Blue Mountain Reservation
From the north: Take NY Route 9 south. Exit at Welcher Avenue; turn right and follow to the park entrance. From the south: Take NY Route 9A to NY Route 9 north. Exit at Welcher Avenue, turn left and follow to park entrance.
Public transportation: Take Metro-North Hudson line to the Peekskill station. From the station, head east on Hudson Avenue for 0.7 mile to Walnut Street and a sign To DePew Park. Follow Walnut Street into DePew Park and take the Lake Mitchell Trail to the swimming pool parking lot to go into Blue Mountain Reservation. .
The rolling, boulder-strewn terrain of Blue Mountain Reservation also includes ponds, streams, hardwood forest, and two mountains with panoramic views of the Hudson River.
The trails in Blue Mountain Reservation meander up hills and down through valleys. Aside from the singel-track trails created by mountain bikers, the trails are on woods roads. Blazes and numbered posts change all too frequently because groups decide on their own to mark a trail. Hikers seeking solitude might prefer weekday visits to avoid the heavy mountain bike activity on weekends.The official park trail map designates most intersections with numbers, but unfortunately these numbers do not appear on the ground at most intersections. It is best to print out the trail map from the Blue Mountain website, but the colors on the map indicate the degree of difficulty of the trail, not the blaze color. If available pick up a free map from the entrance kiosk. A five-mile loop includes both Mt. Spitzenberg and Blue Mountain. The north end of the 12-mile Briarcliff-Peekskill Trailway is within Blue Mountain Reservation.
Rolling woodlands with large granite boulders, glacial erratics, and rock outcroppings comprise the landscape of Blue Mountain Reservation. Massive rock formations tower above trails while stately trees, tiny lichen, and abundant ferns make a picturesque setting. Blue Mountain Reservation was originally part of Van Cortlandt Manor, purchased from local Native Americans in 1677. Much later the Loundsbury family owned and operated a sand, gravel, cement, brick and general contracting business. The gravel pit was located at the present day beach parking lot. New Pond and Loundsbury Pond were constructed for making ice; once cut the ice was stored to be sold in the summer. In 1926, Westchester County purchased the property. During Franklin D. Roosevelt's administration, a Civilian Conservation Corps Camp was established there. The corp members build the woods roads as well as the Trail Lodge and two comfort stations, now designated as historically significant.
The park offers hiking, picnicking, fishing, a playground, as well as archery and shooting ranges. It is nationally known for its mountain biking trails. All trails are open for hiking and many are wide woods roads, offering plenty of room for both bikers and hikers.