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Three Falls
Woods

 

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Three Falls Woods is an unknown gem located in the triangle between Sweet Road, NY 173, and Troop K Road in the Town as well as Village of Manlius.  Three Falls Woods is 175 acres of hardwood forest, a maze of paths, boulders, trees, waterfalls, cliffs and rock outcroppings.  These woods is accessed at the along Sweet Road. There is a CNY Land Trust Parking Area along Sweet Road. It is recommended to park here. You should contact the Village and Town of Manlius to verify current status of this area.

Three distinct waterfalls are formed by two tributaries of Limestone Creek as they tumble fifty to sixty feet over the edge of the Onondaga Escarpment. The Three Falls area starts very close to NY 173 near Sweet Road where the north flowing stream emerges from crossing under the road. At this point the land drops of steeply forming a series of steps for the water to cascade over, hence the name Staircase Falls. The other small stream comes in from the west cascades over a nice staircase section up above then branches before falling over the escarpment in two places. The Tall Twins is the name given to the middle falls because of the dividing of the water near the top and the high vertical drop. The third falls is called "The Cascades".  All the water pours into a small bowl shaped gorge open to the northeast and surrounded by tall cliffs. On the floor of the bowl the waters combine and flow gently down slope to merge eventually with Limestone creek.

This area was once used as farmland, pastures and light quarrying. This area was also quarried to supply limestone for the building of the Erie Canal and the making of quicklime for making hydraulic cement. There are numerous paths or old cavalry bridle paths that crisscross the now wooded land and many old rock walls that must have delineated the pastures and property lines remain.

Directions:  NY 173 to Sweet Road in Manlius. There is a small parking area courtesy of CNY Land Trust. Address for the parking area is 4816 Sweet Road.

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Waterfalls at Three Falls Woods

We were also given this map below that shows the private land owners, so you'll want to stay on the CNY Land Trust properties.

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