The uncompromising terrain of Bear Mountain State Park means that many of the hiking trails are best reserved for seasoned walkers and those with plenty of outdoors experience. However, there are several easier trails that visitors of all ages can enjoy. Whatever your group's level, most Bear Mountain State Park cabins provide an ideal base for exploring the park on foot.
Rated as easy in terms of difficulty, this three-mile trail is great for families. Enjoy the view of the waterfall you'll pass, as well as superb views across the Hudson. If you're staying in one of the nearby Bear Mountain State Park hotels, you can easily access this trail.
This moderately difficult four-mile trail skirts the western side of Hessian Lake. Wildflowers are abundant along this route, and there is a good chance you'll be able to spot some local wildlife, too.
Featuring strenuous rock scrambles and steep ascents, this trail, just under seven miles, is rated as hard in terms of its difficulty. However, as the route passes over Bald Mountain, the views to Bear Mountain Bridge are exceptional.
There's a whole host of family activities awaiting you just outside the local Bear Mountain State Park cabins. Whatever the season, you will find something suitable for all age groups, from cross-country skiing opportunities in winter to visiting the park's pool in summer.
Home to numerous animals, including native turtles, frogs, and salamanders, alongside three separate museums, the Trailside Musem and Zoo is a must-see for natural history lovers. Entertaining educational programs are also offered throughout the year.
In winter, Bear Mountain State Park opens an ice rink for skaters of all levels. The excellent views make for a stunning backdrop as you enjoy the ice.
Paddleboats are available to hire on Hessian Lake and provide the whole family with a fun way to explore the park. Just keep in mind that each boat must have someone at least 16 years of age as an operator.