Point Au Roche State Park
|Description: For a couple of weeks in the spring and fall, birders from near and far flock here
to see thousands of migrating snow geese. Point Au Roche, with several peninsulas,
bays and nearby cornfields, is a significant stopover on the Atlantic flyway
for migratory waterfowl. Its landscape is mostly undeveloped, with an interesting
mix of upland forests, scrub, fields and near-shore marshes on Lake Champlain.
This variable landscape provides habitat for a diversity of wildlife. In addition,
Point Au Roche’s alluvial lake plain soils and shoreline shale outcrops provide
unique microhabitats for rare plants.|
Wildlife to Watch: Unlike snow geese that stop only in migration, resident Canada geese nest
here. Other waterfowl regularly seen are mallards, black ducks, wood ducks,
blue-winged teal and mergansers. Killdeer search for worms and insects in
plowed fields, while herring gulls are seen gliding about near the water, sitting
quietly on the beach or squabbling over scraps of food. Egrets and herons
hunt for small fish and invertebrates along marsh edges. Abundant fish, frogs
and small mammals attract osprey and other hawk species that hunt during
the day, while at dusk, you may catch sight of or hear screech, barred or great
horned owls as they begin their nocturnal search for food.
Skittish white-tailed deer are the most frequently seen large mammal at Point
Au Roche, emerging from the woods to feed in fields and wetlands at dawn
and dusk. Wary red and gray foxes also appear at these times. Beavers, muskrats
and the occasional otter may be observed in their natural wetland habitats. Many of these wild animals have become somewhat used to the presence of
people at Point Au Roche, making it easier to watch and enjoy them.
Special Tips: This site has some accessible features, including picnicking and
518-563-0369, 19 Camp Red Cloud Road, Plattsburgh, NY 12901,
Other Activities: The large day-use area has a protected sandy beach and picnic facilities.
Boating and fishing are popular activities, and the park offers 60
designated mooring sites in Deep Bay. In winter, the park provides
excellent access points for ice fishing. The park is open year-round,
and staff offer a variety of public programs. A vehicle-use fee is
charged for access to the beach from June through Labor Day.
Ownership: NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation
Size: 825 acres
Closest Town: Plattsburg
Best Seasons for Wildlife Viewing: