Sunday, April 26, 2020

Sterling Forest Townsend Long Meadow Extension Loop

Sterling Forest State Park
Orange Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Townsend Trail: Orange with Green Stripe
Long Meadow Extension Trail: Green with White Stripe

Total Time: 1:55 hour
Estimated Distance: 4.7 Miles

Pros: Very quiet area, good views
Cons: Return Trail lacks excitement

As Coronavirus continues I am hiking in isolation by myself, in remote areas. This is not a popular hiking area, and it was also raining in the morning and in the afternoon, so people were not out hiking. I had a unique window of opportunity to hike between the morning and afternoon rains, but it was gray and damp.

Nevertheless, this is a very good hike and highly recommended. It's got two great views and is very quiet and peaceful. I parked at the parking area off Clinton Road directly off Route 17A, and took the Townsend Trail up the mountain to the view. I then continued along the trail to the next view, and then descended the mountain on the trail, passing a small but very scenic pond along the way. I took the trail to the end, at the parking area on Orange Turnpike, and walked on the road for a short distance past the Southfields furnace, and to the Long Meadow Extension Trail. This trail is a double-width path, and is mostly unremarkable. It also functions as a bike path, and can be walked on relatively quickly. It was very wet and muddy from all the rain. I took this trail to the end and and then back to my car.

Map of the Route

Confluence of the Townsend and Long Meadow Extension Trails

Approaching the View on a Large Rock Face

Rock Cairn Approaching the View

View from the Townsend Trail, Facing East

View of Route 17A from the View

Indian Kill Reservoir from the Summit View

At the View Facing North

Large Bedrock Face Approaching the Next View 

View Facing East

The Same View, Zoomed In

View Facing South

Small Pond Descending the Mountain on the Townsend Trail

Water Cascading Down the Dam of the Small Pond

Southfields Furnace at the End of the Townsend Trail

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