Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
442.00 ft (134.72 m)
Trail type
4.40 mi (7.08 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The trails leading from Heart Lake take hikers to hundreds of locations in the High Peaks Wilderness of the Adirondack Mountains, including mountain summits, rivers and waterfalls. Rocky Falls is one such location found on Indian Pass Brook along the Indian Pass Trail.

This 8-foot waterfall not only makes for a great resting spot, but it is a perfect swimming hole for hikers to cool off in. Two fairly-large and deep pools have formed at the base of the falls. One pool is directly in front of the falls, while the other is in a calm section just before the Brook continues its journey to join with the East Branch Ausable River.

The 2.4-mile, red-blazed trail to the falls begins at the Heart Lake parking area and follows the trail past the junction to Mount Jo and the Heart Lake Loop. Along the way hikers with come across many species of trees, including the fragrant balsam fir, whose aroma fills the air in one particular section near the falls.

The trail leads steadily along with few inclines; however, there are a handful of spots that may require hikers to rock-hop across a stream.

Adirondack pioneer Henry Van Hoevenberg has a rich history in the Heart Lake Region. The Indian Pass Trail, along which Rocky Falls lies, was used by Henry Van Hoevenberg in 1903 to escape a fire that had ravaged the area; including the original Adirondak Loj, which he constructed. This same trail also passes Mount Jo (2,876 feet), which Van Hoevenberg named after his fiancée, Josephine Schofield, and Heart Lake, which he named due to its shape.

Heart Lake and the Adirondak Loj have become immensely popular destinations in the Heart Lake Region due to the access offered to the High Peaks Wilderness from the extensive trail system that begins there. Although the lot is large, it is best to arrive at the Heart lake parking area as early as possible to ensure a parking spot during summer.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

General Day Use Fee


Swimming. Camping, Solitude. Deep swimming holes.



Trailhead Elevation

2,067.00 ft (630.02 m)


Backcountry camping
Bird watching
Big vistas
Old-growth forest



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