New Hope Mills Falls
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Hope Mills, New Hope Falls
-20 minutes south of the village of
in the small village of New Hope. Located in close
proximity to the Bahar Nature Preserve and Bear Swamp State Forest
and the beautiful Carpenter Falls.
GPS/Locations - New Hope Mills Falls: N 42.79910 / W
76.34614, Falls at Glen Haven Rd.: N 42.79776 / W 76.34561
Directions - Take route 20 towards Skaneateles
until you reach Route 41A (west lake road). Travel south
down West Lake Road 12 miles until you see a green sign for
‘New Hope’. Shortly thereafter, there will be a sign on the
left for New Hope Mills. Take a left, and pull down a rough
gravel road to the parking area in front of the Mill. Or use
Number of falls:
Numerous, 4 main ones, of which 3 are directly accessible.
Size/Types: The falls are the result of the two mill
ponds that power the mill. There is an upper mill pond with
a twenty-four-foot waterfall before the sawmill. The lower
mill pond before the flour mill has a twenty-eight-foot
waterfall. Water can be stored overnight in the upper pond
to run the mill the following day. There is also a small
seasonal waterfall downstream from the mill, and numerous
Best time to visit: Spring, Summer and Fall.
Flow: Relatively constant – regulated by the mill
Waterway: Bear Swamp Creek
Time: 30 minutes.
June 1st – Labor Day, 9am-4pm, although the mill isn’t open
all year, you can still park at the end of the parking lot
off-season/ off hours and walk down around the mill and
photograph it. Keep in mind that the mill is on
private property and that the owners may consider some
activities loitering. Please be respectful of
Parking: Plenty at the mill.
Admission: Free, Pancake mix will cost you.
Handicap accessibility: yes
Pets: not allowed.
Accommodations: outhouses in the area.
Mills is the only factory still in existence on Bear Swamp
Creek, located at a unique juncture that uses the waterpower
of the creek as it is channeled through the gorge. Although the waterwheel
is most visible, the mill's real power comes from the water
turbine underneath the mill. The turbine can run all year
round providing there is sufficient water.
Two man-made waterfalls a covered bridge and the historic
mills make this area a unique attraction for the nature,
history and pancake
There's not much of a trail
here, but you
can easily walk around the mill.
From the parking lot,
cross the covered bridge over Bear Swamp Creek (and a small
cascade) and view the mill from the side, along with the
waterwheel and the 28 foot plunge. If you continue on the
well defined path, you can walk further on about 50 yards or
so and you’ll come to the seasonal waterfall and a unique
area that you can view the mill and the waterfalls directly
on through the trees.
To access the
upper falls, either walk or drive back up the road you came
down until you reach the old sawmill that is right next to
the bridge. Walk across the bridge, and down the hill on the
opposite side of the first mill pond. You can get various
views of the other waterfall from this area.
The flour mill was built by Judge Charles
Kellogg. He was a member of the New York State Assembly
(1808-09, 1821-22) and later reelected to Congress (1825).
Judge Kellogg sold the mill to Horace Rounds in 1851. The
mill remained in the rounds family until 1947. The mill was
then sold to Howard Weed, Hubert Latta, and Leland Weed; the
mill became New Hope Mills at this time. Dale Weed became
the sole owner in 2001 when David entered the presence of
his Lord and Savior in Heaven.
The flour mill
and a saw mill a short distance upstream are known as New
Hope Mills Inc. There were 15 water powered industries along
the banks of Bear Swamp Creek in the 1850's. Now, only these
two mills remain as a tribute to New Hope Mills' unique
contends that the community of New Hope was given its name
from the top of its new flour mill in 1823. After the mill's
forty-foot, five-sided ridge pole was put in place, a man
climbed to the top and threw a gallon jug of whiskey over
his shoulder declaring the town of Sodom to be renamed to
originally contained three runs of stone and had a capacity
of 200 bushels a day. In 1892, the mill began grinding with
roller mills which are still in the mill today.
New Hope Mills
has been a water powered industry from its beginning. The
most visible item for water power is the overshot
waterwheel. In 1972, the wheel was brought from New Jersey.
The wheel was about 100 years old and very rusted which made
it necessary for the buckets to be rebuilt of wood. In 1978,
the buckets were rebuilt of sheet-metal that would have been
used in making Brockway fenders. It is jokingly known as the
only Brockway waterwheel in the world.
modern, complex, and industrial society, the old fashioned
way used here consistently produces quality without
pollution! In fact, at New Hope Mills, the water is improved
by its use; it is aerated as it passes over the waterwheel
or through the turbine. The wheel does not put a drop of
petroleum into the water because the wheel bearing is made
of rare wood Lignum vitae that has its own lubricant.
in close proximity to the Bahar Nature Preserve and Bear Swamp State Forest.–
great place for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding,
Preserve. A few miles north lies one of the Finger Lakes
Land Trust's most prized treasures. This 25-acre woodland
contains the Bear Swamp Creek Ravine
and a 65-foot natural beach.
Skaneateles Lake. Access is either through the town
of Scott the Bahar Preserve.
New Hope Mill's premier products are their specialty pancake
mixes, which include Apple Cinnamon, Blueberry, Cranberry
and Buttermilk. You can order New Hope Mills products here.
▪ Either of the 3 main mill
pond cascades are easy to access and take pictures of. The
best pictures of the mill and the lower waterfall are
obtained by crossing the covered bridge and taking a
wide-angle shot of the mill, waterwheel, and the waterfall.
Use wide-angle lenses along with a polarizer to get the
silky effect on the long exposure of the water.
▪ See the Articles section
for more waterfall photography tips.
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About the Bahar Nature Preserve
Finger Lakes Land Trust buys Carpenter Falls
New Hope Mills Inc.
181 York Street, Auburn, NY 13021
Phone: (315) 252-2676
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