Looking for easy hike

Chat about the Catskill Mountains in general.

Looking for easy hike

New postby Jake » Mon Mar 03, 2014 6:32 pm

I am from Long Island where the highest elevation is 400 ft ( and that is just one location) .

I am looking to make a few day trips during the Spring and Summer and I am very interested in finding some easy hikes no more than 3-4 miles round trip that show waterfalls and some outstanding views . Any suggestion would be greatly appreciated .

Thanks
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby kennykb » Tue Mar 04, 2014 6:44 pm

All of the following come to mind:

  • Kaaterskill Falls from Route 23A. About 0.7 mile of trail to the base of the falls. Then drive around to Laurel House Road and hike in to the top of the falls.
  • The Escarpment, starting from the Catskill Mountain House site at North-South Lake and heading in either direction for as long as you like, then turning around. Spectacular views to be had at intervals all along there.
  • The Overlook, Tremper Mountain, or Red Hill fire towers.
  • Huckleberry Point from Platte Clove.
  • Hunter Mountain from the ski lifts.
  • Check out the little waterfalls along Peekamoose Road, and climb up to Reconnoiter Rock for the view. (Peekamoose summit is out of your distance range.)
  • I'm not sure without pulling out my mileage tables (which I don't have where I'm sitting) whether Giant Ledge from County Road 47 is within your distance specification or not.
  • Build up your trail legs to a 6-mile round trip (3 up, 3 back) and do Windham High Peak. It's 6 miles, but a pretty easy trail by Catskill standards, and has great views.
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby mtnclimber » Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:35 am

You can also hike around North-South lake. There are lots of trails there. You can control how long you want to hike to last.
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby SNEAKers » Mon Mar 10, 2014 12:35 pm

The north south lake region has been mentioned already because it's great. Specifically, you might consider hiking from any of the campground parking lots to Ashley Falls, Ledge Falls and then to Bear's den and the ledges along the escarpment. Not strenuous, has some nice waterfalls and incredible views of the Hudson!
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby kennykb » Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:54 pm

North-South Lake... all three of us suggested that one! (SNEAKers suggested clockwise and I suggested counter-clockwise, that's the only real difference in the hikes.) It only gets strenuous if you push on past Badman Cave. The last quarter mile up to North Point is pretty steep.

Although - what do you consider to be "easy", "moderate", "strenuous?" I'm remembering from last summer a couple of hikers from New Jersey being quite shocked at what Catskill hikers consider "easy." He was doing WHP from Route 23 and was astonished that the guidebook called that route "easy." Have we done hikes in common? If you're a Long Island hiker, you've probably done some trails in Harriman. Would you consider the ascent up from Island Pond up to the top of Island Pond Mountain through the Lemon Squeezer "easy," "moderate," or "difficult?" What about West Mountain from Anthony Wayne? Bear Mountain by any other route than the steps? (Or name something there and tell me what you thought. I've probably done it. I've hiked most of the Harriman trails at one time or another. I used to be a Long Islander myself.)

By the way, if you haven't done West Mountain in Harriman, it meets your specs of a short round trip and a nice view. But I'm not sure that it would fall under your definition of 'easy.' Almost Perpendicular is another nice overlook, and that one *is* fairly easy. My daughter managed it at about 8. There was one scramble where she needed a boost. Or the Jackie Jones fire tower in Harriman is worth a visit. It's got good views of both Lake Welch and the Hudson. It's at worst 'moderate' by my standards.
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby SNEAKers » Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:58 pm

Yep, good stuff kennykb! I like to save the best for last, which is the only reasoning behind the direction I suggested. Falls: good, Bear's Den: great, ledges towards the end of the hike: spectacular!

You can't go wrong with any of the suggestions thus far!
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby trailblazer » Sat Jun 07, 2014 4:22 pm

If you're still interested in a easy yet nice hike, go to Alder Lake in Turnwood, Alder Lake is in the Balsam Lake Mountain Wild Forest.
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Re: Looking for easy hike

New postby mulloo » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:59 am

Rockefeller State Park has some very wonderful easy trails. You need to pay for parking, but the park is absolutely beautiful.
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