William R. Steinhaus Dutchess County Rail Trail

Trail Map

Description Suggest an Edit

The Dutchess Rail Trail is a local treasure in the Hudson Valley region of New York, and for good reason: the 13-mile trail runs through what seems like a perpetually green landscape of dense tree cover, linking Poughkeepsie at the Hudson River with smaller towns to its southeast. The entire length of the trail, including the filling in of two significant gaps, was completed in October 2013. Now, a massive bridge—entirely funded by the New York Department of Transportation—spans busy State Route 55, Old Manchester Road and Wappinger Creek in the town of LaGrange.

In the north, the Dutchess Rail Trail begins at a shared parking lot with the Walkway Over The Hudson off Parker Avenue/State Route 9G in Poughkeepsie. The stunning converted railroad trestle takes trail users over the Hudson River and leads directly to the Hudson Valley Rail Trail in Ulster County. All told, a trip on the three trails is a combined 18 miles one-way.

Traveling east from Poughkeepsie utilizes a newer section of the Dutchess Rail Trail, completed in September 2013. This portion passes a large golf course and Morgan Lake Park. The park was the former western terminus of the trail and is a popular spot for fishing. After Morgan Lake, the trail begins to turn south, running through the communities of Arlington and LaGrange, and skirting the eastern edge of Red Oak Mills. This section includes the colossal bridge over SR 55, but the entire length of the trail features a mixture of new bridges and converted railroad trestles and tunnels.

After winding through the towns of Wappinger and East Fishkill, the trail ends in the southeast just past the restored Hopewell Depot in Hopewell Junction. The museum that now occupies the former train station is well worth a visit, with a small photo gallery and plenty of information about the trail, local railroad history and area attractions.

Parking and Trail Access

To access the Dutchess Rail Trail, you can park at the following locations:

Overocker Road: If you're heading east on US 44/SR 55 from the Mid-Hudson Bridge, bear left where the routes split to remain on US 44. Proceed 0.6 mile to Peckham Road and turn right. Continue 0.2 mile to Overocker Road and turn right; parking is on the left.

If you're heading west on US 44 from the Taconic State Parkway, continue for 8.5 miles to Peckham Road and turn left. Continue 0.2 mile to Overocker Road and then turn right; parking is on the left.

Creek Road/Morgan Lake Park: From the intersection of Pendell Road and Creek Road (Dutchess Community College Campus) travel south 0.5 mile; parking is on the right by Morgan Lake.

Additional parking lots are available along the trail’s route at nearly every major road intersection.

Reviews

The best within 100 miles of NYC

   August, 2015 by andrew012651

This trail, combined with the majestic Walkway Over The Hudson and the Hudson Valley trail, make this 37 mile round trip the best rail trail within 100 miles of NYC. The 13 mile Dutchess trail that connects to the bridge is the template for all modern ...read more

Well maintained trail

   August, 2015 by bacchusboo

I did the 3 trails which combine to 18 miles in each direction. Yes, there are quite a few "in loving memory" benches on a particular stretch but it's really not a big deal. If the sponsorship helps maintain the trail, so be it. The Dutchess County Trail ...read more

Great Trail

   June, 2015 by kkthykntsmartin

It's a lovely, well maintained trail that connects to the Walkway over the Hudson and the Hudson Valley Rail Trail. I highly recommend it. It's a great, relaxing trail, paved all the way,with a couple small hills. I rode this section one day and the other ...read more