A great diversity of locations can be found in the outdoors of the Greater New York area. It is perhaps the region's key asset. From the granite caps of the Highlands, to the sharp cliffs of the Ridge and Valley Appalachians, to the deep cloves of the Catskills -- there are a few different flavors in a relatively small geographical footprint. Here are some selected highlights from each region, with more to come in the future:
New Jersey Highlands A Peaceful Ledge for Peakbaggers
Having no trails, Jennings Mountain is best known to peakbaggers looking for their next NJ1K entry. Topping out at 1,072 feet, it ranks #43 on that list and requires a true bushwhack. Lying a third of a mile southwest of the peak is an open ledge providing a surprisingly robust view of the Wyanokie sub-range.
New York Highlands The Scene from Jackie Mountain
A bushwhack up the clove between Jackie and Pound Swamp Mountains reveals a bird's eye perspective of interior Stony Point, NY. Also in view are Cheesecote Mountain, portions of the Ramapo Escarpment, and a look at the Northern Palisades (similar to the view from nearby Pyngyp Mountain).
Hudson Highlands The Many Faces of Boterberg
For many, Storm King continues to be the defining visual feature of the Hudson Highlands. Its massive size and conspicuous outline make it visible from many miles away. It also showcases itself from a wide variety of viewing angles.
Hudson Palisades Approaching the Edge of the Hook
The Bombay Hook requires hikers to explore off to the east of the Long Path. This puts them dangerously close to unguarded Palisades cliffs.
Green Pond Outlier Mini Megaliths
The Green Pond Outlier region is home to deposits of Schunemunk Conglomerate: a rock type that firmly resists the forces of erosion. It can cause the development of cliffs and unusual rock formations. On Bellvale Mountain, one such formation can be found along the Appalachian Trail. The Cat Rocks -- albeit smaller -- are similar to the Schunemunk Megaliths located 12 miles to the northeast.
Shawangunk Formation The Old Cliffs
The Millbrook cliffs were first climbed in 1935, leading to a rock climbing explosion at the Shawangunk Ridge. Today, Millbrook Mountain is far less popular than the Trapps, its immediate neighbor to the northeast. It provides a convenient route for hikers looking for a extended trip to Gertrude's Nose.
Catskills Dividing Giants
Lockwood Gap separates two of the highest peaks in the Catskills. To the east, Blackhead is a required winter peak for Catskill 3500 aspirants. To the west, Black Dome is a Catskill High Peak that stands above all others with the exception of Slide and Hunter.