As a first time hiker, I found this to be really enjoyable. The directions were on point so I didn't get lost any part of the way. I mainly wanted to provide a trail map and explain a bit about the journey back to NYC via Metro North.
I started logging the trails a bit late so it's a little under 5 miles. http://cl.ly/image/2s2d2v1Y3o0j
Metro North - Currently the only trains stopping at Manitou NYC bound on weekends arrive at 1:22pm, 4:26pm, 7:30pm. You have to wave them down at the little shack with the seats. Having not realized this, we missed a few trains. What you can do however is wave down any train heading towards Poughkeepsie and hop on it for one stop (Garrison). These trains arrive every hour. When you get off at Garrison, wait for the train that is going towards Croton–Harmon. Hop on that train and once you reach Croton-Harmon, you will need to wait for an express train back to Grand Central Terminal. This seems to be a bit of information that's missing. We found several other stranded hikers trying to get back to NYC. Hopefully this helps others and others leave this information on other trails they take. Happy Hiking!