Sunday, July 21, 2013

Peters Kill Area,
Minnewaska State Park

Ulster County,
New York

Hiking Trails:

Red Loop Trail: Red blaze
Yellow Connector Trail: Yellow blaze
High Peters Kill Trail: Blue blaze
Bullwheel Trail: White blaze

Total Time: 1:45
Estimated Distance: 3.3 miles
Level of Difficulty: Moderate
Level of Recommendation: Recommended
Points Of Interest:  Scenic brook, good view, and interesting terrain
Overall very scenic area
Cons: $8 charge for parking, very little shade on last part of hike

Google Map of Parking:

View 2013 Hiking Locations in a larger map

This hike was the first day after the official heat wave of 2013, where we had temperatures in the mid to upper 90's for a week straight. Though it wasn't in  the 90's, it was still in the upper 80's with a full sun and was pretty hot. I parked in the Peter's Kill Area off Route 44/55, and took the Red Loop Trail down to the Peter's Kill. At the bottom of the stream I took the short Yellow Connector Trail to the High Peter's Kill Trail. I then climbed up the western flank above the Peter's Kill, which is a plateau, expecting to find a good view there as the map says. While there is a view near the top, it is pretty overgrown and not too impressive.

I then went back down the trail to the Peter's Kill, crossed it, and then continued on the High Peter's Kill Trail up the steep climb on the eastern flank of the Peter's Kill. Near the top on the right there is a barrens area of white rock with an outstanding vista with views towards the main part of Minnewaska and the Catskills to the north.

I then continued along the High Peter's Kill Trail to the intersection of the Bullwheel Trail, and then took the Bullwheel Trail down. The top part of the Bullwheel Trail is covered with short brush and exposed, and much of the trail going down is also exposed. At the end of the Bullwhell Trail I decided to cover the other part of the Red Loop Trail that goes down to the Peter's Kill, so I took that trail again and veered off an old route that goes straight down to the Kill on the right. From there I took the Red Loop Trail back up the stream and then veered along with it to the east as it climbed the side of the ravine. At the top the trail goes through an exposed area and passes rock climbing cliffs to the left. Due to the heat and sun bearing down on me, I veered off to the left in the woods and following an a climbing trail back to the parking area.

Map of the Route
Shawangunk Trails: Mohonk Preserve

Carriageway leading into the beginning of the hike from the parking area

Brand new bridge crossing the Peter's Kill.
There was still fresh sawdust from cutting the wood from this bridge.

View from the Western Flank of the Peter's Kill Gorge.
The rocks across the deep valley are the view from
where the subsequent view pictures were taken.

View from the eastern flank of the Peter's Kill Gorge,
on the High Peter's Kill Trail.
Looking south towards Beacon Hill.

Me at the Above View

Me at the Above View, Facing North

From the Above View Facing North Towards the Catskill High Peaks

Large Exposed Area on the Bullwheel Trail

View from the Red Loop Trail Descending Towards the Peter's Kill
Facing North. I believe that  Mountain up Ahead is Slide Mountain

Peter's Kill Flowing  through the White Quartz Rock.
The Water Level is Low

A nice natural pool in the Peter's Kill.
Though swimming is not allowed here, you will often
see people swimming here

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