Ellison Park Wetlands

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Formerly known as the Rifle Range, this park area has been purchased by Monroe County and is now open to the public as a network of trails adjacent to where the Irondequoit Creek empties into the bay.  The area covers some steep topography and the trails are generally moderate to difficult for hiking. In the northern part of the park, the colored trails take you through the hills and past several old stone stairways and the remains of old building foundations.  As you proceed south, the trail parallels the creek. 

The main white trail doesn't quite extend all the way to Ellison Park, but does come out to the abandoned Old Brown Croft Road extension, which is within a quarter of mile of the hiking trails at the northern boundary of the other park.  Unfortunately, there is no easy or obvious way for a hiker to cross Atlantic Road or follow the creek to reach the other park.

  • Starting in late summer, black flies can be a real nuisance, you might considering bringing along bug spray and/or full-cover clothing. 
  • The lesser traveled (steeper) trails such as the blue, salmon, and red trails can become overgrown toward the end of summer and difficult to navigate.


    The primary, most traveled trail is the white trail.  The blue, salmon, yellow, and red trails in the northern part of the park all branch off from the white trail, generally climbing up the steeper hills.  The trails are generally marked on trees with painted trail markers.  In the northern section, a few wooden trail signs have been erected at trail junctions. 

However, following a particular trail can still be a challenge. Some trails, such as the salmon and red trails, have multiple branches so it can be difficult to know without a compass or GPS which way to go.  It can also be easy to confuse the pink and salmon trails.

In other places, connector trails, mainly the Blue-White trail or the Yellow-White trail are marked with both colors and can easily be confused with one or the other of the main trails.  For example, it is easy to miss the northern trail head to the blue trail and instead get on the blue-white trail and inadvertently circle back.  Similarly, its easy to miss the turn on the white trail onto the yellow-white trail, missing the white trail loop down by the creek.  Instead, you'll find that you're all of a sudden on the yellow trail, but if you keep going you'll wind up back on the white trail, unsure if you should turn right or left.

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