Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Pine Swamp Mountain to Surebridge Mountain

Harriman State Park
Orange Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Arden-Surebridge Trail: Red blaze
Ramapo Dunderberg Trail: Red blaze
Bottle Cap Trail: Blazed with bottle caps
Long Path: Green blaze

Total Time: 3:10 hour
Estimated Distance: 5.8 miles
Level of Difficulty: Difficult
Level of Recommendation: Highly recommended
Points Of Interest: Varied scenery, Pine Swamp Mnt View, Old Mines
Pros: Very scenic area, good views, historic mines
Cons: None

Google Map of Parking:

View 2014 Hiking Locations in a larger map

This was a fall foliage hike on a beautiful autumn day. I was off from work and took advantage with a big hike, covering some remote parts of Harriman. I parked at the Lake Skanatati Parking area off of Seven Lakes Drive, and took the Arden-Surebridge (A-SB) Trail up the mountain. This area is currently being refurbished and there is trail work with steps on the lower part near the lake. A short but good climb up leads to a popular viewpoint overlooking Lake Skanatati and Lake Kanawauke, where I snapped some nice colorful photos.

I continued on the A-SB Trail past the Pine Swamp Mine, and then continued past the Dunning Trail terminus. At "Times Square", a trail intersection with many different spurs, I took the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail north, ascending one of the highest points in Harriman, and then down to the Bottle Cap Trail.

The Bottle Cap Trail is an official unofficial Trail. It is marked by bottle caps nailed into trees inside of the typical blazes. I don't believe that is maintained by the regular trail volunteers, but it is still officially sanctioned being on the maps and not being removed by rangers or volunteers. I took the Bottle Cap Trail west past the Surebridge Mine and then to its end at the A-SB Trail. I took the A-SB Trail up, and the trail gets very interesting here with sparse tree cover and dense brush. I took this trail back to Times Square, and then took the Long Path the Hogencamp Mine, and continued along the Long Path back towards Lake Skanatati and the parking area.

Map of the Route.
Harriman/Bear Mountain Trails Northern Map

Lake Skanatati at the Parking Area

New Steps at the A-SB Trail Beginning

View of Lake Skanatati and Lake Kanawauke
from the Pine Swamp Mountain View
Another Perspective from the Above View

Lake Skanatati from the Viewpoint

Scenery Along the A-SB Trail

One of the Mine Openings of the Pine Swamp Mine

Scenery Along the A-SB Trail

Rock at Times Square

Black Rat Snake Across the Ramapo Dunderberg Trail

View Ascending Up on the Ramapo Dunderberg Trail

Red Huckleberry Bushes Atop the High Point on the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail 

Another Angle at the Above Area

Descending the Ramapo Dunderberg Trail

Marker at the Bottle Cap Trail.
The Ribbon is to Make it Noticeable at the Ramapo Dunderberg Trail Intersection

Small Mine Shaft of the Surebridge Mine Along the Bottle Cap Trail./
This is not Shown on the Trail Conference Maps

Scenery Along the Bottle Cap Trail

Lonely Tree Along the A-SB Trail

Scenery Along the A-SB Trail

Amazing Colors Along the A-SB Trail

More Amazing Colors on the A-SB Trail

Rock Formation Known as "Cape Horn" Right Off the Long Path.
I went Through  These Rocks for a Scenic Bypass

Peninsula on Lake Skanatati as Seen from the Long Path

A Zoom into the Above Photo

View of Lake Skanatati Near the End of the Hike


  1. picture 17 is not "small mine shaft" but rather a home for one of the mine supervisors in the area. note the carefully laid foundation stones.
    picture 23 is not cape horn, as stated, but rather "the Cat's Eye" about 100 feet before massive rock formation called cape horn.
    Still heshy, great photos. sincerely, dave sutter

  2. David, thanks for your comments. These are appreciated. I will leave the original captions so that the reference of your comment is still relevant.

    1. heshula, glad we have same tastes in harriman. best. duvid