Enjoying the great outdoors is such a big part of the Dutchess County culture. With numerous hiking trails, beautiful gardens, Hudson River activities and nature paths, it provides individuals of all different athletic abilities to get out and move! We have a wonderful running community here, and today we’re sharing our Top 10 places to run in the area. Lace up and get out there!
1. Harlem Valley Rail Trail
Set in the eastern portion of the county, the Harlem Valley Rail Trail provides gorgeous sweeping views of the country landscape. Although portions of it are still being completed, there are currently 16 miles of paved trail stretching from the trailhead in Wassaic to Orphan Farm Road in Copake.
2. Long Dock Park / Dennings Point
Accessible from the Beacon train station, the Long Dock Park / Dennings Point area is convenient, yet quiet place for a jog. A wide dirt path leads you out to Dennings Point, where you can then dip into a wooded trail. Not too hilly and not too long, this trail is a great option for all runners!
3. Vassar Farm
Yup, that’s right, you can run right through a farm! Vassar Farm offers great variety for runners, with some trails being more difficult and having rough terrain, while others are easier, wide, flat paths. We’d highly recommend this spot for your next run!
Another place well-known by the local running community are the dirt roads in Millbrook. They’re challenging, hilly and will leave you breathless but it’s the perfect location to train for those upcoming races.
5. Bowdoin Park
This county park is home of many high school cross country meets, and one that local runners love too. Don’t be fooled, this hilly course is great for working some variety into your runs.
6. Walkway Over the Hudson
This pedestrian bridge happens to be the longest elevated in the world, and we’re lucky enough to have it right here in Dutchess. It may be one of our largest tourist attractions, but there's no doubt everyone enjoys running this flat path with panoramic views of the Hudson River Valley and beyond!
7. Dutchess County Rail Trail
Continuing east on the Walkway leads you right into the Dutchess County Rail Trail. The trail spans 13-miles from the Hopewell Depot to the Walkway and has several access points. Another great one for runners of all athletic abilities!
8. Locust Grove
Enjoy the outdoors and history at this National Historic Landmark. With gardens and views of the Hudson, the miles will tick by in no time as you admire the pristine grounds. The site sits right off Route 9, but you would never know it as you zone out on these peaceful trails.
9. Mount Beacon
If you’re looking for a challenge, then you need to hit up Mount Beacon. This popular hiking trail is steep and very difficult, but the payoff at the top is worth it.
One of the largest state forests in Dutchess County, the ‘909’ is technically known as the Taconic Hereford Multiple Use Area. Right of the Taconic State Parkway and providing 27 glorious trail miles.