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Friday, March 27, 2015

Esopsus Bend Nature Preserve(Saugerties)

Went down to Saugerties down in the Hudson Valley after work today to visit 161 acre Esopsus Bend Nature Preserve.  The Preserve is owned by the Esopsus Creek Conservancy and is located at a dramatic bend in the creek, less than a mile away from the Hudson River.  It can be a bit tricky finding the trail head. You must drive through a housing development(Barclay Heights) off of Overbaugh Street, just south of the village, staying mostly west in the development until you arrive at a small dead end street named Shady Lane.  Just past the last house, a kiosk and gate mark the start of the trail.  A very short distance past the gate, the trail splits with an option to go right or left.  I stayed left, heading down into a deep gorge.
 Near the bottom of the gorge, the Esopsus Creek becomes easily visible and the trail splits again.  I stayed left on the red marked South Trail which immediately crosses a sturdy footbridge over a small stream.
 This small stream winds its way through the woods on its way to the Esopsus.  This picture clearly shows that winter and spring are still dueling it out.
 Nice views of the Esopsus Creek and waterfront homes on the west shore.
 Waterfront property.  The gazebo looks like it makes a nice place to relax and enjoy the creek.
 The South Trail climbs steeply through the woods away from the creek to the high point of the property.
 The meandering stream flowing quietly through the ravine.
 This land was former farmland, owned by the Schroeder family well over 40 years ago.  Hence, the blue marked trail is known as The Schroeder Trail and forms a loop on a wide old road.
 Many sections of the trail were sloppy, with a combination of mud, melting snow and ice.
 More waterfront property reflecting in the placid, partially frozen creek.
 A small yellow marked spur trail breaks away from the Schroeder Trail and provides a great view of aptly named Stony Point, a large rock formation at the bend in the creek.
 A bench provides a peaceful place to enjoy the woods and glimpses of the creek near the Village Beach.
 The trails here are part of the Hudson River Greenway Trail, a New York State agency helping to link cultural, historic sites and natural areas, as well as providing public access to the Hudson River.
Felt good to get out for about 2 miles of walking on yet another dreary day with temps in the low 40's and mostly cloudy conditions.

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