To truly appreciate the varied landscapes of Herkimer County, the hiker should have an understanding of the topography and geology of the county. The advance and retreat of glaciers approximately 10,000 years ago has created several distinct landforms within the county. The Mohawk River bisects the region along an east-west axis. South of the river, the upland front of the Appalachian Plateau abruptly rises from the river plain to elevations near 1,000 feet with summits near 1,800 feet at the County’s southern border. North of the river, the land rises more gradually to elevations of approximately 1,500 feet near the Adirondack Park boundary. The northern most portion of the county lies within the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains and includes abruptly ﬂuctuating elevations ranging from 1,500 to 2,500 feet.
A wide variety of soils classiﬁed as “glacial till” exist in many upland areas of the County. The glacial till can be shale, siltstone, or granite. Herkimer County is also the home of the “Herkimer Diamond” which is a double-ter-minated quartz crystal found in exposed outcrops of dolos-tone in the Little Falls and Middleville areas of the County.
These unique crystals, formed during the Cambrian age, approximately 500 million years ago, shine like a diamond. Portions of four major drainage basins lie within Herkimer County including: the St. Lawrence—Oswsegatchie River Basin, Susquehanna River Basin, Mohawk River Basin, and Black River Basin. The mountainous northern por-tion of the County contains many natural and man-made lakes and ponds that are used for a variety of purposes including: drinking water, power generation, ﬂood control, navigation, recreation, and ﬁsh and wildlife habitat.
The trail guide and website is an introduction to the trails of one of the most scenic areas in New York State, Herkimer County. We hope that this publication will encourage outdoor recreation for both residents and visitors alike.
The guide is a sampler of state and local trails throughout the county that provides day hikes for individuals and families looking to enjoy the outdoors.
We wish to acknowledge the assistance of representa-tives of; the Herkimer-Oneida County Planning Depart-ment who took the time to train HCHN staff on GIS/GPS mapping, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for providing information on NY State trails, Herkimer County E911 and John Cipriano for technical support, and to our many volunteers for hiking and mapping the trails and providing information and photos for this publication.
This project was funded by the New York State Department of Health Creating Healthy Places to Live Work and Play Grant (administered by Herkimer County HealthNet) and with the support of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
Use of the information on this website and guide is at the sole discretion and risk of the user. Herkimer County HealthNet and its contributors have made every effort to provide current, accurate information. However, trail conditions are always changing. If you note a discrepancy in this guide or wish to forward a suggestion, please address your comments to:
Herkimer County HealthNet, Inc.
320 N. Main Street - Suite 3300 Herkimer, NY 13350