62 counties so far.

Comments (5)

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  1. sandy says:

    Thanks for your nice photo essay. You have inspired me to take a trip to this area.

  2. […] Today’s Photo Hunters scavenger hunt is Unique or Funny Signs. The first thing I thought of was a funny sign we saw when we drove through part of the Adirondacks. You can read about our trip here. […]

  3. Dan Cookinham says:

    This Road was named after my family. It was originally misspelled so my uncle’s scraped the “g” off the sign.

  4. Joe Ralph says:

    Well, I grew up in Barneveld/Trenton Falls and know all of these areas very well. I left there in 1971 at the age of 12 and have never really been back on any kind of meaningful visit since. I sure do miss it so. Perhaps one of these days I’ll make it back and take a hike to the Trenton Falls Gorge where I haven’t been since 1969! Thank you for the wonderful photos. They sure do bring back a flood of very nice memories.