Hudson Valley Parent

HVP June 2016

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Page 18 of 47 n Hudson Valley Parent 19 By STACEY LUTZ I f you are interested in camping, hiking, fishing, canoeing, geocach- ing or any other outdoor activity, there's no better time to explore the state, county and town parks sprin- kled throughout the area than now. With the Hudson Highlands, Sha- wangunk & Catskill Mountains, the Hudson River and an abundance of majestic waterfalls, the Hudson Val- ley really is a fresh air enthusiast's dream! Below are a few of our area counties' most interesting spots. Dutchess delights About twice a week during the spring and fall, Jeff Brick of Rhine- beck, his infant son, Oliver, and his 10-year-old daughter, Ella, frequent Mills Norrie State Park - 1,000 acres along the Hudson that con- nects the Margaret Lewis Norrie State Park and the Ogden and Ruth Livingston Mills Memorial State Park. The family enjoys the Mills Mansion tour but other amenities in- clude campsites, cabin/cottage use, an environmental museum, boating, kayaking and other watersports, two 9-hole golf courses, biking, picnic areas, and a full-service restaurant in the clubhouse. Ferncliff Forest Game Refuge and Forest Preserve in Rhinebeck is a 200-acre forest with 4 miles of trails for hiking, camping (by permit only), mountain biking, skiing, fish- ing, and picnicking. Along the trails are what's left of old wells, root cellars and old foundations. It is also one of only a few old growth forests in the Hudson Valley. Red Hook's Poet's Walk Park of- fers 2 miles of beautiful trails (some of which are gravel while others are hard-packed dirt) that allow for great hikes through the woods, stunning views of the Hudson and the Overlook Pavilion, a rustic Sum- mer House. Its name is supposedly in honor of "Rip Van Winkle" author Washington Irving and other literary greats who strolled through. Outdoors in Orange Winding Hills Park in Montgom- ery features 51 spots for families to do everything from basic tent to RV camping. Some of the sites have electric access but all are located close to restroom and playground areas. The 518-acre park has a trail system, horseshoe pits, a volleyball court, picnic shelter, comfort sta- tions, and Diamond Lake for fishing The parks have it! Outdoor Hudson Valley adventures (Continued on Page 20) Photos by Stacey Lutz Eight-month-old Hunter Pilgrene, seems more than comfortable surrounded by nature near Lake Minnewaska.

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