Cumming Nature Center

Photo: Cumming Nature Center

A living museum

Excellent walking trails full of historical and artful exhibits.

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Naples, NY

42.705941, -77.454081

Trail Information

Total Trail Length: 8.3 mi.

Maintained By

Cumming Nature Center

585-374-6160

http://www.rmsc.org/cumming-nature-center/

Consult the administrator listed above for authoritative information about this location.  Trail conditions change with weather and other factors.  You are responsible for your own safety.  The Finger Lakes Land Trust does not assume responsibility for the condition of trails or any difficulties or hazards that you may encounter in the outdoors.  Be safe!  Safety and disclaimers.

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When looking at the Cumming Nature Center’s simple trail map brochure, it’s hard to appreciate all that the trails have to offer.  Acting as the Rochester Museum & Science Center’s “living museum,” the 900-acre preserve does an exceptional job at just that.

Separated into five thematically different loops, the excellent walking trails are full of historical and artful exhibits as well as informational placards that accentuate the experience.  Indeed, the information provided is so dense in spots you might find more people reading than actually walking.  This is of course appropriate, since the trails are flat, easy, and more conducive to a leisurely pace than arduous hike.

But just because they are easy trails doesn’t mean they are short on features.  The trails explore an array of environs ranging from a thirty five-acre beaver pond, sections of scrub land, meandering wooded streams, open marshes, and deep forests.  Trails are well-marked with blazes and have clear signage at intersections.  Additionally, the footpaths are superbly maintained and often broad enough to walk two abreast.

The trail infrastructure features two observation towers, one that overlooks the beaver pond and one that reaches high into the canopy of the Conservation Trail.  The former provides panoramic views of the pond and picturesque marshland, while the latter might just help you sight the elusive forest birds that are so often heard but rarely seen in the tree canopy.

Acting as the ‘living museum’ for Rochester Museum & Science Center, the 900-acre preserve does an exceptional job…

Numerous trail shelters, boardwalks, and bridges have been built utilizing lumber produced by the circular sawmill seen along the Conservation Trail.  Demonstrations of the sawmill in use occur throughout the year.  Though closed in late November, the center reopens during the winter and has groomed trails and equipment rentals.

Trails are free to the public but there is suggested donation of $3 per person or $10 per family and access is limited to foot travel only.  Like many nature centers, the Cumming Nature Center has ongoing, informative events for aspiring naturalists of any age.  Particularly popular is the maple sugaring events in late March.  The center also features a “forest school” for preschool children, where everyday outdoor education hopes to inspire through hands-on purposeful learning activities.

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