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New York, NY: Westmoreland Sanctuary

Explore the ponds, boulders, and marshes of a wooded nature preserve on this 6-mile hike in Westchester County.

Rating

On this easy 6-mile double loop hike, you’ll see the best of one of Westchester County’s prettiest preserves: low wetlands, dense woods, eerie rock outcroppings, and glacial features.
Start off on the Easy Loop Trail, passing under the wooden arch, to the Catbird Trail, the Spruce Hill Trail and the Hemlock Trail, veering right at every junction. Turn right again at the Coles Kettle Trail, a 1.5-mile loop around a kettle-hole pond scoured out by a passing glacier. Continue through a swamp (watch for snakes snoozing among the pickerel weed), then hang a right on the Hemlock Trail, the Laurel Trail and the Brookside Trail. Remain right to climb Fox Run and Sentry Ridge, where stone walls divide the forest and wild turkeys roam the hills. Follow the Lost Pond Trail, then go right on the Wood Thrush Trail to the massive tulip trees near the park’s 730-foot high point (730 feet). Look for turtles sunning on Bechtel Lake, then rejoin the Easy Loop Trail to finish the day.
Info: Maps available at kiosk in main parking lot. (914) 666-8448; westmorelandsanctuary.org
Hike provided by Christopher and Catherine Brooks, authors of 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: New York City (Menasha Ridge Press)

To Trailhead

From White Plains, take I-684 N to exit 4. Go W on NY 172 for .3 mi. and turn L on Chestnut Ridge Rd. Drive 1.3 mi. to entrance on L.

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