South Taconic Trail Extension

In the summer of 2015, a 6.5-mile extension of the white-blazed South Taconic Trail, constructed by volunteers, was opened. The southern trailhead is now on Shagroy Road, just north of Millerton, New York.

Heading north from Shagroy Road, the trail crosses a stream and skirts the edge of a small pond. At 0.2 mile, a red-blazed trail leads in 0.3 mile to the Rudd Pond Camping Area. The South Taconic Trail continues on a wide woods road, climbing gradually. At 1.5 miles, another red-blazed trail on the left heads downhill, reaching Rudd Drive (the park entrance road) in 0.6 mile. Here, the South Taconic Trail turns right and continues to ascend, passing, at 2.2 miles, a west-facing viewpoint that offers a broad vista of the Harlem Valley and beyond to the Catskill Mountains.

The trail crosses the private Kaye Road at 3.5 miles and continues to ascend, passing several more viewpoints, with the most spectacular viewpoint being the final one, at 6.2 miles. After descending steeply, the South Taconic Trail reaches a junction, at 6.5 miles, with the Quarry Hill Trail. This side trail leads steeply downhill over a rocky shoulder of the ridge, to a small parking area on Quarry Hill Road, 6.7 miles north of the center of Millerton.

The junction with the Quarry Hill Trail marks the northern end of the 2015 extension of the trail. The South Taconic Trail continues north, leading in 1.3 miles to the summit of Brace Mountain, in 1.6 miles to a junction with the red-blazed Mt. Frissell Trail, and 5.5 miles to the summit of Alander Mountain.

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Dave A's picture

I'm planning a hike from the CT/MA border over Mount Frissle and use the new section of the South Taconics trail to end a Rudd Pond. 2 Questions: 1) I estimate 11.5 miles. Is that relatively accurate? 2) What is the road access like on Mount Riga and Mount Washington roads? We'd like to use these for the car shuttle. I know they are dirt but we have a Jeep. Are they private or can we use these? Thanks! - D
Daniel Chazin's picture

The following information has been provided by Kay Cynamon, who is in charge of maintaining the hiking trails in the South Taconics and is very familiar with the area:  "You have planned a beautiful hike, although you might want to consider doing it in the reverse direction, as you'll enjoy the views more going down Mt. Frissell. I'm not sure when you are planning to do the hike, but Mt. Washington Road (between Mt. Riga Road and East Street) is not maintained in the winter, so check conditions before you go. Mt. Riga Road ascends quite steeply but is in generally good shape; Mt. Washington Road is quite rutted, so be sure to drive carefully, even with a Jeep. Both are public roads that can be used to access the trails. The trail from the parking area up to the junction with South Taconic Trail is 2.0 miles long. It’s another 1.6 miles to the junction with the Quarry Road Trail (this is the start of the new section of the South Taconic Trail), and it’s 6.5 miles along the South Taconic Trail down to Shagroy Road, for total of 10.1 miles."