With cooler temperatures and changing leaves, fall is the perfect time for a hike.

That recently led me to Baldwinsville.

Beaver Lake Nature Center opened its doors in 1970 (the county had acquired most of the land, which was previously used for farming and a waterfowl refuge, seven years earlier). Today, its nine trails range in length from 0.3 to 3 miles, and wind through wetlands, meadows, forests and more. I recommend the Lakeview Trail, which offers views of its 200-acre glacial lake, and the Bog Trail, a 0.6-mile trail with an elevated boardwalk and observation tower. All were clearly marked, and I enjoyed reading the educational signs along the way.

And there is always something going on – Beaver Lake Nature Center hosts a variety of events throughout the year. One of the most popular, Enchanted Beaver Lake, is held each October, and features more than 400 carved pumpkins spread across two of its trails (this year’s event is sold out). Families can also go on a themed guided walk with a naturalist through the month of November.

It’s a great place to spend a fall day.

If You Go
Beaver Lake Nature Center
8477 E. Mud Lake Road, Baldwinsville.
When: Daily from 7 a.m.-dusk (except Thanksgiving, Christmas).
Admission: $5/vehicle.
More information:


Courtney Kless is the Editor in Chief of Family Times. Courtney is originally from Maryland. She earned her Master’s degree in Magazine, Newspaper and Online Journalism from Syracuse University. Courtney began her career as a sports journalist, then spent several years working in higher education, before joining the company in August 2019. She enjoys traveling, reading and hiking, and recently adopted a Labrador Retriever, Bailey.

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