Plotter Kill Falls is one of the hidden gem of Capital District, NY. The waterfall (actually there are three waterfalls there) is located in near Rotterdam in Schenectady County, New York.

The waterfall is located in the newly-renovated Plotter Kill Preserve.

If you visited the preserve a couple of years ago and was disappointed in how the trails are marked and maintained, give it another chance now. It has got so much better!

How High Is Plotter Kill Falls?

The are three waterfalls in the Plotter Kill Preserve, the highest of which is called Upper Falls. It is 60 feet (18 meters) high.

How Far is Plotter Kill Falls?

Plotter Kill Falls is within a short 10-minute drive from Schenectady, and within a 30-minute drive from Albany.

There are three parking lots providing access to Plotter Kill Falls but the best one is one off Mariaville Road, especially if you want to see the waterfalls.

The trip to the base of the Upper Falls and back to the car took us a couple of hours but only because we took a lot of time to enjoy the waterfall. It can be done within one hour.

Plotter Kill Falls Trail Map

The trail map to the Plotter Kill Falls may be confusing, mainly because the “Red trail” is actually marked as orange on the map.

Here I am highlighting the route to the base of the Upper Falls in yellow: You start at the blue trail, then turn right, cross the bridge, follow the orange trail and then use the yellow trail to go down to the base of the gorge.

Mind that the yellow trail ends by the kill, so you will have to walk back along the brook to get to the waterfall. I have marked that part of the route in red because it is not an official trail:

Plotter Kill Falls Trail Map

The trails are well marked, so you are unlikely to get lost!

If you want to get to the base of the waterfall, turn left here to find the RED trail. Note that this is actually the orange trail if you look at the trail map but who am I to judge? If you follow the blue trail, you’ll find two observation points to see both the Upper and the Lower falls from the top. This is an easier trail but you won’t see too much because of the trees!

Is Plotter Kill Falls Accessible?

Both the Upper and the Lower Falls have neat observation points that are accessed from a wide trail which may be accessible throughout the year. Look for blue signs to access the trail.

The trail to the base of the waterfall has steps and is also quite steep!

Is Plotter Kill Falls Kid-Friendly?

Yes, we were able to bring a four-year old and had no issues. We were holding her hand most of the time though because the trail winds along the deep gorge, so it may be quite easy to fall down unless you exercise caution.

Plotter Kill Falls rocky gorge
Plotter Kill Falls has a pretty steep rocky walls on both sides.

Overall, we love going to the Plotter Kill Preserve and watching the waterfall. Totally recommended if you are in the are!

In winter you are likely to see a lot of ice climbers

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