A National Honor for 5 NYS Trails

In-line skaters on the Harlem Valley Rail Trail

In-line skaters on the Harlem Valley Rail Trail

Five New York State trails were named to the list of National Recreational Trails on National Trails Day, June 7.

The five trails were included in a list of 21 trails in 11 states added to the National Trails System. Presently, 1,245 National Recreational Trails (NRT) ranging from less than a mile to 485 miles in length, have been designated on federal, state, municipal, and privately owned lands in all 50 states. Thirty-eight NRTS are located in New York State.

National Recreation Trail designation recognizes existing trails and trail systems that link communities to recreational opportunities on public lands and in local parks across the nation. Each of the new national recreation trails will receive a certificate of designation, a letter of congratulations from Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and a set of trail markers.

The National Recreation Trails Program is jointly administered by the National Park Service and the Forest Service in conjunction with a number of other federal and not-for-profit partners, notably American Trails, which hosts the National Recreation Trails website.

The five NYS trails include:

Genesee Valley Greenway State Park – Monroe, Livingston, Wyoming, and Allegany Counties
This 84-mile corridor follows the route of the 19th century Genesee Valley Canal and the later Pennsylvania Railroad from the City of Rochester through 16 towns to the Village of Cuba. The flat, cinder base trail provides opportunities for bicycling, hiking, horseback riding, cross country skiing, and snowmobiling through woodlands, wetlands, river and stream valleys, rolling farmlands, steep gorges, and historic villages. Read more about the trail on the Friends of The Genesee Valley Greenway website.

Harlem Valley Rail Trail – Columbia County Section
This paved bicycle/pedestrian path is built on the railbed of the old Harlem Line of the New York Central Railroad. It is ideal for runners, bicyclists, walkers, rollerbladers, cross-county skiers, wheelchair users, hikers and dog walkers who enjoy combining the quiet beauty of rural landscapes with healthy exercise. The four miles of trail in Columbia County, from Undermountain Road to Hillsdale, feeds into Taconic State Park.

Harlem Valley Rail Trail – Dutchess County Section
The paved trail extends 10.7 miles north from the terminus of Metro North’s Harlem Valley commuter line at Wassaic to the heart of the historic Village of Millerton. Along the way, it passes through the Village of Amenia, forests, wetlands, fields and meadows.

Hudson Valley Rail Trail – Ulster County
The 3.6-mile Hudson Valley Rail Trail passes through the Black Creek Wetlands Complex (with its vistas of the Illinois Mountain Range), travels through the Town of Lloyd and connects at its eastern end to Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park. Each year the paved trail welcomes thousands of walkers, runners, cyclists, skateboarders, inline skaters, cross-country skiers, birders.

Long Path through Mine Kill State Park – Schoharie County
From open bluffs with inspiring views of Schoharie Creek, to dense groves of hemlock, pine and oak, to the tranquil Mine Kill Falls, this five-mile section of the Long Path contains a wealth of history, geology, diverse ecology and wildlife. This trail section is supported by a partnership among Mine Kill State Park, the New York Power Authority, and the Long Path North Hiking Club

Railroad structure along the Genesee Valley Greenway.

Railroad structure along the Genesee Valley Greenway.

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