Revel in the sound of rushing waterfalls, the cooling sensations of splashing river water, and the scenic lakeside views on aquatic excursions. LivCo is your destination for your next waterfront escape.
On the western edge of the Finger Lakes, Conesus and Hemlock Lakes offer endless ways to get out on the water during the summertime.
Life is better at the lake, right? A summer getaway to one of LivCo's Finger Lakes can be as relaxing or thrilling as you'd like. Whether you prefer lounging with a book on the dock, bouncing over tranquil waters on a jet ski, or catching the largest fish in the water, there are tons of ways to get out on the water on a warm summer's day.
The Finger Lakes Region is known for wineries, small towns, and, of course, lakes. But contrary to what some may believe, the Finger Lakes are not just five lakes like fingers on a hand. There are, in fact, eleven of them, including Conesus and Hemlock in LivCo, on the western edge of the Finger Lakes.
During the summertime, Conesus and Hemlock Lake offer distinct ways to get out on the water. After spending time on the water, you can explore the surrounding towns and villages which are home to restaurants, shopping, and plenty of non-water-based activities.
Conesus Lake takes its name from the Native American word “Gah-Ne-A-Sos” meaning the berry place. Here, you might find the beautifully mysterious turtle-like stones, or Conesus stones as they are known around the world. These stones were formed in the ice age when glacial debris 10,000 feet thick created dams that built the Finger Lakes, and they’ve been found as far away as Siberia and Iceland.
Visit Conesus Lake on July 3rd when annually after nightfall, locals and visitors participate in the old Seneca tradition of setting flares all around the shoreline, known as the "Ring of Fire". The Seneca would do this to celebrate the beauty and abundance of the lake.
As the only Finger Lake that did not keep its Native American name (“Onehda Tecarneodi”), Hemlock Lake was named for the hemlock trees that grow around it, which prefer cool, moist locations and grow under taller trees. Hemlock is smaller than Conesus, with one big difference - it’s virtually undeveloped.
Hemlock has been noted as an important bird conservation area. In the 1970s, the last wild bald eagle in New York was found nesting at the south end of the lake. Since then, diligent work to restore bald eagles has resulted in over 300 bald eagle nests - with dozens in the area. They are no longer endangered and are now a common sight. While visiting LivCo, check out the mural First Flight in downtown Livonia. Painted by Rochester native Justin Suarez, the mural depicts two eagles flying over Hemlock Lake.
Ride the WavesBack to Top of List
Whether it's jetskiing, wakeboarding, or tubing, tie up your gear to a boat and ride the waves of Conesus Lake - you'll feel like you're flying across the water. Or hop on a jet ski and sail across the water at high speed. Save these activities for Conesus Lake, activities at Hemlock Lake are slower paced, and large motorized water vessels are not allowed to keep the lake tranquil.
Rent a Pontoon BoatBack to Top of List
Conesus Lake is well-known for "floatillas" and pontooning all summer long. With many boat rental options close to the lake, you'll find the perfect fit for you and your party. Take your vessel onto the water, drop an anchor, and enjoy the summer sun! Want the boat experience without having to steer? Tropical Creations Boat Rental offers charter cruises on their pontoon boat with their skipper ready to entertain.
If you don't need to rent, you might prefer the slower pace of Hemlock Lake. Keep in mind, boats can be no longer than 16 feet and outboard motors no larger than 10 horsepower. If you want to take the boat for a spin, you’ll be back in no time - it only takes 30 minutes to circle the lake!
Catch a Big FishBack to Top of List
Try your hand at fishing with the help of Upstate Anglers Guide Service, which offers fishing charters on Conesus Lake. Specializing in Bass, Walleye, Pike, and panfish, Upstate Anglers caters to all types of anglers, from experienced to first-timers to everyone in between. Your four or six-hour charter will be hosted by two expert guides who have years of experience fishing. You'll get to fish in a fully rigged tournament bass boat equipped with the latest technology.
Paddle Through NatureBack to Top of List
From kayaks to stand-up paddleboards, canoes to paddleboats, no matter which you prefer, the lakes of LivCo are ideal for paddling. Explore Conesus Lake Inlet Wildlife Area where you'll see wildlife including geese, herons, woodpeckers, and turtles or paddle along the water of Hemlock Lake where you might spot a bald eagle flying overhead.
Looking for more aquatic adventures? Discover our abundance of rivers, waterfalls, and pools.
Make a Splash at Letchworth State Park
Longing for some relaxation in the heart of nature? Head to the Harvey Pool at Letchworth State Park. Set in the backdrop of natural surroundings, this pool is the perfect spot for cannonballs, swimming laps, or sunbathing by the water. Drive into the park through the Mount Morris entrance and the pool is just minutes down the road.
Cool Down at Stony Brook State Park
Covering hundreds of acres of breathtaking natural land, Stony Brook State Park is known for its gorge and waterfalls which flow down into a spring-fed natural pool that keeps cool throughout the summer. Not only is the water cool and refreshing, it's incredibly clear and vibrant with turquoise hues that make this spot a true hidden gem. Stony Brook is also filled with campsites, cabins, picnic tables, restrooms, hiking trails, and a playground for everyone to enjoy.
Experience the Rush of Waterfalls
The Genesee River Valley offers a bounty of cascading waterfalls, trickling down rocks or plunging 60 feet into the mist below. Explore the falls of Letchworth State Park or take a guided tour of Fall Brook Falls with Trail Otter, whatever you prefer there are all kinds of ways to experience waterfalls in LivCo.
Raft along the Grand Canyon of the East
Experience one-of-a-kind whitewater rafting through Letchworth State Park. Adventure Calls Outfitters offers rafting trips across more than five miles of spectacular scenery and fun rapids for you and fellow paddlers. On warm days, you can cool off by body surfing the "New Wave Rapids" or get soaking wet at the "The Leap of Faith." With a little luck, you may even see some wildlife in the park.
Paddle the Genesee River Blueway
The Genesee River Blueway is the perfect way to enjoy kayaking or canoeing in a peaceful setting. Wind down the Genesee River on a warm summer's day with a group of friends or family, just be sure to check river conditions prior to starting your trip, know your route, and paddle within your abilities.