I am in Maple Shade, New Jersey and would like to visit Niagara Falls, NY (US side) by this month, after which it will get very cold and I would wait till the summer next year.

Will the fall have enormous amounts of water now, like it has during the summers? We are planning to take the Amtrak train to go there as it is 8+ hours drive from here.

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  • If you don't know, how could we possibly? What, exactly, are you looking for?
    – CGCampbell
    Sep 17 '15 at 3:25
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    I don't see why this question should be put on hold. Many major waterfalls in many parts of the world are highly seasonal in their flow rate; for example, Victoria Falls looks very different in the rainy season versus the dry season.. The OP simply wants to know whether Niagara Falls has similar seasonal behavior, and if so what the best time of year is. Sep 17 '15 at 13:35

My parents just visited Niagara Falls last week (12, 13 and 14 September) from New York, they too visited only the US side. And, one weekend before my parents, my colleague visited their with his family (after his reviews I planned tour for my parents).

So, as told by all of them and after seeing the pictures they have taken, I can assure you that the view at this time is same as seen over google pictures. Level of water and crowd visiting Niagara falls is good enough to make this tour a cherish-able tour. Although my parents has taken 3 days and 2 nights tour (including Washington DC, Philadelphia, Watkins Glen Tour) but they were very much impressed and happy with the Niagara Falls place. If you visit the same by anytime end of October it will be good time for visiting that place.

  • I was there October 2014, Canadian side. I have traveled in the area a few times, twice in October. When the folliage turns red, the views are even better than usual, so do not hessitate to go in October.
    – Willeke
    Sep 17 '15 at 17:30
  • Great. So I guess instead of going in September, we can plan to go around during October so that we can view both the fall (Niagara and the Nature).
    – Soumya
    Sep 17 '15 at 20:52

The flow over the falls is influenced by the hydroelectric power plants in the region. However, by international treaty, the flow is maintained at a certain minimum amount:

The 1950 Niagara Treaty established minimum flows over Niagara Falls for scenic purposes. Note that Niagara Falls refers to the sum of the flow over the American and Horseshoe Falls. The Treaty states that the flow over Niagara Falls should not be less than 2832 m3/s (100,000 ft3/s) each day between the hours of 8 a.m., E.S.T., and 10 p.m., E.S.T., during the period of each year beginning April 1 and ending September 15, inclusive; and each day between the hours of 8 a.m., E.S.T., and 8 p.m., E.S.T., during the period of each year beginning September 16 and ending October 31, inclusive. Falls flow should not be less than 1416 m3/s (50,000 ft3/s) at any other time.

So as long as you go by the end of October, and there isn't a drought on in the Midwest, then you should get the full effect. The flow is generally higher when Lake Erie levels are higher, and right now water levels in Lake Erie are about 0.4 m above their seasonal average. (Note that the historical range of data only spans about ±0.75 m.) There's no guarantee that the lake levels will be higher next summer than they are right now, so I wouldn't take the amount of water going over the falls as your determining factor.

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