Orak Mansion Ruins — Harriman State Park
Stony Point (Rockland County)
Why we love it
Despite — or perhaps because of — the ever-encroaching woods, the substantial stone remains of Orak exude a haunting grandeur. Constructed in 1923, the mansion belonged to George Buchanan, a VP of the Corn Products Refining Company. Its name spells backward the gooey sweetener that made his fortune — Karo syrup, a prime ingredient in pecan pie. Reportedly, Orak’s dining room resembled a ship’s cabin: It featured porthole-shaped windows and a floor that gently rocked. The house was demolished in 1973, after the property became part of Harriman State Park.
More to explore
Continue past Orak on the Suffern-Bear Mountain trail to enjoy some spectacular views — of the surrounding park from the Jackie Jones fire tower and the Manhattan skyline at the Big Hill shelter. The moderately strenuous out-and-back hike covers about 5 miles.
- Dramatic ruins
- Great vistas further along the trail
Directions, hours, etc.: https://www.nynjtc.org/hike/orak-ruins-jackie-jones-fire-tower-and-big-hill-shelter