Hiking along the Genesee: Indian Fort Nature Preserve

Indian Fort Nature Preserve, Geneseo Area, 2.2 miles of trails

This heavily wooded preserve, owned by the Genesee Valley Conservancy, is a hidden gem on the east bank of the Genesee River in the town of Geneseo, Livingston County. The 60-acre tract takes its name from 100-foot-long log-and-earth palisades that Seneca residents built centuries ago to protect a settlement there. The palisades are gone but the deep ravines that also guarded the village remain, as do dramatic waterfalls and 2.2 miles of well-marked hiking trails that are easy to moderate in difficulty with some steep sections. One of the trails leads down to the Genesee River, where the conservancy maintains a landing for kayaks and canoes. The property’s history as the site of a Seneca fortification led to its inclusion on the National Registry of Historic Places.

A trail map and other information is available on Indian Fort’s web page.

 The property is on Jones Bridge Road, which runs west from Route 63 about 1.75 miles south of the village of Geneseo. (Note that the preserve is on the east side of the river. Another section of Jones Bridge Road can be found on the west side of the river but there is no bridge connecting the two parts of the road.) If one is driving on I-390, get off at Exit 7 and take Route 63 north two miles to Jones Bridge Road.

For people travelling on the water, the preserve has its own landing on the east bank of the Genesee River. It’s on a straight stretch of water with oxbow turns both north and south of the landing.

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