Lower Platte Clove Hike

The early part of the unmarked trail is very easy and one can reach 4 or 5 waterfalls within an easy 30-minute walk.

October 3, 2005

Article was updated on June 27, 2022

I parked my car at the bottom of Platte Clove Mountain Rd along the 6-foot fence. The early part of the unmarked trail is very easy and one can reach 4 or 5 waterfalls within an easy 30-minute walk. The waterfalls range in size from 3 feet to nearly 20 feet. After this relatively flat section the mountainous ravine of Platte Clove closes in and it becomes very difficult at parts to hike and continue. The boulders are tremendous and there are many. The last photo in the series is of a waterfall about 50 feet in height- maybe taller. It took me nearly 1.5 hours to get to this point- which is only 1.5 miles. (I did take several  breaks to take photos.)
I used my GPS receiver to get waypoints and distance to the Devils Kitchen parking area which is located on the upper portion of Platte Clove Road. According to my GPS receiver, I made it to within .2 miles of where the parking area is located. The parking area is another probably well over 200 feet up and at many sections Platte Clove becomes nearly vertical. There is a waterfall that can be seen from the top of Devils Kitchen that may measure taller than Plattekill Falls (over 70 feet). This waterfall is named Bridal Veil Falls.
The hike was amazing and it is somewhat like hiking in Utah. My trip took place before all the heavy rain of 2005 in the Fall season so the creek was a bit sluggish. It appears it is very possible to make it all the way to Plattekill Falls which is found in the upper part of Platte Clove. That will have to wait for another day.


  1. As a young kid (7 yrs. old last time I was there) in the 50’s we used to stay at the Police Camp. Fond memories and we did a little organized hiking but forbidden to go in the woods on our own due to the bears. Was reaquanted as I met someone from Saugerties who frequented Platte Cove snowmobilling and knew everything about the area. NICE!
    Hope some day to get to revisit the area. I recall how treacherous that road was, particularly if you were going south from Platte Cove to West Saugerties.


  2. Hello. Can anyone tell me the name of a waterfall off of Platte Clove Road. The waterfall I’m referring to is found if you go east on Platte Clove Road (heading downhill) and heading towards the stone bridge (before your get to the parking area on the right). Does anyone know the official name of the waterfall on the north side of the bridge? (The Devil’s Kitchen will be on the south side of the bridge). Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.

    1. Today August 20th 2010, I hiked the lower and part of the central part of Plattekill Clove. It was a fantastic hike, with great weather, blue skies etc. In answer to your question, I believe the name could be upper Hellhole Falls. Check out the book picturesque Greene County (The Catskills), which is found in the Kingston NY Library or the town of Ulster Public Library in the reference section, hope I’ve been some help.
      PS This book has a great section on the waterfalls of the Plattekill Clove.

    2. I believe you are talking about Plattekill Falls.

      http://catskillmountaineer.com/KM-Uplatte.html states:

      The upper part of Platte Clove has three water falls. Two of the Falls are the two highest in the clove. the clove has 14 waterfalls that are 20 feet or higher, and 18 water falls all together. This hike will cover three of those falls. The series of waterfalls starts at Overlook Bridge. The first water fall can easily be seen from Overlook Bridge. This first water fall is called Old Mill Falls. It is 15-16 feet high. About 100′ below Old Mill Falls is the top of Plattekill Falls. Plattekill Falls are around 65-70′ high. To get to the bottom of Plattekill Falls you need to hike a substantial amount of distance. Trying to take a short-cut can be very dangerous. About 500′ below Plattekill Falls is Bridal Veil Falls. Bridal Veil Falls is approximately 90′ high. Getting to the bottom of Bridal Veil Falls is very dangerous and NOT recommended. The bottom of Bridal Veil Falls is the beginning of Hell’s Hole. The Falls below Bridal Veil Falls are the two Rainbow Falls. This section is the middle section and is also very difficult.

  3. Wow, you are some photographer! I’ve been here (Platte Clove) a few times, and to many of the other spots as well, especially Kaaterskill Falls, and you really capture the beauty in your photos. Thanks so much for sharing them.

  4. Buenos Dias. Excellent hiking for sure. However, it should be mentioned that your entry point as described traverses private land and town property, which is posted and enforced (this is the town’s drinking water supply). Beyond this area is the preserve, which makes entry to the area somewhat of a predicament. Parking can also be an issue, with the local enforcement issuing tickets with more frequency in the past few years. Also, this is not a marked trail and is not recommended for inexperienced or solo hikers. Trail can be treacherous, so creek may be a better option on some parts of hike.

  5. This brings back so many memorys for me because I lived at the bottom of Platte Clove Road. I have trout fished, been ginsang hunting, gone deer hunting, and have run around all of the surrounding mountains.

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