20+ of the Best Places for Hiking in the Hudson Valley

If you love the outdoors, then hiking in the Hudson Valley is for you!

But which is the best hike in the Hudson Valley? That’s a question that’s very personal. And many factors are involved in order to rank the BEST.

What’s BEST for you, may not be the BEST for someone else.


Although some of these locations are open to the public, please follow these guidelines:
Please be safe.
Practice social distancing, wear a mask, wash hands thoroughly and follow all mandates and recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control (cdc.gov) and NY State and local Governments.

Need help finding places for hiking in the Hudson Valley? This article is filled with popular places for hiking in this beautiful region.

This page contains affiliate links. Affiliate links mean that I get a small commission to help run this blog with each purchase you make on this page. This comes at no extra cost to you. Read my disclosure for more information.

Tips for Hiking in the Hudson Valley

  • Do research before heading out on the trails.
  • Be honest about your hiking experience. Some hiking trails are for seasoned hikers and not for newbies.
  • Be prepared with the correct gear (see below)
  • Check the weather on a reputable site or App (see below)
  • Check your location the day of your visit. Some are very popular and close when at capacity.

Please Be Considerate:

Because of the recent increase in visitation to many hiking trails:

  • Please take out what you bring in, meaning garbage, etc.
  • Be mindful of other hikers
  • Do not tamper or collect plants, disturb the animals, etc.
  • Keep your pet on a leash.

The hiking community wants to these trails to remain open, clean and safe for enjoyment now and for years to come.

These are the incredible views you can find while hiking in the Hudson Valley.
Photo of the Hudson River courtesy of T. Rosado Evangelista

Popular Hiking in the Hudson Valley – By County

Map of Hiking in the Hudson Valley

Albany County, NY Places

Albany Pine Bush

A trip to Albany Pine Bush in Albany is a trip you will not soon forget. With approximately 18 miles of trails and an impressive 3,350 acres of land, there is something for every type of hiker. The trails vary from sandy trails that are wide and invite exploration while some other areas are narrow, grassy and within woodland areas.

Start your visit at Albany Pine Bush at the Discovery Center.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.albanypinebush.org

Indian Ladder Trail

Located just outside Albany in Voorheesville, John Boyd Thacher State Park is the home to Indian Ladder Trail.

The trail passes two waterfalls, an underground stream and caves. The trail is ‘One Way’ and the entrance will be at La Grange and the exit will be at the Visitors Center.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: parks.ny.gov/parks/128/details.aspx

Columbia County, NY

Columbia Land Conservancy’s Conservation Areas

Conserving land throughout Columbia County is the mission of the Columbia Land Conservancy. With ongoing projects in the area, the list of conservation areas is always changing.

Some areas include:

  • Borden’s Pond in Ghent, NY
  • Drowned Lands, Ancram, NY
  • Greenport, Greenport, NY
  • Hand Hollow, East Chatham, NY
  • Harris, Austerlitz, NY
  • High Falls, Philmont, NY
  • Ooms, Chatham, NY
  • Overmountain, Ancram, NY
  • Schor, Canaan, NY
  • Siegel-Kline Kill, Ghent, NY

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: clctrust.org

Hiking in the Hudson Valley is a year-round activity and sport. A view of Mount Beacon from Newburgh, NY

Dutchess County, NY

Mount Beacon

Mount Beacon is the highest peak of the Hudson Highlands. Located south of the City of Beacon, this is a popular area for hiking in the Hudson Valley.

Easily seen from across the Hudson River in Newburgh, this steep climb offers amazing views of the valley and the river below. The northern peak has several radio antennas and the southern peak houses a fire lookout tower.

Once home to the Mount Beacon Incline Railway, the summit also once housed a restaurant, casino and hotel. Partial structures still remain.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.scenichudson.org/explore-the-valley/scenic-hudson-parks/mount-beacon-park/

Dover Stone Church

Would you believe it if I told you that you can find a beautiful rock formation with a waterfall in a cave in Dutchess County? Well, you can! Dover Stone Church in Dover Plains, NY is a wonderful place to hike and spend some time exploring the ‘church’ cave and surrounding area.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.doverny.us/dover-stone-church-preserve

Stissing Fire Tower

Located in Pine Plains, the hike to Stissing Fire Tower on Stissing Mountain is steep but worth it. The amazing views from the summit.

The Fire Tower itself is not for those scared of heights, but the views from the top are outstanding. Standing at 90-feet, the hike may take up to an hour to reach the tower.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: stissingfiretower.org

A view of the Hudson River is always the reward for Hiking in the Hudson Valley.
Photo courtesy of TRE
Resting on the summit is the best part of hiking in the Hudson Valley.
Photo courtesy of TRE

Greene County, NY

Kaaterskill Clove Lookout

The access to the trailhead can be found on Route 23A in Palenville, NY. The lookout is a excellent place to take in the amazing views of the Lower Kaaterskill Clove and the Hudson Valley.

The entire hike is approximately 1.8 miles round trip and is well worth it.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.greatnortherncatskills.com/outdoors/kaaterskill-clove-lookout

North-South Lake State Park Campground

Known at the biggest and most popular state campground, North-South Lake State Park Campground should be added to everyone’s list of must-see places to hike.

In addition to hiking, you can enjoy your time camping, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, row boating and swimming.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free day use | $22 per night
WEBSITE: www.greatnortherncatskills.com/attractions/north-south-lake

At the Summit of Bannerman Island lies a post with a wonderful message
Summit on Bannerman Island

Orange County, NY

Sterling Forest State Park

This pristine natural state park is an amazing 21,000+ acres. The Lautenberg Visitors Center is open daily from 8am – 4:30pm.

There are several popular trails at perfect for hiking in the Hudson Valley: 8-mile Sterling Ridge Trail, 3-mile Allis Trail, 4-mile Indian Hill Loop, 7 miles of the Appalachian Trial and 10 miles of the Highlands Trail.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: parks.ny.gov/parks/74/

Storm King State Park

Spanning almost 2,000 acres, Storm King State Park is a favorite of many. Located at the Southeast art of Cornwall, it is located next to the Hudson River.

The main feature being Storm King Mountain, the majority of the land is undeveloped and offers limited parking and some hiking trails.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: parks.ny.gov/parks/stormking/maps.aspx

View of Mount Beacon from Washington Headquarters in Newburgh, NY
View of Mount Beacon from the Washington Headquarters in Newburgh, NY

Putnam County, NY

Manitou Point Preserve

Exploring Putnam County’s Eastern border along the Hudson River could not be easier than than with this hike. Hiking in the Hudson Valley cannot get easier and more rewarding than this hike.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.nynjtc.org/park/manitou-point-nature-preserve

Mount Taurus

Just North of Cold Spring, is a location called Bull Hill or Mount Taurus. Part of the Hudson Highlands, this location offers a challenging trail that ends with a spectacular view of the Hudson River.

As you begin this hike, you will walk along the site of the quarry operated from 1931 to 1967 by Hudson River Stone Corporation. Remnants of rusted pipes and cables can still be seen.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.nynjtc.org/hike/east-hudson-highlands#dialog-hike-description

Putnam Trailway

Perfect for biking and walking/jogging/running, the Putnam Trailway is paved and follows the “Old” NY and Putnam Railroad line.

Starting at the Putnam County Line it extends 12 miles to Carmel.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.putnamcountyny.com/parks-recreation/bike-path

View of the Hudson River from Bear Mountain Bridge

Rensselaer County, NY

Dickinson Hill Fire Tower

With majestic views of the Adirondack Mountains, Green Mountains of Vermont and the Taconic Range and the Helderberg Mountains, this Fire tower is a must-see if your a nature junkie. Built in 1924 to monitor forest fires, this tower has been updated in the several years in order to be enjoyed by people visiting Grafton Lakes State Park.

The cabin on the tower offers spectacular 360 degree views of the surrounding area.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.cnyhiking.com/DickinsonHillFireTower.htm

Mud Pond Preserve

This serene and relatively short hiking trail is home to Mud Pond Preserve in the town of Nassau. The preserve is nearly 100 acres and the trail ends on a vista overlooking the 6-acre pond.

This preserve and trail is perfect for the day hiker just looking to get away from it all.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: townnassau.digitaltowpath.org:10091/content/Parks/View/1

View of the Hudson Valley from Ulster County, NY and Minnewaska State Park Preserve.

Ulster County, NY

Hudson Valley Rail Trail

This paved trail extends from the Walkway over the Hudson, in Ulster County, to New Paltz. There are multiple entry points to the rail trail where the trail offers amazing views and a wonderful place to spend the day.

With several pavilions along the way, you can also be sure to enjoy the walk, run or bike ride under several stone-arch bridges and past two trailside cabooses.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: hudsonvalleyrailtrail.net

Minnewaska State Park Preserve

Located in Ulster County, NY in the Shawangunk Mountains, this is probably one of the most popular areas for hiking in the Hudson Valley. Activities at Minnewaska State Park Preserve include hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, horseback riding and rock climbing.

Due to its popularity, it does receive more visitors than other locations and is subject to closure to new visitors often on the weekends due to overcrowding.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, 9am to 6pm; year-round
FEES: Vehicle Entry Fee $10
WEBSITE: parks.ny.gov/parks/minnewaska/details.aspx

Mohonk Preserve

With ober 8,000 acres of cliffs, forests, fields, ponds and streams, this preserve also boasts over 70 miles of carriage roads and 40 miles of trails. There is plenty of space in this outdoor wonderland to hike, cycle, run trails, cross-country ski, snowshoe and go horseback riding.

The visitors center and immediate grounds are free to the public. To access the land you need to have a membership or buy a day pass.

West Trapps Trailhead

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, 7am for members/9am for day-use visitors
FEES: Visitors Center and immediate grounds – FREE
DAY PASS FEE: $15 for hiker | $20 for bikers, climbers and horseback riders
WEBSITE: www.mohonkpreserve.org

Schunnemunk State Park

Located in New Windsor, the Schunnemunk has 8 trails ranging from over 3 miles to almost 10 miles. Offering great views from the mountain top, the hikes have been described as ‘moderate’.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset; year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: parks.ny.gov/parks/184/maps.aspx

Hiking in the woods.
Photo courtesy of Unsplash.com

Westchester County, NY

Anthony’s Nose, Peekskill

With an elevation of 900+ feet, Anthony’s Nose is a popular hike in Westchester County. Although the beginning portions of the hike is rocky and steep, the view from above is well worth it.

Once arriving at the summit, hikers have a view of the Bear Mountain Bridge and surrounding area.

On the weekends, you can reach Anthony’s Nose trails by way of the Metro-North Hudson Line, stopping at the Manitou station. The entrance is between 1-2 miles from the station.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: hikethehudsonvalley.com/hikes/anthonys-nose

Blue Mountain Reservation

This over 1,500 acre park located in Peekskill, NY offers miles of trails available for mountain biking, strolling, nature study and hiking. There are some challenging hikes to the tops of two large peaks on the property, Mount Spitzenberg an Blue Mountain.

The 12 mile Briarcliff-Peekskill Trailway is accessible from the Blue Mountain Trail system.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round, 8am to dusk
FEES: Weekend Parking Fee (May – Sept & Daily from May – Labor Day) $5 w/ park pass; $10 w/o park pass
WEBSITE: parks.westchestergov.com/blue-mountain-reservation

Old Croton Aqueduct Trail/State Historic Park

This National Historic Landmark Trail is a perfect day out. The lower end of the trail starts in Yonkers, NY and continues north to the village of Croton-on-Hudson.

Accessible from several points along the trail. Over 26 miles long, the trail is perfect for jogging, hiking, walk and biking. Some of the trail can get muddy and is rocky.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: aqueduct.org/plan-visit

Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, Pound Ridge

Located in Pound Ridge, Ward Pound Ridge Reservation is a great place to visit. With an elevation of 860+ feet, Ward Pound Ridge Reservation is a wonderful place for hiking in the Hudson Valley.

The reservation is also home to the Trailside Nature Museum, as well as trails for horseback riding.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week: 8am – sunset; year-round
PARKING: $5 with Park Pass, $10 without Park Pass — daily May through mid-October; weekends only mid-October through mid-May.
WEBSITE: https://parks.westchestergov.com/ward-pound-ridge-reservation

Summit of Pollepel Island - the home of Bannerman Castle. Tours are offered during the warmer months
Sunset from Upper Landing Park in Poughkeepsie, NY

More Hiking in the Hudson Valley

Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail

Stretching between Rockland County and Orange County, the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail starts at Harriman State Park. Spanning the entire length of Harriman and Bear Mountain State Parks, the trail weaves in and out of the Appalachian Trail.

Approximately 10 miles from end to end, the trail offers magnificent views of peaks, valleys, lakes and rivers.

HOURS: Open 7 days a week, year-round
FEES: Free
WEBSITE: www.alltrails.com/trail/us/new-york/ramapo-dunderberg-triangle-trail-loop

Helpful Websites for Hiking in the Hudson Valley

There are plenty of reputable websites that can help you find a specific hike or more information regarding the hikes difficulty, etc.

Hike the Hudson Valley

This comprehensive website is a great resource for the newbie hiker and also for the experienced hiker. The hikes are often updated and offer honest information. In addition to be a database of the hikes available, they also have a blog on the website. Website: hikethehudsonvalley.com

NY/NJ Trail Conference

The NY/NJ is committed to the preservation of public trails. It is a volunteer-run program. Although their website is not extensive, it is a great way to get an idea of several trails and what you may be interested in. Website: www.nynjtc.org

Hiking in the Hudson Valley Woods and Beyond

Being prepared for Hiking in the Hudson Valley

Hiking in the Hudson Valley is a year-round activity, so be prepared for any type of weather.

Essentials for Hiking in the Hudson Valley

Hydration Pack Backpack 900D with 2L Leak-Proof Water Bladder

85 Pieces Hard Shell Mini Compact First Aid Kit

Aluminum Adjustable Trekking Poles – 1 set (2 poles)

Protective Face Cover

Hydration Bladder 2 Liter Leak Proof Water Reservoir

Wool Socks 80% Merino Men’s and Women’s (3 pairs)


Where to Next????

Now that you have learned about hiking in the Hudson Valley, let’s see where you should go next…

Map Key for the Hudson Valley Exploring Map

Until the Next Adventure…


Discover the most beautiful hikes in the Hudson Valley. Hiking in the Hudson Valley is a popular activity. Many people make day trips from New York City while other make Hudson Valley Weekends out of their adventures. Hudson Valley Hiking can be found in each of the 10 counties that make up this beautiful area of New York. Things to do in New York | Things to do in the Hudson Valley | #newyork


Jackie from Hudson Valley Exposed


I am a Native New Yorker who moved to the Hudson Valley for college and instantly fell in love. 
I believe that you don’t have to travel far in order to have an Amazing Adventure. Let me Expose you to your Next HV Adventure and teach you how to make memories the will last a lifetime.