Hours and Services of Reinstein Woods
Self-guided Interpretive Trails
The interpretive trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset.
Visitors are requested to sign in and out at the main trailhead kiosk and obey the posted rules. Interpretive pamphlets corresponding to the Lily Pond Loop, Footprint Trail, and Beech Tree Trail are available at each trailhead kiosk or inside the Environmental Education Center. Interpretive signs are found along the State Symbols Trail and History Trail. Benches are available on each trail.
Environmental Education Center
Monday through Friday 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Saturday 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Closed Sundays and state holidays.
To learn more about the environmentally-friendly features of the Environmental Education Center, see the "Green" Environmental Education Center (PDF) (252 kB) brochure.
Guided nature walks for the general public are conducted on Saturday at 10:00 AM. These tours last about 90 minutes. No registration is required, and there is no fee. Nature walks are held rain, snow, or shine, so please dress appropriately for the weather.
Seasonal nature programs are offered each month. Check the Current and Upcoming Programs for program schedules and more information. Advance registration is required for all programs, and some programs may have a fee for materials.
Snowshoe and Cross-country Ski Rental
During the Education Center business hours and some Sundays, DEC partners with Friends of Reinstein Woods to offer snowshoe and cross-country ski rentals for use on Reinstein Woods' trails. We have a large selection of snowshoes (fitting small children to large adults). We have a decent selection of adult cross-country skis and a limited number of skis for youth. Rentals are made on a first-come, first-serve basis. The cost is $5 per pair, $2 for Friends of Reinstein Woods members. You can also rent an infant/toddler sled for $5.
A minimum of 6" of snow on the ground is required in order to use the snowshoes and skis, and we reserve the right to refuse rentals during inappropriate or dangerous trail conditions. One renter from each party must be at least 16 years old and leave their driver's license or non-driver photo ID at the reception desk. Friends of Reinstein members must show their membership card to receive the discount.
For more details about this program, call (716) 683-5959 or visit Friends of Reinstein Woods (leaves DEC's website).
Guided nature walks for schools, scouting groups, and other organizations are available by appointment (minimum of 10 people). Please call to schedule group tours at least three weeks in advance of the desired date.
Reinstein Woods is an ideal outdoor classroom for students of all ages, offering the opportunity for hands-on learning in a variety of habitats. DEC offers age-appropriate lessons for school groups on topics such as pond life and animal signs to help students learn how to observe and appreciate nature. For more information, see the School Programs Brochure (PDF) (255 kB).
Reinstein Woods offers a variety of 3-hour and 6-hour workshops designed to help educators incorporate environmental education into their existing curriculum. These workshops also can be done at an individual school upon request. See the Upcoming Educator Workshops schedule for workshops at Reinstein Woods and other locations. For more information about educator workshops, contact Reinstein Woods at 716-683-5959.
With the help of local environmental organizations, Reinstein Woods staff, and volunteers, students in grades 6-12 collect scientific data along the Buffalo River and its major tributaries, creating a "snapshot" of the watershed at one point in time. Students measure water currents, test water chemistry and investigate aquatic life. There is no charge to participate, and teachers receive training, supplies and the opportunity to apply for a free bus to transport students to the study site. The data students collect are posted on the Day in the Life of the Buffalo River webpage so that classes can compare their results with that of other sites. The event happens every October. For more information and an application, contact Reinstein Woods at 716-683-5959, extension 205.
Summer Teacher Institute
Reinstein Woods invites educators to participate in our annual Summer Teacher Institute. Learn how to connect your classroom to the outdoors with hands-on, nature themed activities. This two-day program provides 12 hours of instruction for which in-service or continuing education credit may be available. See the Annual Teacher Institute and Academies page for more information.
You can sign up to receive an e-mail about the upcoming season's public programs and notices about special events at Reinstein Woods. To receive updates Subscribe to GovDelivery, enter the requested information and check the box next to "Reinstein Woods EEC" on the topics page.
Service project opportunities are available for schools, scouts, other organizations, and individuals. Projects support the goals and objectives of the Unit Management Plan, and have included invasive plant species removal and construction of deer exclosures to promote forest regeneration. For more information about service projects, contact Reinstein Woods at 716-683-5959.
DEC is always looking for volunteers to help with leading tours and other activities such as trail maintenance and public outreach. It is a great way to meet new people while helping to protect and promote the Reinstein Woods. For more information, see the Volunteer Program.
Reinstein Woods offers paid naturalist training internships to persons seeking professional experience in environmental education. For more information and an application, visit the Naturalist Intern Program web page. Educational credit for internships can be arranged with colleges that offer such credit.
Most of the trails at Reinstein Woods are compacted gravel/dirt roads; a few trails are covered with wood chips. Persons in wheelchairs and strollers frequently participate in tours. We also feature an accessible boardwalk leading to an overlook of the Lily Pond. A complete site assessment is available on the New York State Inclusive Recreation Resource Center's online database.
Help Us Protect the Center's Resources
Visitors to DEC's environmental education centers should become familiar with the regulations governing the use of the centers as found in the New York State Register and Official Compilation of Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York (NYCRR). Go to DEC's Use of Environmental Education Centers page to see the regulations concerning centers; visit the Regulations and Enforcement page for other regulations regarding the use of state land.
Please remember that the following are prohibited:
- Bikes, skateboards, and motorized vehicles
- Taking or releasing plants or animals
- Hunting, trapping, and fishing
- Pets and horses
- Alcoholic beverages and glass containers
- Camping and campfires
Please stay on designated trails to protect the environment for all visitors.
Please dispose of trash and recyclables in appropriate containers.
For more information on any of these services, call (716) 683-5959.