This time last year Chris and I were staying in Connecticut for the month and spending our weekends going exploring. When all the snow had melted where we were, we went in search of more in upstate New York!
The route to Kaaterskill Falls
It was a fairly long drive from Stamford, but we were amazed with the scenery on the journey to Kaaterskill Falls and the Catskills Mountains. Seeing the Hudson river frozen all the way across was pretty impressive! However, it wasn’t until we had driven a fair way north that we started seeing snowfall again, and as we started climbing the hills, the temperature gauge in the car began to plummet!
We hardly passed anyone on the roads nearing the falls, and we were starting to wonder if everyone else knew something we didn’t! Was there a massive snow storm on its way that we hadn’t heard about on the local news? The smaller roads weren’t particularly well gritted either and those cars that we did pass often had snow chains on them. At least we had hired a four by four though.
So we followed the sat nav and turned into the carpark for Kaaterskill Falls, where there were a couple of other cars, which was quite a relief! Weirdly, (and we weren’t actually there very long) by the time we left, the carpark had actually filled with about ten more cars! So we had clearly not been alone in our desire for a winter walk to see an amazing waterfall. We sat in the car for a few moments daring each other to get out first. It was minus twelve degrees celsius outside. To begin with, the coldness didn’t seem too bad, but as we walked towards the waterfall, the wind picked up a bit, and oh my goodness it was freeeezing! I had a dress and a thick jumper on underneath my coat, and I was still very cold.
The magic of Kaaterskill Falls in winter
It’s going to be difficult to explain how magical it was up there in the Catskills Mountains that day – I have honestly never seen anything like it, even when I went to snowy places skiing as a child. If you imagine being inside a gentle glitter snowglobe – well it was a bit like that! It wasn’t snowflakes that were falling slowly from the sky, it was tiny tiny crystals of ice that sparkled in the sunlight. It was seriously like walking in a fairytale magical land. I took photos (as you can see) and I filmed some of it (not for too long as my hands were so cold!) for my vlog on my YouTube channel, but neither means of digital film picked up the glitteryness! It was stunning, and a surreal experience I will never forget. So if you’re planning on visiting the Kaaterskill Falls in winter, try and go on a sunny day to pick up the sparkles; but what other meteorological conditions you need to look out for for the same effect, I have no idea!
It was a short but icy slippery slopey walk to actually see Kaaterskill Falls, so be prepared with the best grippy boots you own; (ideally with thick woolly socks underneath) and quite possibly walking sticks as well if you own some. However, there is a fence you can cling to most of the way. When you turn the corner to see the waterfall, it is a tremendous sight. But also, what was a small icy breeze becomes a gale in your face, and the word ‘icy’ doesn’t quite cut it. I’ll be honest, we each took a photo, and as much as we would’ve liked to stand and gaze to take in the wonder; we got out of there as quickly as we could! The waterfall was frozen around the edges, but there was enough water flowing to still here the roar of the falls.
The path continues over a bridge and keeps going to what I expect is a beautiful walk. However, as you know, daylight doesn’t last very long in January, and having travelled for so long, we wanted to visit a couple more beauty spots before heading home again. Also, we weren’t really kitted out in the right gear. I wore my much loved red coat that you’ve probably seen quite a bit of if you’ve been around on my blog or youtube channel a while, and had a chunky knitted grey scarf wrapped around to keep me as warm as possible, and although it keeps me nice and warm in England, it wasn’t quite up to the task here! The red stood out against the white snow really well so Chris enjoyed taking a few photos.
Be bold and wear a red coat this winter! Here are a few from Asos to choose from:
And the photography didn’t stop there. With the low sunlight bouncing around the snow and being diffused by sparkly crystals, the conditions were pretty flattering for more portrait photography. We moved amongst the trees and I braved the cold (the things I do for you, you know) to demonstrate how to wear your party dresses beyond the festive season in this blog post.
It was then time to go exploring elsewhere. Some of my favourite photos I took that day are in this post about Ten photos that will make you want to visit New England in Winter. We also stopped at a massive frozen lake for a couple more outfit shoots which are coming soon; and this one of a white maxi dress far more suitable for summer holidays!
Photography tip: Keep your camera under your coat and close to your body to stop the cold from draining your battery. And if your fingers are too cold to fiddle about lifting exposure while you’re there, try boosting the whites in Lightroom afterwards to really bring across how it looks in real life!
I’m so glad we ventured into the Catskill Mountains and to Kaaterskill Falls; it was an amazing day. If you happen to be visiting or live nearby, I would highly recommend you wrap up warm and take the trip as well.
Joining with #sharealllinkup at Not dressed as lamb.