We all feel like the big outdoors a little more than usual lately. Hiking has become the latest big craze, meaning we are all looking for new routes to explore and mountains to conquer!
If you are considering hiking Mohonk in the Hudson Valley of New York, you have come to the right place.
There are 85 miles of winding hiking trails to experience, ranging in difficulty from beginner to advanced.
How to get to Mohonk Preserve
Start by driving up NY through exit 18 – Ny Paltz, stop for breakfast in this picturesque university town, pack a lunch for lunch and walk up to Mohonk Preserve.
You can not miss it … aims at the tower on top of the alabaster cliffs of the limestone.
The conservation is world famous Mecca for mountaineers.
When driving up the winding Route 55, keep an eye on the road. It is hard to resist the temptation to see the colorful climbers on their uncertain routes. Park by West Trps Trailhead Lot, our place of departure for Undercliff Carriage Road where our hike begins.
While hiking Mohonk, you will be up close and personal with the rock rats – Men, women and children heavily weighed down with a variety of packages, clinking climbing gear strped to all parts of their body and resembling more walking hardware stores than outdoor men. Spools of rope swung bandolier-style across both shoulders complete the uniform.
However, we are here to hike. When you march on under Undercliff, you will soon lose your sight and be out of the hearing for shouting … “On belay!”, “Climbing!”, “I can not go higher” (afraid) “Bring your left foot up”.
Two miles from your start you come to an intersection – The left leads you to the heavily traveled Overcliff Road.
Right leads you to … somewhere.
Stay straight, which leads you through cool valley by Laurel Ledge a ravine that immerses you in a green carpet … mountain laurel and rhododendron.
The cool humid air embraces and refreshes you. After some smaller cliffs on your left, you come to the less traveled road – it Old Minnewaska Trail. A gradual increase brings you to a middle level of the ridge. Invisible above, The Overcliff Road is parallel to your hike.
The air is certainly warmer when the heat radiates from the rock slabs and the scent of pine trees hovers in the wind, just like the dragon breath. Two miles later you reach Split Rock, a split limestone channeling —-creek—-. It was once used as a lock for a sawmill.
Turn left Red path for a short but steeper ascent uphill to your starting point in the car park.
This 5 km hike is just one of the 70 miles of transport routes and trails available at the reserve.
Do not forget to bring your camera when you hike Mohonk!
About Mohonk Preserve
Open 365 days a year, sunrise to sunset. Hiking is allowed in daylight from kl. 07.00 to dusk.
Mohonk hiking trails:
ril – november
$ 29 – pr. Adult (aged 13+)
$ 24 – pr. Children (4-12 years)
At this stage, all hikers MUST buy their hiking map online. Your hiking map includes access to the hiking trails at the Mohonk Mountain House property.
On arrival you will be screened for your temperature. Throughout the day, hikers are required to wear masks while hiking Mohonk, and hikers must physically distance themselves at least 6 feet from other hikers.
Getting to the trail:
Take the New Paltz exit 18 off the NYS Thruway. Go 7 miles west (through New Paltz) on Route 299 to the end: turn right on Route 44-55.
You can see Mohonk hiking trail m here.
To prepare you for your hike, we recommend that you bring a packed meal, bottled water, rain gear and a headlight. You can also read our post on the best hiking trails.