8 Great Hikes in the Hudson Valley

Danielle Call

One of the easiest ways to get out and enjoy nature is with a great hike! This list consists of some of my favorite trails in the lower Hudson Valley. From Anthony's Nose and Camp Smith to the Lemon Squeezer, there's something on this list for all levels. Plus, all of these hikes are within two hours from New York City. Don't have a car? No worries, some of these can even be accessed using Metro North!

  • Breakneck Point in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      This trail gets extremely busy on the weekend, but if you can do it early or go on a weekday I highly recommend it. The trailhead is just past the tunnel under the mountain on the river side. It begins with a pretty vertical rock scramble that can be challenging but is super fun. We did bring our pup on this one and he had a great time, but we went a little longer than we should have and he did not like the rock scramble descent. Overall it was a great hike and the summit views are beautiful!

  • Labyrinth Trailhead in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      I have not yet done this hike, but it has been on my list for quite a while. There are many options in the Mohonk Preserve to add onto your hike and make it a little longer, but the Labyrinth Trailhead is a good place to start. Make your way up towards the Skytop Tower (that you can climb for an even better view) and find yourself inching through a true lemon squeezer to get to the top! It's recommended to not bring dogs on this hike (unless they can climb ladders) which is probably why we haven't gotten to it yet.

  • Reeves Meadow Information Center in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      From here you can take a number of different trails, but I really enjoyed the Reeves Brook Loop Trail. It is a 4 mile loop that takes you through some smaller mountains and valleys and has a great view of the park. My favorite part (and my dog's) was a steep rock climb section towards the middle of the hike. It looks pretty intimidating when you get up to it, but take your time and have fun with it!

  • Elk Pen Parking Lot at Harriman State Park in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      Part of Harriman State Park, from this trailhead you can explore a number of different paths. You will start on a small portion of the Appalachian Trail that leads to Island Pond, a great spot to relax and enjoy the view. You can also try a smaller "Lemon Squeezer" portion of the trail that goes through two very large rock formations. If you're really adventurous you can climb through the cave in the rocks, but I heard it was pretty cold and damp!

  • Mount Beacon Fire Tower in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      Part of the Hudson Highlands State Park, there are miles and miles of trails here. I love Mount Beacon because it features some archaeological remains of an old casino, some hollowed out old car bodies that ended up there, and the old winch and rails that used to transport people and cars up the hill. Beware it does start out steep with a lot of stairs, but the views are worth it. If you make your way to the fire tower I recommend you making the climb to the top, just make sure its not a windy day like when I was there!

  • Camp Smith Trail in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      If you are looking for something a bit more challenging I recommend the Camp Smith Trail. It will lead you up to the summit of Anthony's Nose, but it will add about 4 miles of hiking to your day. This trail starts at the old Bear Mountain Toll House and goes up the ridge above the road and looks out on the river. There are parts of the trail that can get a little close to the edge so be sure to keep your pup on the leash!

  • Anthony's Nose II - Trail Head in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      If you're looking for a good first hike of the season to get yourself back into the swing of things, or an introductory hike in the Hudson Valley area, Anthony's Nose is a perfect option. It is a pretty well trafficked out and back trail with some small streams and a little bit of fun (and easy) rock scrambling. The summit looks out over the Bear Mountain Bridge and the Hudson River. Be sure to get there early because the parking area is SMALL!

  • Bull Hill Trail in New York, United States

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    • mustangdmv

      I really love this trail! The beginning is pretty steep but it gets a little more relaxed at the top of the ridge. There is a longer 5.5 mile Bull Hill full loop that you can do or you can take the short loop that is only about 4 miles. Either way there are great views and places to stop for lunch. There is a small stream a little past the descent that my dog loves to splash in and the end of the trail features the old Cornish Estate mansion that was destroyed by a fire in the 1950's. The bones of the mansion still stand and you can explore that and some of the outlying "buildings" that were once there.

  • Breakneck Point

    This trail gets extremely busy on the weekend, but if you can do it early or go on a weekday I highly recommend it. The trailhead is just past the tunnel under the mountain on the river side. It begins with a pretty vertical rock scramble that can be challenging but is super fun. We did bring our pup on this one and he had a great time, but we went a little longer than we should have and he did not like the rock scramble descent. Overall it was a great hike and the summit views are beautiful!

    December 10, 2020
  • Labyrinth Trailhead

    I have not yet done this hike, but it has been on my list for quite a while. There are many options in the Mohonk Preserve to add onto your hike and make it a little longer, but the Labyrinth Trailhead is a good place to start. Make your way up towards the Skytop Tower (that you can climb for an even better view) and find yourself inching through a true lemon squeezer to get to the top! It's recommended to not bring dogs on this hike (unless they can climb ladders) which is probably why we haven't gotten to it yet.

    December 10, 2020
  • Reeves Meadow Information Center

    From here you can take a number of different trails, but I really enjoyed the Reeves Brook Loop Trail. It is a 4 mile loop that takes you through some smaller mountains and valleys and has a great view of the park. My favorite part (and my dog's) was a steep rock climb section towards the middle of the hike. It looks pretty intimidating when you get up to it, but take your time and have fun with it!

    December 10, 2020
  • Elk Pen Parking Lot at Harriman State Park

    Part of Harriman State Park, from this trailhead you can explore a number of different paths. You will start on a small portion of the Appalachian Trail that leads to Island Pond, a great spot to relax and enjoy the view. You can also try a smaller "Lemon Squeezer" portion of the trail that goes through two very large rock formations. If you're really adventurous you can climb through the cave in the rocks, but I heard it was pretty cold and damp!

    December 10, 2020
  • Mount Beacon Fire Tower

    Part of the Hudson Highlands State Park, there are miles and miles of trails here. I love Mount Beacon because it features some archaeological remains of an old casino, some hollowed out old car bodies that ended up there, and the old winch and rails that used to transport people and cars up the hill. Beware it does start out steep with a lot of stairs, but the views are worth it. If you make your way to the fire tower I recommend you making the climb to the top, just make sure its not a windy day like when I was there!

    December 10, 2020
  • Camp Smith Trail

    If you are looking for something a bit more challenging I recommend the Camp Smith Trail. It will lead you up to the summit of Anthony's Nose, but it will add about 4 miles of hiking to your day. This trail starts at the old Bear Mountain Toll House and goes up the ridge above the road and looks out on the river. There are parts of the trail that can get a little close to the edge so be sure to keep your pup on the leash!

    December 10, 2020
  • Anthony's Nose II - Trail Head

    If you're looking for a good first hike of the season to get yourself back into the swing of things, or an introductory hike in the Hudson Valley area, Anthony's Nose is a perfect option. It is a pretty well trafficked out and back trail with some small streams and a little bit of fun (and easy) rock scrambling. The summit looks out over the Bear Mountain Bridge and the Hudson River. Be sure to get there early because the parking area is SMALL!

    December 10, 2020
  • Bull Hill Trail

    I really love this trail! The beginning is pretty steep but it gets a little more relaxed at the top of the ridge. There is a longer 5.5 mile Bull Hill full loop that you can do or you can take the short loop that is only about 4 miles. Either way there are great views and places to stop for lunch. There is a small stream a little past the descent that my dog loves to splash in and the end of the trail features the old Cornish Estate mansion that was destroyed by a fire in the 1950's. The bones of the mansion still stand and you can explore that and some of the outlying "buildings" that were once there.

    December 10, 2020