​​​Barberville Falls: An Iconic Plateau Destination

The Barberville Falls Preserve is now owned and stewarded by the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance. The 92-foot waterfall is one of the most iconic spots on the Plateau. RPA thanks The Nature Conservancy for entrusting us with this beautiful preserve and transferring it to us along with enough funding to match two grants for improving infrastructure at the site.
 

Please Respect Private Property
Please note that the Preserve owns just half of the falls, to the centerline of the creek.The other side of the creek is private property. Please respect the privacy of our neighbors. The neighbors have reported recently that people are walking through their yard to get to the falls and are coming onto their property and not leaving when asked.

Please help us keep the Preserve open for all to enjoy. Please obey all rules, stay on the property and report any violations that you see.

 

Get Involved

We have convened a committee of neighbors, community members and lovers of the preserve to help us make management decisions and take care of the land and trails.

 

If you would like more information or would like to get involved you may call (518) 712-9211 or e-mail jim@rensselaerplateau.org. Our goal is to allow people to enjoy this special place year round while maintaining a positive experience for the neighbors and community.


About Barberville Falls

Barberville Falls is an iconic waterfall on the western edge of the Rensselaer Plateau, emblematic of the area's natural treasures. The 140-acre Barberville Falls Preserve features an excellent and healthy example of a hemlock-northern hardwood forest. It's free of invasive species and home to spring ephemeral wildflowers and diverse wildlife.

Above the falls, the Poesten Kill drains about 35 square miles of the Rensselaer Plateau — an area from Dyken Pond on the north to Taborton on the south. The stream flows down this dramatic waterfall and then passes through a deep gorge.

Trails

Falls Trail
The Falls Trail leaves from the main parking area at 23 Blue Factory Road. In a short distance, it begins a steep traversing descent to the bottom of the falls. Visitors can see the stoneworks of an unfinished mill project from the bottom. Round trip is approximately a quarter mile.

Ridge Trail
The Ridge Trail leaves from the main parking area at 23 Blue Factory Road. The trail is generally well-defined and marked with orange diamonds or orange ribbon.

The trail starts out rocky as it winds its way around a flattened stone fence but quickly joins up with what was probably an old cart path used by the neighboring farm. Right before that intersection is a junction for the loop the trail makes as it returns to the parking lot.

At approximately 0.75 of a mile, the trail makes a sharp left onto a less wide but still well defined path through the woods. The trail crosses four tributaries to the Poesten Kill, but they are narrow and stepping stones allow for dry crossings. The trail comes to the Poesten Kill opposite the Creek Trail, then climbs a ridge along the stream.

While there are occasional glimpses of the falls  from the trail, hemlocks block a clear view. Round trip is approximately 1.3 miles.

Creek Trail
The Creek Trail is located just northwest of the small parking area along Plank Road. It is a smooth, trail marked with gray markers. It descends a slope to the banks of the Poesten Kill, then continues a short distance upstream and downstream. Round trip is approximately one mile. Beyond the ends of the trail in both directions is private property. Please obey the signs and respect private property.

What to Expect

There's much to do to plan out parking, trail improvements, and safety and security for visitors. Please stay tuned for more news regarding next steps,

and bear with us as we make this a great, and safe, place to visit!

Do you have thoughts or ideas about this project? Contact RPA Executive Director Jim Bonesteel, jim@rensselaerplateau.org  or (518) 712-9211.

Barberville Falls. Photo: Annie Jacobs

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Directions to Barberville Falls Preserve, 23 Blue Factory Road, Averill Park, NY 12018 (in the Town of Poestenkill).

 

The main parking area for the Preserve is at 23 Blue Factory Road. Limited parking for the Creek Trail is located across from the cemetery at 280 Plank Road.

Please help ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all visitors and neighbors by following our rules for visitors.

 

Rensselaer Plateau Alliance, Inc.

Conservation Through Community

(518) 712-9211 | info@rensselaerplateau.org

Postal: PO Box 790, Averill Park, NY 12018

Office: 17 Old Route 66, Averill Park, NY 12018

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Background photo: Nate Simms