This trail is NOT for everyone. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. The trail now climbs a little more, then levels off, with some minor ups and downs. Durable surfaces include established trails and campsites, rock, gravel, dry grasses or snow. Of course, hiking a steep trail during winter is more demanding than in Summer, so it is really for those prepared and capable. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from February until October. Protect wildlife and your food by storing rations and trash securely. Learn More. Are you getting tired? Is this a must-do if you are traveling with a, Is this a romantic place or activity that you would suggest for, Would you recommend this place or activity to a friend looking for an, Are the prices for this place or activity, Is this attraction a good place to visit on a, Generally considered as the best one along Hudson valley because it is challenging and has amazing views, Breakneck ridge trail is always super crowded in summer, especially on weekends. The fire that tore across Breakneck Ridge on March 9 drew timely action from firefighters and first responders in the Hudson Valley. After a very steep climb through pines, the alternative route joins, and trail reaches a south-facing viewpoint over the river. There are views through the trees of the river as you climb, but it will probably take you about 20 to 30 minutes to reach the first panoramic view -- from a rock ledge marked by a flagpole. On weekends and holidays, take the Metro-North Hudson Line from Grand Central Terminal to the Breakneck Ridge station and walk south along Route 9D to the trailhead. Pack out all trash, leftover food and litter. The main trail route now climbs through a wooded area and emerges on south-facing ledges, with views over Bull Hill and the valley between Breakneck Ridge and Bull Hill. The start is by far the most challenging section, if you are really unsure about whether this hike is for you, you could always go along to the start and have a look - it's pretty clear from the trail start. Never feed animals. The trail then makes a number of descents, ranging from mild to steep, before coming to a junction with Undercliff Trail, at 0.7 miles. These essentials will help you enjoy your outing more and will provide basic safety gear if needed. Use a lightweight stove for cooking and enjoy a candle lantern for light. The trail continues to descend along an eroded woods road, with the trail having been rerouted to the left to avoid some badly eroded sections. Alternatively, if you want to skip Cold Spring altogether and just take on the Breakneck Ridge hike, there is a train stop on Metro-North right at the start of the hike. Don't put yourself in the position of having to end your hike early because you have run out of water. The trail very quickly ascends into a super steep grade, and it becomes 99% scrambling. Hudson Highlands Fjord Trail group has plans to connect the City of Beacon with the Village of Cold Spring, from waterfront to waterfront, via the Fjord Trail. Know how to use the basic components. (Exceptions are loop hikes.). Keep in mind that fluid loss is heightened in winter as well as summer. Please note that camping and use of fire are prohibited throughout the park. Just completed this hike for the first time. It’s not the length that one should concern themselves with – it’s the steepness. Visit in small groups when possible. Altering a site is not necessary. Respect other visitors and protect the quality of their experience. Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering pack stock. 62 reviews of Breakneck Ridge "My group of 6 hiked this mountain today and it was quite spectacular. self. If you're coming on a weekday you'll need to get off at the Cold Spring Train Station. From the east end of the Bear Mountain Bridge, proceed north on N.Y. Route 9D for about 8.5 miles to the Village of Cold Spring. Despite its relatively short length, this is generally considered to be the most strenuous hike in the East Hudson Highlands. First Aid Kit - Keep it simple, compact, and weatherproof. The trail turns right here and ascends a shoulder as several trails weave through the trees. On weekdays, take the Hudson Line to the Cold Spring station. View from Breakneck Ridge. It takes 4 hours and you walk approximately 4.5 miles if you go to the apex. (Note that you have to catch the 7:47 or 8:47 trains for … The park's most well known trail - Breakneck Ridge was rated by Newsweek as one of the top 10 day hikes in America. People aren't going to keep being nice if you get lost and wind up on their lawn. Many of our hiking areas feature interconnecting network of trails. The three summits that follow provide incredible views. There may also be more essentials, depending on the season and your needs. We went in October and the light was failing by the time we made it back to the main path at the bottom - be very careful of the daylight and make sure you have lights and keep track of where you are on the map - there are a lot of paths! Please choose a different date. Common Sense - Pay attention to your environment, your energy, and the condition of your companions. The trail bears slightly to the left to find a climbable route, but this part of the trail is the most challenging from a technical point of view. Map - Know where you are and where you are going. Check out some map-reading basics here. Check the weather forecast before you head out. Sign Up or Log In. Continue ahead on Route 9D for another two miles past the intersection with N.Y. Route 301 in Cold Spring. The northwestern section of the Undercliff Trail, once you cross over the Washburn Trail, is seldom visited as most people either hike the Washburn Trail or Breakneck Ridge Trail. Turn left and follow Route 9D south for about 0.3 mile to the parking area where the hike began. This one is a little different from the previous overlooks, as a knob of Breakneck Ridge protrudes just to the left of Storm King Mountain, across the river. In contrast, it … Good campsites are found, not made. Burn all wood and coals to ash, put out campfires completely, then scatter cool ashes. Leave rocks, plants and other natural objects as you find them. Whether you are going for a day hike or backpacking overnight, it is good practice to carry what we call The Hiking Essentials. Feeding wildlife damages their health, alters natural behaviors, and exposes them to predators and other dangers. Control pets at all times, or leave them at home. The traverse of these ledges (which is missed if you take the alternative route) is a highlight of the hike. Prepare for extreme weather, hazards, and emergencies. "Good boots, good weather and plenty of water required - make sure to give yourself plenty of daylight." Cold Spring is a village in the town of Philipstown in Putnam County, New York, United States. You you will be able to park all along the side of the road or in the small parking lot located between the starting and ending point (more on that soon). The rock scrambling adds to the fun and the challenge of this hike. This section connects the Washburn Trail and the Brook Trail. Continue ahead on Route 9D for another two miles past the intersection with N.Y. Route 301 in Cold Spring. Use a waterproof/tear-resistant Tyvek Trail Conference map if available or enclose your map in a Ziplock plastic bag. 102 reviews. Protect riparian areas by camping at least 200 feet from lakes and streams. Despite its relatively short length, this is generally considered to be the most strenuous hike in the East Hudson Highlands. At the base of the descent, an easier alternative route goes off the left. Yield to other users on the trail. If there aren’t any spots there, head north just a couple hundred more yards to find a larger lot on the left. Light - A flashlight or small, lightweight headlamp will be welcome gear if you find yourself still on the trail when darkness falls. to the beach or central park for the day. The Trail Conference is a 2015 Leave No Trace partner. One big difference between Breakneck and those Catskills mountains I typically … It is NOT like going. Make a left turn at the Breakneck Bypass (red blazes) and follow the trail until you reach a sign for Wilkinson Memorial Trail. then beautiful walking along the ridge before heading down into the forest full of autumn colours. Do not attempt this hike in wet weather, or if the trail is covered with snow or ice. (c) Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics: www.LNT.org. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Near Cold Spring, New York. The blaze broke out during the evening on March 9 and continued through March 10, moving quickly across the ridge, which sits between Beacon and Cold Spring. Focus activity in areas where vegetation is absent. Check the batteries before you start out and have extras in your pack. It borders the smaller village of Nelsonville and the hamlet of Garrison. what you are going to have to do! Breakneck Ridge is a mountain along the Hudson River between Beacon and Cold Spring, New York, straddling the boundary between Dutchess and Putnam counties. Firestarter and Matches - In an emergency, you may need to keep yourself or someone else warm until help arrives. Consider splitting larger groups into smaller groups. You'll need to use both your hands and your feet in many places along the way. After this ascent, the trail levels out briefly (to your relief), followed by another climb to a view of Bull Hill and the valley below. Concentrate use on existing trails and campsites. The white-yellow-red loop is considered the regular one, and will spit you back out onto Route 9D - you just have to walk for a bit along the highway back to the train stop. The descent down the red trail is murder on your knees and hooking up with the yellow trail was definitely a sight for sore legs. Bannerman’s Castle on Pollopel Island is visible to the north, and Storm King Mountain, directly across the river, may be seen through the trees. Let nature's sounds prevail. Excellent views! My friends and I got lost and it got soo dark to the point we was stuck in the woods for hours and waited for a police to recuse us.. going up took us 2 hours and please follow the signs on the trees, Locals are pretty annoyed by having to stop for idiot out of towners who think the road and the trail is their playground. Breakneck Ridge Loop. Total Distance: 5.5 miles Difficulty: medium - difficult (multiple rock scrambles, 1,670'+ total elevation gain) Estimated hiking time: 4+ hours - 2 people, 5 - 6.25 hours - group The hike begins on west (southbound) side of the road just north of the underpass where you will find the Breakneck Ridge Trail (white blazes). 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