Miles: 6.3 miles
Time: 3 hours 45 minutes
Elevation gain: 1,791 feet
Year to date miles: 424.1
At the beginning of the hike: Building next to he Merry go round.
Middle of the hike: Porta potties at Bear Mountain summit.
$8 to park at Bear Mountain Inn. Park near the skating rink. Very large parking lot.
From parking lot, head towards the ice skating rink and lake.
The AT starts to the left of a children's playground.
Follow the trail over many stone steps.
At times you will walk along or cross Perkins Memorial Drive.
Reach Perkins Memorial tower at summit.
Continue as the AT loops around the summit area.
Cross Perkins Memorial Drive again.
Cross Seven Lakes Drive.
Shortly after the crossing, turn left on the 1777W trail, leaving the AT.
Turn left on the yellow blazed Suffern-Bear Mountain (S-BM) trail.
Cross Seven Lakes Drive.
When you see the Bear Mountain parking lot, turn right off the S-BM trail to arrive back at your car.
Map: Harriman - Bear Mountain Trails (north map)
I was looking for a hike where I wouldn't be frustrated by tripping over leaf covered rocks. This almost fit the bill. The hike up Bear Mountain is short and strenuous with very easy terrain. There are hundreds of stone steps which make the 2 mile hike up to the summit relatively easy. No tripping! The hike down on the south side of the mountain was still pretty good footing. The 1777W trail was a nice woods road. The S-BM trail was moderately slippery. My ankle hasn't felt the same since I sprained it twice this spring - it feels much less stable than it used to. So I hiked the S-BM trail at a pokey speed.
Bear Mountain has excellent views of course. Many people (and dogs) do this hike, so expect company. Our dogs got a lot of attention, which they loved. You can drive to the summit (and skip the hike), so the summit is crowded. Fewer people go down the south side, but there are nice views to be had there, and a quieter atmosphere.
|Bear Mountain Inn, Bear Mountain Bridge, and Anthony's Nose|
|Start of the hike, near the playground.|
|A seat for a dog :)|
|Better when shared|
|The trail briefly follows Perkins Memorial Drive, then heads back up into the woods.|
|View from the tower|
|No dogs allowed up the tower.|
|Perkins Memorial Tower - worth the climb.|
Interesting photos inside showing the history of the park.
|View heading down from the summit.|
|Huge area with a view - only a handful of people here. Nice spot for a break.|
|Trek (aka Doodle) at a map for Doodletown, a ghost town.|