Sunday, February 25, 2024

Ridge Loop at Ramapo Reservation

Ramapo Valley County Reservation
Bergen Co.,
New Jersey

Hiking Trails:
Vista Spur Trail: Yellow/Black blaze
Vista Ridge Connector Trail: Black/Yellow blaze
Ridge Loop: Blue blaze
Reservoir Loop: Pink blaze
Brookside Trail: Black/Pink blaze
Vista Loop Trail: Yellow blaze

Total Time: 2:05 minutes
Estimated Distance: 4.4 Mile

Pros: Scenic lakes and nice area
Cons: Very busy at the beginning of hike
Hike Type: Loop
Level of Difficulty: Moderate

Google Maps of Parking:

The Ridge Loop trail is a result of the restructuring of the trails in Ramapo Valley County Reservation. It's a longer loop than the shorter Vista Loop, but goes deeper off the beaten path. The weather was very cold, but it was also bright and sunny. I parked at the main parking area, and took the Vista Spur past Scarlet Oak Pond, and up to the Vista Ridge Connector Trail and then the Ridge Loop. I then took the Reservoir Loop pas MacMillan Reservoir to the Brookside Trail, and back to the Ridge Trail which I took all the way up and down the ridge to the Vista Loop Trail to the view. I then went back to the Ridge Loop Trail back down and back to my car.

Map of the Route

Scarlet Oak Pond

Swan in Scarlet Oak Pond

MacMillan Reservoir

Last Bit of Snow Across MacMillan Reservoir

MacMillan Reservoir

Small Waterfall Along the Brookside Trail

Snow on the Ridge Loop Trail

View Near the Vista Loop and Ridge Loop Intersection

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Butter Hill Snow Loop

Storm King Mountain,
Storm King State Park
Orange Co.,
New York

Hiking Trails:
Butter Hill Trail: Orange blaze
Stillman Trail: Yelow blaze

Total Time: 1:00 minutes
Estimated Distance: 1.0 Mile

Pros: Very scenic area and good climb
Cons: None
Hike Type: Lollipop Loop
Level of  Difficulty: Difficult, especially in snow

Google Maps of Parking:

Storm King is a beautiful area, especially in the snow. It has snowed about a foot the previous week, so the area was covered with fresh snow except for the sheer rock area. I parked at the Butter Hill trailhead parking, and took the Butter Hill Trail up Butter Hill. After enjoying the great views I took the trail to the very top of Butter Hill, enjoying the 360 degree view, and then took the Stillman Trail down around to the gap. I then took the short cut back to the Butter Hill Trail and then went back to my car.

Map of the Route

Butter Hill from the Trailhead Parking

Ascending Butter Hill

Butter Hill Summit

Stillman Trail in the Fresh Snow