|Main entrance at the end of Nunda Boulevard, 14610, just east of the Cobb's Hill Reservoir
Washington Grove is a 27-acre park in the Cobbs Hill Neighborhood that contains a rare example of an ancient oak-hickory forest. In 1932, the City of Rochester and School District dedicated the Grove as a unique setting where children could learn about nature and civic responsibility.
In addition to the old oaks, some of which are about 200 years old, the Grove also contains rare examples of kame and kettle glacial topography that were once predominant in the Pinnacle Range.
The Grove is popular destination for many who desire to walk or ski among the giant trees. At the same time, it is an environmentally-sensitive area that is faced with a range of issues like invasive species, erosion, oak regeneration, as well as problems from improper uses, such as dogs off-leash, vandalism and litter. Please do not bike on the Washington Grove trails. You are permitted to walk your bicycle but riding it causes damage to the park's special glacial topography. Dogs are welcome on a leash.
Park at the dead end of Nunda Blvd. and within minutes you will find yourself in a quiet wooded haven.
The Water Towers can be reached via this park, and a wonderful ridge overlooks School Number 1 on Hillside Avenue and the Tay House Lodge. Trails pass behind the large houses on the north side of Highland Avenue, giving a glimpse of some amazing properties in Rochester.
The wooded area referred to as Washington Grove is no more than 27 acres in area. This is excluding the lawn area surrounding the water tanks and including the hardwood "forest." The area of Cobb's Hill Park as a whole is in the order of 100 acres. (Area measurements were performed with Google Earth.)
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2009-08-25 23:55:16 I recently went to the park after not having been there in about 4 months. I was shocked and incredibly dismayed to see that the trails were completely torn apart and blocked off with piles of deadwood... it looked horrible. It looked like vandalism. My wife and I had brought our Labrador there on a leash, and we were verbally accosted at the Nunda entrance by an overzealous member of the Sierra Club who, amidst numerous threats to call the police if he saw our dog off his leash, told us that the entire park was to be revamped by the Club- with the consent of the City of Rochester.
Many of the main trails have been blocked off completely by stacked tree trunks in an effort to "curb erosion." The man claimed that the majority of the erosion and widened trails has been caused by dogs. I find that statement to be dangerously narrow-minded and single-sided. It is obvious that the Sierra Club is trying to close off the park to bikes by blocking the trails, and trying to strongarm local dog owners by sending their eco-creeps into the park to bother us. The Sierra Club member followed my wife and I (he stalked us from afar), and she has been confronted and followed similarly while on her own with the dog... something that has prompted her to abandon going to the park unless I'm there too.
I think the City agreed to let a questionable bunch of people (the Sierra Club) overtake our TAXPAYER FUNDED PARK. I've been a lifetime resident of Rochester and have been going to Washington Grove Park since I was a kid, and it's sad to see that the park is being ruined for the people who enjoy it with their dogs (and in general)- under the guise of "environmental concern."
2009-11-27 15:09:07 Aside from the conservation controversy circulating around Washington Grove, the City of Rochester Animal Control officers have been patrolling this park a lot more frequently, handing out tickets for off-leash dogs. Seems to me that the worst behaved dogs aren't the ones getting the tickets, unfortunately. Anyway, this is a wonderful park that is heavily traveled by people and dogs and feels reasonably safe. I don't think the dogs are the cause behind erosion in this park; I think mountain bikers are. —KatieSchmitz
2011-10-22 20:45:17 I walk my dog 2-3 times a week through Washington Grove, up and around the reservoir, and all surrounding areas. I grew up here and know the area very well. I do keep my dog leashed, it's the law! Well, this year my dog has been attacked 6 times, that's right SIX different times by the same UNLEASHED dog, 3 times he was held to the ground by the neck in the mouth of the other dog until I could free him of this dog. Two times I had my cell phone, so I called 911, the first time dog controll took a report, but I didn't know where the woman and the three dogs (greyhounds) went? The second time dog controll didn't take a report, but said it would be better if I file a report with his boss, and I will. When calling 911 the 2nd time 10/21/11 about 6pm I gave the officer a discription of the vehicle and tag # that they left in. Dog controll also told me of many reports of this person living in Brighton NY with 3 greyhounds, the one that is NOT leashed goes by the name Shamis, the largest of the 3, a dark greyish black in color. After one of these encounters, on my way home I saw my neighbors walking there dog, told them of my horrible event, and they said the same dog went to attack there dog also. I love dogs, it's the ignorant owners that I have a problem with. If this happens again, I somehow will photo these dogs and the OWNER and will be given to all officials of the city of Rochester and put in all public areas in the city until something is done. We all have the right to this public area, you (this woman who will not leash all 3 dogs) will not stop me from walking my dog through the grove. Yes, I fear for my dogs safety, so I hope something is done to convince you to leash your dogs when out in public, or Shamis may have to go, It's not his fault that his owner can't see that there is a problem, a legal problem! —philherzog
2013-04-28 17:51:00 People, seriously, do not bike on the trails. I walked my bike on the trails today today and was thanked for doing so by three different people. If you want to bike that badly, there is a very beautiful neighborhood surrounding the park that offers you ample opportunity. Actually, by doing both biking and walking you are able to exercise different muscles and that's very good for you. Please respect nature. —EileenF