Coach Maxwell Alexander, personal trainer and author of the book “The Secrets of Natural Bodybuilding” on Amazon Kindle, shares his favorite Spring hikes in the Hudson Valley. Check out these hike descriptions below to find an activity that will bring you closer to nature while getting you one step closer to achieving your fitness goals! And don’t forget to let us know your favorite Spring hike by commenting on our Instagram pics!
Bodybuilding Coach/Fitness Model Maxwell Alexander
You can hike practically anywhere with Coach Maxwell Alexander on your side. A professional fitness coach, outdoors enthusiast, and wellness blogger, Max will help you create a plan to make sure you enjoy your time outside safely. If you’re looking for some ideas on where to go next time you want to head out on a hiking adventure, look no further.
Favorite Spring Hikes in the Hudson Valley
My first spring hike of 2017 is my very favorite. I think it’s safe to say that after living in New York City for 10 years and then moving to Dutchess County, NY (near Poughkeepsie), I’ve done hundreds of hikes in the area. But one thing I’ve never done a lot of is sitting on the couch.
And when I moved upstate, I started exploring local trails – and I was hooked. You could really see how well into the shape you were with just a 30-45 minute walk uphill. And as you climb higher on a trail there are so many beautiful things to see: wildflowers; trees; animals; rocky cliffs and overlooks; small creeks cascading down over rocks…it’s great plus it’s good for your physical and mental health!
Sleepy Hollow Lake State Park
As I mentioned, there’s no shortage of trails to explore here. One of my favorites is Sleepy Hollow Lake State Park. For me, it all starts with Sleepy Hollow Lake itself—the pristine lake is a visual delight that leaves me feeling refreshed every time I look out at it. But don’t let its name fool you—Sleepy Hollow is quite busy during its warm months; boaters and fisherman come from miles around to enjoy its pure waters. Personally, though, I like to start things off on land. And if you’re looking for an activity close to home but far away from your usual outdoor routine (aside from those downtown lunch walks), try hiking one of these three great trails. It may be quick—only about 1 mile each way—but it will put your body and mind into peak condition as we roll into summertime … then fall … then winter … spring again!
Pine Plains Fire Tower
I’m going to start my list of hiking destinations with one of my all-time favorites: Pine Plains Fire Tower. Located just outside of Pine Plains, NY, and a few miles from Route 9D, Pine Plains Fire Tower is a part of New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) forest preserve. At 1,871 feet, it provides spectacular views over much of eastern Dutchess County, including the Catskill Mountains and Connecticut’s Litchfield Hills.
Breakneck Ridge Trail Loop
Breakneck Ridge Trail is a great place to hike if you are seeking a trail that is well-marked and offers gorgeous scenery. The trail can get crowded at times, so it’s better for weekend hikers, but it is still very doable on weekdays (or take an early morning hike when other hikers are asleep). It’s also a pretty long loop, so don’t forget your water bottle! Also be sure to keep your eyes open for wildlife while hiking; we have encountered deer on our visits here. Have fun exploring!
Hiking Preserve at Storm King Art Center
What are some of your favorite things to do on a nice day? To me, one of my favorite things is to get outdoors, whether I’m hiking or just exploring my local surroundings. Storm King Art Center has three trails that lead you through nature and give you a chance to catch fresh air and some well-deserved R&R. Read on for information about how to experience these three delightful pathways!
Mt. Beacon Summit
Mt. Beacon is an easy-to-reach summit perfect for beginners. It’s located within a two hours drive from Manhattan and there are hiking trails that allow you to take one of three routes up to its peak. Its elevation at 1,217 feet allows for a beautiful view of surrounding valleys as well as New York City on a clear day from the Mt. Becon Fire Tower.