Why we love it
Few rail trails provide a bigger payoff in scenery and history. Stretching 23 miles, it affords magnificent views of the Shawangunk Ridge and crosses bridges over the Wallkill River and Rondout Creek. The trip across the latter — on a trestle 150 feet above the water — is truly spectacular. The trail also runs alongside the remains of mines and kilns that produced Rosendale Cement, used to construct the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge and U.S. Capitol. With numerous access points, the flat, hard-packed trail is perfect for a bike ride, run or stroll of any length.
More to explore
The trail passes through New Paltz and Rosendale, both worth a pit stop to shop or eat. In the former, Historic Huguenot Street preserves half a dozen homes of the community’s early settlers, while the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz offers intriguing art exhibits. For access to hillier terrain, the River-to-Ridge Trail connects the rail trail with Mohonk Preserve atop the Shawangunks.
- Flat, 23-mile trail
- Spectacular scenery
- Interesting industrial remains
- Cool towns to explore