"Do let me hear from you when you get among the Gunks. I hope you will find every thing there your heart can wish." - Thomas Cole
Minnewaska State Park Preserve is located on the beautiful and rugged Shawangunk Ridge in Southern New York. In 1875 Alfred Smiley bought 2,200 acres surrounding Coxing Pond and renamed it to what we know it as today, Lake Minnewaska. Two hotels were built. The Cliff House in 1879, and Wildmere in 1887. Cliff House was abandoned in 1972 due to maintenance costs and burned to the ground in 1978. Wildmere closed in 1979 and burned to the ground in 1986. New York State bought the property in 1987 and opened Minnewaska State Park Preserve in 1993. The area is known for its natural beauty including sky lakes, ice caves, waterfalls, mountain streams, and white conglomerate cliffs and ledges and an unusual diversity of plants and wildlife. Watch for rattlesnakes in warmer months! The area is also well known for its excellent rock climbing.
This route provides a tour of the some of most well known landmarks in the park including: Awosting Falls, Lake Minnewaska, Gertrudes Nose, Hamilton Point, Castle Point, Verkeerderkill Falls, Sam’s Point, Lake Awosting and Rainbow Falls. (Be sure to run the out and back down to Awosting Falls as part of the FKT.) You will run on both carriage roads and technical trails.
While there are a few free to park locations at Minnewaska, they require extra walking distance to get to the route. The most convenient parking is at the main entrance on the North-East side of the park and requires a $10 fee.