How I Celebrated My 10th Wedding Anniversary (contd.): Hiking Around Lake Minnewaska, and Nearby Attractions

The setting? A magnificent day in New Paltz, New York, from where you can see the Shawangunk Mountain range (a section of the Appalachian Mountain range). The air is cool, the surrounding foliage is crisp, and Matthew and I have decided to hike the 3 mile loop around Lake Minnewaska.

For those of you who have not visited the Catskills area (you may be more familiar with Mohonk Mountain House), you’ll find an embarrassment of riches ?trail wise. I cannot express to you how much I love it here, and over the years I’ve witnessed the demand increase and Bed & Breakfast reservations fill up weeks in advance.

Lake Minnewaska has beautiful dark blue waters, and is dog friendly too. The three-odd mile trail around the Lake will take you past the famous Cliff House and Windmere among attractions. We had a breeze hiking the trail and it’s not strenuous at all, even at 33 weeks of pregnancy! Butterscotch enjoyed the walk immensely, although she was very tempted to get into the lake (we restrained her because we didn’t want to transport a soggy dog back). But as you can see from the pictures below, many dogs enjoyed playing fetch.

The parking at Lake Minnewaska’s main lot is $8, but you can avoid this charge if you park by one of the many odd trails, you can skip the fee.

Once you arrive at the parking lot, follow the well-marked trail to Lake Minnewaska, and enjoy the simple loop (offset by carriage trails).

Nearby Can’t Miss Attractions:

  • The Walkway over the Hudson is a pedestrian bridge that spans more than a mile long, and is over 200 feet above the Hudson River. Walk this on a beautiful day for breathtaking views!
  • Mohonk Mountain House: this unmistakeable Victorian castle is a fairy tale setting for weddings and festivities. It was built in 1869, and has 266 rooms. If you book, remember it’s an all-inclusive stay including a sumptuous buffet breakfast, lunch, dinner and tea.
  • The Mohonk Preserve, which is a State Park. Try the hike up to Bonticou Crag if you’re really into hiking.

Lake Minnewaska


Lake Minnewaska

Butterscotch and I enjoy a clear day!

Lake Minnewaska

Lake Minnewaska

Finding a cool, shady spot is tough work?

Lake Minnewaska

One of the dogs we saw at the park had a ball?literally.

Lake Minnewaska

A Bassett Hound finds true love?

Lake Minnewaska

Lilac trees are plentiful

Lake Minnewaska

Lake Minnewaska


A view from the bridge


This is truly an idyllic spot in the park, and you can picnic here, take plenty of bridal photos (or fun family photos), or simply chill.


Matt enjoys a great perching spot while I enjoy the view!


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