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Rockland Lake State Park
Off Route US 9W, 24 miles north of New York City. Main entrance and pool parking area -- GPS Coordinates: 41.130569, -73.923954
Rockland Lake State Park's lake is located on a ridge of Hook Mountain adjacent to Hook Mountain State Park above the west bank of the Hudson River.
A bike and walking path circumnavigates Rockland Lake. To find detailed descriptions of specific hikes, click here and scroll down the "Parks" column to the name of this park.
See Web Link on this site for an overview (in a NYS Parks master planning document) of the park's major attractions.
The park offers two Olympic-sized swimming pools and two kiddie pools, picnic tables and grills, a car-top boat launch and boat rentals, hiking trails with breathtaking views of the Hudson Valley, six tennis courts and two golf courses. Anglers can fish Rockland Lake for bass, perch and norlunge; walkers and joggers can use the fitness trail around the lake. Winter visitors can enjoy designated cross-country ski trails and sledding slopes.
From 1831 to 1924, Rockland Lake was the hub of another great industry that broke the serenity of the riverfront-the harvesting of ice. The discoverer of the superiority of ice from spring-fed Rockland Lake is unknown, but its renown spread to New York City, where the better restaurants would accept no other. In 1711, John Slaughter purchased land at Rockland Landing, including Trough Hollow. A dock was built, and gradually some commercial traffic appeared, but Nyack and Haverstraw had better natural facilities. As ice was harvested, it was conveyed to Rockland Landing by a sort of "escalator" and loaded onto riverboats. Later, the giant Knickerbocker Ice Company was formed, at one time employing four thousand men. Icehouses measuring more than 350 feet long, 100 feet wide, and 50 feet high, each with up to a 100,000- ton capacity, were situated at the northeast corner of the lake. In 1 86o, a cog railway was built through Trough Hollow, connecting lake and dock. A spur line of the West Shore Railroad also ran to the icehouses.
May 1 to September 30th, dogs not permitted in the Park. October 1 to March 31, dogs permitted in the Park but not on bike path or improved walkways.