Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Paradise Unpaved

After living in the Bronx for almost a year now, I think I subconsciously began to believe that the whole of New York was covered with 6 story buildings, bodegas, and unisex barbershops. Luckily Sarah and I had a chance to get out this weekend to get a taste of the nature that New York State has on offer.

After finishing up my last final, and Sarah a long week at work, we boarded the Metro North from Harlem and headed north up to the Catskills. I love traveling by train, especially when it can drop you in nature at the trailhead of a wonderful hike

Our train ride took us along the Hudson River past West Point and other neat, old-looking (to a west-coaster) places. We disembarked at Cold Spring and started our hike up Breakneck Ridge. It was a pretty strenuous hike, as we clambered up the side of this huge mountain, but was well worth it as the views over the Hudson were pretty fantastic. We got a good view of Bannerman Castle. It was used as a defensive position during the Revolutionary war.

It was neat to sit atop this mountain and think about British ships being turned back as they attempted to make it down the Hudson river to attack New York. Again, this wasn't the sort of field trip we took as school kids in California. We did spend a lot of time learning this the Revolutionary war though, so this was a pretty cool to see something of historical significance from this period.

The area we hiked was pretty lush and green. We even saw some hawks... Or at least I think they were hawks.

After a long day of hiking we found a great stream to cool our feet.

We ended the day by browsing around downtown Cold Spring and dinner on the spot where Washington and his military advisors camped when they came to scout out a military training facility that became West Point.

All in all it was a real nice way to spend a friday.