Harlem Valley Rail Trail

New York

67 Reviews

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Harlem Valley Rail Trail Facts

States: New York
Counties: Columbia, Dutchess
Length: 23.8 miles
Trail end points: Anthony St (Hillsdale) and Furnace Bank Rd. (Wassaic)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6016782

Harlem Valley Rail Trail Description

Paralleling the Connecticut and Massachusetts borders, which lie only a few miles away, the Harlem Valley Rail Trail is a beautiful paved wooded pathway along the former New York & Harlem Railroad corridor that is accessible to users of many types and abilities.

Trail advocates ultimately envision a 46-mile trail from Wassaic in Dutchess County to Chatham in Columbia County. The trail is over halfway complete, following the closing of the 8-mile gap between Millerton and Under Mountain Road in 2020. For now, trail users can ride uninterrrupted from Wassaic to Taconic State Park.

Overall, the trail is bucolic and easygoing throughout. The asphalt pavement is well maintained and mostly flat. Scenery is generally wooded, though the path passes through a variety of landscapes, including wetlands, creeks, some open grasslands, tree farms, and farmland. The trail features numerous parking lots and access points, mileposts, signage, and benches.

With the completion of the newest section from Millerton to Under Mountain Road the 24.8-mile southern section begins just south of Wassaic Station, the northern terminus of the Metro-North Railroad Harlem Line, a commuter route. Because the Metro-North line ends here, the trail parallels the active rail line only a short distance. The northern endpoint of this trail section is just north of Taconic State Park at Orphan Farm Road in the hamlet of Copake Falls

Thirteen miles later, you'll find yourself on Orphan Farm Road in the hamlet of Copake Falls. There is a short (0.4-mile) portion where the trail—after passing another small parking lot—goes along an unpaved road before resuming. As it approaches Taconic State Park, it passes over the scenic Bash Bish Brook (Bash Bish Falls are about a mile east, over the Massachusetts border) before arriving at the entrance to the state park, which includes some public amenities. As the trail continues, the tree canopy opens up to reveal the Orphan Farm Meadow, flanked by mountains—including the Catskills—on two sides.

After a gap of 0.7 mile, the northern section of trail picks up at Black Grocery Road and continues north to Anthony Street in a residential area of Hillsdale. Currently this segment is only 1.5 miles long and is difficult to access. However, pleasant views along the way include vast fields of Christmas trees and other active farmland.

Parking and Trail Access

To reach the southern terminus at Wassaic Station from the intersection of NY 22 and NY 55 in Pawling, head north on NY 22, and go 6.8 miles. Keep left to remain on NY 22, and go 13.1 miles, past the hamlet of Wassaic. Following signs for the Metro-North commuter railroad, turn right into the Wassaic Station parking lot. Note that this is a paid parking lot. (Train travelers can also take the Metro-North Harlem Line from as far south as Manhattan to the last stop, Wassaic Station.)

To reach the north end of the southern segment, follow the directions above, and continue on NY 22 N another 11.2 miles to Millerton. Turn right onto US 44 E/Main St. The trail and parking lot are on the first block, within 500 feet, on your right.

To access the middle trail segment, follow the directions above to Millerton, and continue another 8.4 miles north on NY 22. Turn right onto Under Mountain Road. The trail and parking lot are 0.4 mile away, on your left.
To access the trail in Copake Falls, continue 5.9 miles north of Under Mountain Road on NY 22, and make a hard right onto Orphan Farm Road in Copake Falls. After 0.6 mile, the trail and parking lot are on your right.

To reach the trail at Black Grocery Road from NY 23/Main St. and NY 22 in Hillsdale, head south on NY 22. After 0.4 mile, make a sharp right onto Anthony St. and then an immediate left onto Underhill Road. Take Underhill 1.4 miles, then make a left onto Black Grocery Road. Go to the end of Black Grocery Road, where there is a parking area next to the trail.

To reach the northern terminus in Hillsdale from NY 23/Main St. and NY 22 in Hillsdale, head west 0.2 mile on NY 23/Main St., then turn left onto Anthony St. After 0.1 mile, at the intersection with White Hill Lane, go straight to continue on Anthony St. Ext. (do not go left to stay on Anthony St.). The trail is 100 feet up the hill on the left, in a residential area. Parking is available at a lumber store (312 White Hill Lane) by the rail-trail kiosk.

Harlem Valley Rail Trail Reviews

flat . smooth. gorgeous

I rode the southern half of this trail from Millerton to Wasaic the first week in October on a 75° afternoon. Beautiful ride on a beautiful day.

Serene and lovely

Rode the 13 miles from Orphan Farm Rd to Millerton and back. At the northern end, at Orphan Farm Rd is a large parking area adjacent to a small farm, a solar panel field and a glamping site. No one there at 8am that Saturday but half a dozen cars upon my return at 11. Likewise, I had the trail practically to myself until I neared Millerton and found it moderately traveled by later that morning. The asphalt trail was in very good condition and there are a few boardwalk sections as well, also in very good condition. The environs are beautiful with forested sections, farm fields, wetlands and vistas of the nearby hills. Not more than two miles from the north end is the Depot Deli, near the entrance to Taconic State Park, where all manner of beverages, ice cream and snacks can be found. Breakfast at Oakhurst Diner in Millerton is highly recommended. Clean public bathrooms can be found just behind the schoolhouse museum beside the trail after crossing the main street.

Harlem Trail Great Ride

This is a great trail but if starting from Hillsdale their is no signage to get from that part of the trail to the other part. It’s better to start at the Orphan Road trail head. However at Hillsdale there is a great brew pub. You will want to stay on the trail though and not walk about in the woods. There are rattlesnakes about and a very large on was warming itself on the path!

A beautiful trail that is a must !

This trail is long and beautiful In the middle is the Bike friendly town of Millerton , NY You can park in Millerton and go North or South There are a few good places to eat in town. Harney Tea company is there . Good coffee shop, very clean public bathrooms. Headed North about 12 miles you hit Copake NY . There is a NY State park with an excellent lake for a cooling dip. They have locker rooms ! Free to bike or walk in. There is a general store with cold drinks icecream. ice cream.


Nice Surprise

Was not expecting trail to be as nice as it was. Rode from southern trailhead to Millerton about 12 miles one way. Great views of farms / hills / streams/ wetlands all along a nicely paved trail. Planning to go back and complete the remaining 13 miles north of Millerton. And by the way thank you to Millerton for the excellent bathroom facilities!

Rod it in sections

I rode this over two separate weekends, Once from the Wassaic train station to Millerton, and once from Millerton to almost the end of the trail. Picking a favorite section is a really hard call, they both have their pluses. One of the things I really liked is the lack of level crossings making this more of a bikers trail than a walking trail with a lot of trail where you will only see bikes for a few miles. Pedestrians are great, with only bikes there is a lot less stress about passing. I think just about every level crossing has a portalet, even the ones without parking.

Wassaic didn't offer much in the way of attractions or close by food, Millerton on the other hand had plenty to offer and explore, there is even an actual bathroom on the trail in Millerton. While it would probably be fine to bike the town, I used the rack and walked it. Lots of interesting shops and food options in Millerton so it is worth stopping. Once you head north of Millerton you are back in open land with the occasional road crossings. There is a section where you ride over a large pond on a bridge that is nice.

Beautiful scenery along the route but some segments need maintenance

The Harlem Valley Trail from Taconic State Park to Wassaic (Metro North Station) spans 24 miles through beautiful farmland and marshy areas with Mountain ranges on both sides (Berkshire and Catskills). The entire trail is paved with asphalt. Unfortunately, there are older segments that sorely need maintenance, especially the roughly 4 mile stretch from Taconic State Park south. The trail is also narrow in spots making it uncomfortably close for bikes traveling in opposing directions. The trail does pass through several towns where you can find places to eat and shop.

This is a well kept trail that passes through some absolutely beautiful country. It was well worth the drive to try it out.

This is a well kept trail that passes through some absolutely beautiful country. It was well worth the drive to try it out.

Peaceful Trail but take extra water.

I drove the 70 miles from my home in Manhattan, not an easy drive both northbound and return given traffic. A friend suggested a parking place just South of Wassaic Station that is free all the time. Location is 14 Main Street, Wassaic, NY. I rode the 23 miles North to the point that the trail turns East along a public road. I turned around not because of riding on a public road, after all I ride in Manhattan, but because I would already have 50 miles before I got home. The trail is paved and mostly smooth. The multiple bridges are concrete slabs and a few are wooden. All have distinctive railings made of wood joined by steel cables. They compliment the natural trail very well. It is the CLEANEST trail that I’ve ever cycled, I saw only ONE discarded plastic bottle and it was down a ravine. Negatives: Pack an extra water bottle, I had two and rationed it carefully. I found NO place to buy a drink or snack. Take extra trail mix! There is only one intersection with heavy traffic. On the ones with very light traffic I found that the vehicles would stop and let you pass. Caution, just because the westbound car stopped that’s no guarantee that the eastbound vehicle will be as considerate. Few porta-potties; the ladies may not be pleased.

What can I say, this is a great trail for a bike ride. Great scenery, flat for the most part and wasn't a lot of people. Must do trail

What can I say, this is a great trail for a bike ride. Great scenery, flat for the most part and wasn't a lot of people. Must do trail

Worth Biking

We biked the newly completed Under Mountain Road to Millerton. We have biked the other completed sections in the past and this newly completed section does not disappoint . Very scenic and easy ride with our hybrid bikes.

Quiet farm land

I rode from Wassaic to Millerton. It’s a quiet ride mostly through farm land. A slight ascent there which made for an easy return. Free parking on the weekends at Wassaic. The town of Millerton made the ride worth it. A really cute town with places to eat and shops.

Bodacious New Section, 8 Miles

This is a bodacious new section, 8 mile, for trike riders, Catrike. Nice and smooth and flat, 1% grade. Shaded for nice cool ride. Also nice to ride a trail that other riders show proper manners when riding up on another rider, coming up on left. Yes a BODACIOUS TRAIL

Beautiful trai, absolutely magical.

Beautiful trai, absolutely magical.

Millerton to Taconic

We finished this part of trail on June 18. All paved. The newest section had interesting concrete panels for bridge decks. Good mix of open and wooded areas helpful on 80 degree day. Great Scenery. Very flat. Would suggest some added signage inside state park where road is used. Also at north end of park no signage to indicate how to get to Hillsdale section.

Great rail trail

We rode from Millerton to Wassaic and back last Saturday. All paved. Very scenic. Flat. Not much bike or walking traffic. Look forward to completing the other way to Hillsdale. Enough shady areas to make this a good trail later on in the summer.

Trail Extended north from Millerton!!

The trail is great! My husband & I rode it thus weekend and discovered that they have recently completed it north from Millerton so both sections are now connected!

one of the very best

I have been riding this trail for years. As of November, 2020, a wonderful new section has just been introduced, stretching from Millerton, NY to Under Mountain Road. This means that the trail now covers almost 24 miles one-way from Wassaic NY all the way to Orphan Farm Road near Copake. This is a classic, beautiful trail the runs through a valley, with so many nice sections: tunnels of trees looking out over farms, places to stop in Amenia and Millerton, a section that runs right to the entrance of Taconic State Park, several raised ridges with views of fields on both sides. The newest area, from Millerton to Under Mountain Road, is perhaps the nicest of all, as it runs through an area with views of the Taconic Berkshires and runs over multiple ponds via the old train bridges (now updated for bicycles). I’ve been on rail trails all over the northeast, this is one of the very best.

Great trail

This was my first time on this trail and it is worth the trip. It is well maintained with a few bumps here and there but nothing to worry about. It is “flat”, but there is an incline to it. The trail from the southern end in Wassaic to Millerton is 11.5 miles and the trail rises 250 feet. So that’s about a .5% incline which is nothing over a short ride but you do feel it a bit over 11 miles. Well, at least my 61 year old legs felt it a bit. Maybe 2/3rds of the trail is under a tree canopy which shades you from the sun on a hot day and provides some blockage on windy days. If I counted correctly, there are 10 road crossings, which works to less than one per mile. And most of the roads are rural roads so you don’t have to stop too frequently. Though the driver of the one car I encountered didn’t even let up in the gas, let only brake or stop. The restrooms in Millerton are closed, I assume due to COVID. There are two porta potties along the trail. One minor negative is there aren’t too many benches along the way if you want to stop, rest, and enjoy the scenery. And the scenery is nice, maybe not the nicest I’ve seen from a trail, but it certainly is a very pleasant ride. For a beautiful 85 degree August Saturday, there weren’t too many people on the trail, though there were other riders. And everyone seemed friendly. I’m not positive if I was suppose to park where I did - dirt parking lot next to the trail in Millerton - but my car was neither towed nor ticketed when I got back so I guess it was okay. There’s parking at the southern end plus a few smaller lots along the way. There are no services along the way but Millerton has restaurants and shops by the trail. And I believe there’s a place to rent bikes as well. They are extending the trail another 8 miles or so north from Millerton with an expected completion date of October, 2020. So once complete, you’ll be able to do a 40 mile round trip.

An easy ride on a nice trail

This was my first time on this trail and it is worth the trip. It is well maintained with a few bumps here and there but nothing to worry about. It is “flat”, but there is an incline to it. The trail from the southern end in Wassaic to Millerton is 11.5 miles and the trail rises 250 feet. So that’s about a .5% incline which is nothing over a short ride but you do feel it a bit over 11 miles. Well, at least my 61 year old legs felt it a bit. Maybe 2/3rds of the trail is under a tree canopy which shades you from the sun on a hot day and provides some blockage on windy days. If I counted correctly, there are 10 road crossings, which works out to less than one per mile. And most of the roads are rural roads so you don’t have to stop too frequently. Though the driver of the one car I encountered didn’t even let up in the gas, let only brake or stop. The restrooms in Millerton are closed, I assume due to COVID. There are two porta potties along the trail. One minor negative is there aren’t too many benches along the way if you want to stop, rest, and enjoy the scenery. And the scenery is nice, maybe not the nicest I’ve seen from a trail, but it certainly is a very pleasant ride. For a beautiful 85 degree August Saturday, there weren’t too many people on the trail, though there were other riders. And everyone seemed friendly. I’m not positive if I was suppose to park where I did - dirt parking lot next to the trail in Millerton - but my car was neither towed nor ticketed when I got back so I guess it was okay. There’s parking at the southern end plus a few smaller lots along the way. There are no services along the way but Millerton has restaurants and shops by the trail. And I believe there’s a place to rent bikes as well. They are extending the trail another 8 miles or so north from Millerton with an expected completion date of October, 2020. So once complete, you’ll be able to do a 40 mile round trip.

Such a good ride! We found this trail today and it was absolutely amazing, highly reccomend.

Such a good ride! We found this trail today and it was absolutely amazing, highly reccomend.

Beautiful trail

A beautiful trail, level riding and scenic. Great rewards at the end, places to stop , eat and shop. Can park and lock your bike at trails end. Look forward to it’s completion.

beautiful trail

Very little elevation change. New section south from Wassaic station is very nicely done, but disappointingly short. Beautiful ride north from the station to Millerton.

New sections open or nearly open

Wow! Once open, the Undermountain Road to Millerton gap is going to be spectacular. I note that the northernmost section going south from Undermountain Road to Boston Corners Road, about one mile long, is now open and beautiful. The next two miles going south, to White Horse Crossing Road, includes a gorgeous mile long raised section going through a beautiful wetland. Parts, including that section, are currently paved but construction is ongoing. Later this season this will be the place to ride!!


Beautiful rail trail.

trail ends in Millerton

Beautiful and no crowded from Amenia to Milerton - 8 plus miles from the parking lot indicated on the map. Trail ends in Millerton - I did not ride along rite 22 to pick up the rail trail again for the final five r so miles, as it is crazy town to ride on Route 22. Overall, a pleasant there and back (I went past the parking lot to make a twenty mile ride). I hope that the trail does get connected and soon.

Great biking / walking trail

Completely paved and in great condition from Wassaic to Millerton. Tree covered and shaded most of the way. Passing farmland, ponds, horses, sheep, apple farms. Only a few roads you pass over. One main road (not very busy at all) and a few smaller country roads (saw no cars). They are currently extending it farther North of Millerton but for now, the ride firm Waasaic to Millerton and back I believe is just about 20 miles.


Thanks! to the HVRT for resurfacing some of the trail that the tree roots had pushed up pavement. It was nice to be able to ride without having your fillings about ready to come out Thanks HVRT

A beautiful trail

We biked south to north from Wassaic to Millertown(?)....a great way to spend the 4th of July on an absolutely beautiful trail having lunch in the diner then turning around and going back...21 miles felt like 5....

Biking Rails to Trails in Massachusetts from Missouri

We were told once we arrived on the trail, that it was not complete. We discovered that we had to share a gravel road that was not on the rail portion. The trail to the North was in process of being worked on and not at all passable. Some notice needs to be posted saying Trail is under construction or sharing roads with cars is noted. The Map looks Identical to the Cape Cod trail which was excellent .....no indication that the Harlem trail was not complete


From Wassaic to Copake, free parking in Wassaic train lot on weekends. Goes through a few small towns with bike shops including one in Copake. Lots of places to eat in the towns, some country roads tie the rail trails together, a few hills but nothing brutal, beautiful lake, plains, and frams views, and if you don't mind a small hike, check out Bash Bish falls in copake, worth the hike.

Wassaic Station to Orphan Farm Road

I rode the trail last week starting at the Wassaic Metro-North station (free parking only on weekends and holidays) and ending at Orphan Farm Road. I did continue to Hillsdale but as there was no signage to indicate how to find the newest section from Hillsdale to Black Grocery road, I did it on road.
All-in-all, both of the main completed sections are in very good shape, fine for road bikes. For the on road gap I took Route 22 going north (flatter but fairly busy with high-speed traffic) and the Under Mountain Road- Rudd Pond Road Route (hillier but much less traffic with swimming available at Taconic State Park- Rudd Pond) on my return. The roads were in good shape either way.
Bash Bish Falls State Park off the northern section is well worth the minor detour. Stay on the road to the falls parking lot and in a 1/4 mile (up hill) you're in Massachusetts!

From Millerton to Coleman Station

Absolutely beautiful scenery. Asphalt path was in great condition. People on the trail were friendly. Maps were available in Millerton as well as a clean porta potty. Many sections were shaded to provide some relief from the heat! Millerton is a small, quaint village with plenty of nice shops to check out.

Perfection !

I have been riding this trail several times each year and am never disappointed. From the Wassaic train station in Amenia to Millerton is 10 miles of farmland and woodland with spectacular views. Beautifully maintained and lightly traveled it attracts courteous hikers and bikers. Millerton has a couple of excellent places to grab a snack and on Saturday mornings there is a small farmer's market. I try other trails for variety but return to the HVT to recharge.

Hillsdale section now paved and open!

I rode the newest 1.5 mile section from Anthony Street in Hillsdale to the Black Grocery Road trail head across the town line in Copake. It's a pleasant wooded section and a deer even crossed my path notwithstanding how close the trail runs to a residential section of Hillsdale. I then connected to the Orphan Farms Road to Undermountain Road section via a 3.3 mile detour, mostly on lightly traveled local roads with some gentle hills, to the Orphan Farms trailhead. Apparently this detour will be needed for some time since the plans for crossing both the Roe Jan Creek (near the Black Grocery trailhead) and NY Route 22, on the immediate opposite shore of the creek, have not yet been determined.


Rode this trail 5/27/17 from Amenia to Millerton and back. Trail is paved, in great shape, extremely well maintained, beautiful views alongside farms and many nice views of the surrounding hills. Places to stop for lunch at both Amenia and Millerton. We were going to try to do the on-road detour to get from Millerton to the Northern section near Copake that's currently paved, but we decided to drive it first...and found that it's not flat (!), has a bunch of rolling hills especially in the first several miles. For us that would have been difficult on our trail bikes...more suitable for road bikes. I long for the day when the two finished parts are connected! Can't come soon enough. Love this trail! Kudos to all.

Nice! As every trail should be.

I travel far and wide to get to almost any bike trail, paved or not. This one is asphalt and pretty nice. Starting in Millerton near the refurbished rail station, I went south to Wassaic, end of the line where a noisy, fuel-smelling, working train station is the final stop. (I think there are bathrooms inside.) It is kind of a nice juxtaposition from the trail and village starting point. As described above, the rail trail goes through lovely rural county. A few root-bumps here and there, but nothing terrible. When the northern section has enough miles connected to make it worth my hour+ drive, I will give another review.

Millerton is a lovely village. If you like tea, check out Harney's tea shop, a small cafe, gift shop and tasting room.

New construction in Copake Falls

The trail is being expanded and paved for approximately 1.2 miles north from Copake Falls to Orphan Farms Road. It deviates a bit off the old ROW as it curves around a field.

Short or long ride options

My friend and I used the rail trail as part of a 60-mile ride from the Wassaic train station to Bash Bish Falls and back. Cue sheets can be found online for this ride (Harlem Valley Rail to Trail to Falls). The scenery is beautiful along the way. The HVRT afforded a nice rest (flat surface), compared to the road portion of our trip, which was quite hilly. There are no markings in the northern section (Copake Falls) for where the trail picks up after the first break. You have to take a right and ride on a gravel road for approximately one-quarter mile. The HVRT picks up on the left, right before a hill. (Note: the hilltop provides a beautiful vista). Plenty of parking is available and free at the train station on the weekend.

Great ride, great area

We rode this trail twice. Once out of Copake Lake for a few miles south before bad weather turned us around and again north from Wassaic to Millerton and back. It's a very scenic trail, flat with paved pathways. We often camp at Taghanic State Park and so the towns in the area are known to us. Millerton is a great place to stop, walk around and have a meal or snack before heading back. We did this on a brisk fall day during the week and felt like we had the trail to ourselves. Really a nice ride. Highly recommended. Can't wait till the northern extension is completed.


I walked this trail today from Amenia to Millerton and back. I started with a latte at Cozy Corner Café & Tap Room, Inc., and ended back there for a Cozy Corner Burger. A perfect start and end. The walk was gorgeous, but being just about the only person not on a bike, the bugs were all on me - take bug spray. I bought some in Millerton at (I think) Terni's, for the walk back, and it worked a treat. I'm not a flowers or birds person but the range of color and sound was incredible. Definitely worth the trip.

A Perfect Trial

My wife and I drove 100 miles to ride this trail this August 2013 weekend, and it was worth it. The only thing that would have made it better would be if it was longer. We parked at the Wassaic station and rode north. The path is smooth and flat, well shaded and well maintained. THe trail is bordered by wildflowers, streams and ponds, and you can see horses, llama, chipmunks, and birds. There are vistas of corn fields with hills in the distance, picturesque red barns, a stretch of trail blasted through stone. My wife wanted to stop every two minutes to photograph the scenery. At Millerton there are lots of good places to eat and interesting shops to check out. I was sorry when we reached Wassaic again and the ride was over.

Nice, flat, beautiful!

Starting from the Wassaic train station, where the trail begins, is a nice flat ride. Can ride all the way to Millerton. In Millerton there are restaurants, a diner, and an ice cream shop. There are a couple of antique shops, a bike shop, and an old fashion department store, Sapersteins. A family can make an entire day of it! The entire ride is 23 miles round trip. Enjoy!

Bucolic Gem

My husband and I parked in Amenia at the Rail Trail lot and biked 10 miles up to Millerton. With foliage full, only occasional views of countryside showed. But the trail was also a cool tunnel on a 90-degree day. Bugs are plentiful, so use repellent. Three flew in my eye.

Near Millerton in the middle of the woods is a series of three small houses, rustic, gate-size, and elegant facaded, which surround a small pen with long-horn bulls and a llama. A river rushes past on the far side. Charming and unexpected.

Millerton is a very appealing town, with the original Saperstein's clothing store carrying styles from the '50s, it seems, as well as New Age eateries and artsy shops.

We dallied about 15 minutes, then rode back to our car in Amenia. Whole trip took 1:40.

Then we drove up to Bash Bish Falls in Copake, took a dip along the trail to cool off, and headed home to CT, stopping at McEnroe's organic farm (on a hill on the right, between Millerton and Amenia) for egg salad, strawberries and Harney's apple juice. Yum.

Fabulous day trip.

Great Trail

The trail as it exists is in 2 sections, separated by by about 8 miles. The southern section begins at the Wassaic metro north train station, and goes north to Millerton, nearly 11 miles away. The trail is paved, in relatively good condition, and goes through some great scenery with a number of views of the Harlem Valley, and some interesting rock cuts. Millerton is a great town for a rest, containing several good restaurants with a varied price range.

The northern section is around 4 miles long, and is also paved, except for one small version, of about 0.25 mile, onto a hard packed gravel road, best for ATB's, but is probably also fine for road bikes. The current northern end, is at Copake Falls at Taconic State Park. There is a general store here next to the trail, in the old freight building.

When the 2 sections are finally joined, this will truly be a 5-star trail. This is doubly true when the extension north to Chatham is completely purchased and finished.

Highly recommended!

Beautiful Ride

We (two seniors) rode this on September 7. The trail is in excellent shape and there's a lot to see. Fall colors were just beginning to come out. Deer getting a bit to eat in the corn fields along the trail. Streams were all running and gurgling. Geese were stopping in the ponds along the way as they were starting to head south. A conservation area along the trail had alpaca and swans (and maybe more animals that we didn't get to see). Lots of benches for resting. Had a nice lunch at a tea shop in the end of the trail across from the train depot. We thought the trail was 14+ miles, based on the traillink info, but the main section is only about 21...a little disappointing. But a great ride, nonetheless.

spectacular trail

I rode up to Wassaic by Metro North and rode north from the train station today. This is the finest trail I've found yet, the paved surface gave a super ride. Magnificent does not begin to describe the time you will have doing what ever activity you enjoy, mine is biking! I rode from Wassaic to Millerton and if I had the time I would have done the round trip several times! I'll be returning soon!

Heading to the North Section of the Trail- Three days of biking

Patty and I traveled about 50 miles in three days of biking on the trail. We started out at Rudd Pond Campgrounds. We parked our car in lot. Great place to start. We then headed north on Under Mountain road for about 7 miles. Just wanted everyone to know its a quiet country road, beautiful scenery ,but its has some steep hills about even going north and south. But well worth the trip. We then picked up the paved section of the trail and headed to Bish Bash Falls. If you are looking for a great day trip I highly advise this one. There is a country store and Bicycle Shop at the end of the trail. Total trip about 24 miles. Then the next day we headed south on the trail from Sharon Road in Millerton. We went the south about 9 miles to Amenia, stopped in this real nice town and headed back. The path is in great shape and if you are a novice biker take this trip. You can take your bikes on the train from the city ,get off at Wassic and ride north on the trail to Millerton. Millerton had all the amenities you will require.The total ride is 22 miles from the train station. Another day we just jumped on the trail about 4 miles south of Millerton. Headed north to Millerton and traveled some quiet country roads. Three days of biking in a great area.

Nice destination trail

My husband and I rode this trail for the first time this past weekend. We started at the train station in Wassaic and rode to Millerton. It was a easy ride. Trail is paved and in great condition. Portable toilets were available at most of the parking areas. The village of Millerton is a charming and a great rest stop before heading back to Wassaic.

Southern Part of the Trail- June 5th 2010

Patty & I have been on this section three times in the last two years. Our ride this past weekend was good. The trail seems to have been work on over the last year. This paved trail was in great condition,no holes or roots growing this time. The Millerton to Amenia ride takes about 1 hour each way. If you have not been on this section its a real nice ride. Lots of wildlife to see. We have been on the northern section and its only 4.5 miles long, short trip but worth it.When in Millerton there are some nice restaurants where you can have lunch.If you choose to stay over have dinner at the Woodlands in Lakeville CT. Wonderful place, be sure to make reservations.

Sections 1, 2 & 3 are open

While the trail description indicates that only sections 2 & 3 are open, the Southern-most segment from Wassiac to Amenia is indeed complete, bringing the Dutchess section to a total of around 11 miles. There is ample parking at Wassiac station (free on weekends, metered during the week).

Very nice...but getting bumpy (also Collinsville, CT and Cheshire, CT)

My wife and I traveled this trail over Labor Day weekend (2009). We've been on it 4-5 times before over the past few years and really like the scenery. She bikes, I roller blade. We do the Amenia, NY north section...maybe a 6-8 mile stretch.

This last time I most definitely noted tree-root bumps on the trail at almost every section...not to say they are constant...just that they make their presence known quite often now.

I throw this out there for all bladers because you really have to be alert to the bumps. Any blader knows full well what these bumps can do to your nice afternoon...not to mention your body.

As an aside, we also did the Collinsville (CT) and Cheshire (CT) trails that same weekend. Collinsville is almost useless now for roller blading for the same reason...the tree-root bumps there are downright treacherous and unavoidable. MAJOR work needs to be done on this trail. Re Cheshire...it was definitely the best of the 3 trails, but also had some root bumps (plus, there are a few sections where the paving is very rough...again, roller bladers will notice this, bikers will not).

There you have it...a few up-to-date observations.

Wassaic to the Berkshires on August 18, 2009

Several years ago, I had looked at this trail as a possible route to Massachusetts, the eastern part of which my grandparents live in. However, I didn't much want to attempt to bike over the Berkshires. This summer, my family and I went for a few days to a resort in Lee, Mass (north of Great Barrington,) so I decided to try this trail to get to it. Last Tuesday, I took the Metro-North to Wassaic Station. The trail is on the opposite side of the railroad track from the station platform. I biked north along the trail, reading the signs along the way, to Millerton. At Millerton, a quaint little town, the trail ends with the old station (now a real-estate office) with a sign saying "Millerton" on it across the street. Make a left on the street (Rt 44) and a right on Rt 22. Bike on Rt 22 through some farms (I went to the side, to a cow pen, and a cow licked my hand!) for 8 miles until you hit Undermountain Rd. You shouldn't miss it - although it is a small street and you're biking downhill, there is a sign telling you to make a right for the trail. Bike about 2,000 feet, and make a left onto the trail. The trail continues for 4 miles (including a 0.4-mile section on a dirt road) before ending at Copake Falls. On your left is what clearly was the railroad station, with some track built in, as well (it is now called the "Depot Store.") Across the street is a bike shop, which happens to be closed on Tuesdays! How convenient! Thus ends the trail.

As far as progress on the trail goes, a poster on some of the trailside bulletin boards said that construction on the section between Millerton and Underhill Rd has been delayed due to the fact that the railroad bed is now home to the Bog Turtle, an endangered species. Also, much of the railbed has been washed out. They are considering making part of the trail go along existing roads. As for the 22-mile section of the trail continuing north to Hillsdale and Chatham, apparently 14 miles of it have been acquired by the HRVTA.

After they complete the missing sections, it would make an even greater trip if they extend the trail southwards along the existing railroad to Brewster. Then, you would be able to ride all the way from Van Cortlandt Park in New York City via the old Putnam Railroad (on this website as the North County Trail and South County trail) to near Brewster, and then continue on this trail, all 120 miles to Chatham, almost completely off-road! Even as is now, you can make the ride, although you would have to take the Metro-North from Brewster to Wassaic.

If you want to continue northwards (under 20 miles more) to the Berkshires, and the many resorts and scenery there, make a left on the street at the end of the trail in Copake Falls. Go down the hill, make a right at the bottom, and make another right on Rt 22. Keep going on this until you hit Yonderview Rd. Make a right on it, ride to the end of the street, and make another right on Rt 23. Keep along 23, up the long hill, entering Massachusetts, and keep riding on it until Great Barrington. There are buses with bike racks that run from there to the rest of the Berkshires. Website for the bus company: http://www.berkshirerta.com. Note that these buses don't run on Sundays.

I highly recommend this trip for its great scenery, quaint little towns, and great riding. And I've biked enough in my life that my recommendation should mean something!

As always, you are free to contact me with any questions or comments at barukh94-biking@yahoo.com

Barukh Rohde


Thank you folks for submitting the pictures. I sure wish it wasn't December, raining, and 40 degrees.

great fun

I have been using the trail two to three times a year for years now. Begining in spring of 2005 I've taken a group of Cub Scouts out for our annual bike hike. Great for all ages and abilities. Be sure to make Millerton the half way point and grab some lunch. The Millerton station is a wonderful building to view. The gem of the trail is the restored station on the east side that is now a private residence. Take a second to admire the workmanship. The trail will only get better as it expands north. A southern trail south to Dover or even Pawling (along the existing railbed) would be out of this world.

Real nice asphalt trail

"Started at Millerton and rode down to Metro North Sta. at Wassaic and returned. Very level trail and in great shape in spite of recent heavy rains, and crews are out mowing. Started the Section 5 at the south and rode up to Copeck falls and returned. Lots of birds and wild life. Lots of places to rest and signs about the history of the area. This will be a better ride when section 4 gets done. "

great trail

"I rode this trail on 10/19/05 .I rode all open sections,the scenery was wonderful(especially sections 2,3,5),very well maintained and very few people on the trail.Whenever section 4 is opened,this trail will be a home run. "

Section I done

Section 1 is complete and open to the public. It starts right at the Wassaic railroad station which is great because there is plenty of parking there and it's free on weekends. The parking lot in Amenia is always full on weekends. You can park at Wassaic and go all the way to Millerton on the trail which is a nice 10+ mile ride.

Construction update

The new section south of Amenia is almost finished. I rode the new section and it was 2.1 miles one way. It's a great new addition to the trail.

At last: Construction has begun

Construction has finally begun on section 1 from Wassaic to Amenia. This will add about three miles to the 8.2 miles that are open from Amenia to Millertown.

Excellent trail

"The Harlem Valley Rail Trail is a very nicely maintained and laid out trail with light traffic on the beutiful summer weekend I was there. It will be awesome when the whole thing is finished (2 separate parts now) but the nearby farm roads aren't bad. Avoid NY Route 22, though, near Millerton."

Great Riding!

"I have been riding on this trail for several years and it continues to be my favorite! There's great scenery and plentiful wildlife (if you're quiet and watchful enough!). You can extend the Amenia to Millerton ride by going north on some lovely, low rolling back roads past Rudd Pond for a total of about 7-8 miles before coming to the trail head for the northern-most (currently) paved section that extends another 4 miles up to Copake Falls. This part of the traill does have one very short section of dirt road, but is well worth the ride!"

Nice trail; great for tourers

I was on the short 8-mile paved section from Millterton to Amenia and just a note to bicycle tourers that this is a great rail-trail for tourists as it is paved for loaded touring bikes that offers a nice scenic break from car traveled roads and is right off the Adventure Cycling route that runs from Maine to Florida.

The trail is very nicely paved and seems fairly new. There is also a section north of Amenia that parallels NY 22. Check out the website for updated info on the completion. It is slated to go all the way to Hillsdale in the next 3/4 years.

Port-o-johns are placed at the beginning and end and I think one place in between. There is a trail map at each end but no free water sources that I saw. There is a bikeshop in Millerton right by the trailhead but it appeared closed when we went by.

A beautiful day

"I had a great experience on this trail. The weather was gorgeous and the trail was quiet. I loved seeing the horses, cows, sheep and chickens. The remodeled station house looks nice. I am looking forward to this trail expanding. I definitely could have ridden longer."

Splendid Trail Surface & Gorgeous Views

"If a very well maintained paved trail surface of moderate length is your favorite cup of tea, by no means should you miss visiting the Harlem Valley Rail Trail. Although weather conditions were much less than perfect on the day of my visit, and the closest trailhead to my home required a 2-hour drive to reach, I had an extremely enjoyable experience bicycling Sections 2, 3, and 5 (the only ones open at the time of my visit).

To complete Sections 2 & 3, I parked in the designated trail users’ lot on Mechanic Street in Amenia. The lot is quite small and my understanding is that on weekends it fills quickly. If the lot should be full when you arrive, parking is permitted at the Amenia Town Hall/Firehouse parking lot, which is about 2/10 mile west of the trailhead. Designated trail user parking for Sections 2 & 3 is also available at Coleman Station. Parking in Millerton is ad hoc on local streets and in municipal parking lots.

I encountered surface conditions along Sections 2 & 3 that I would classify as excellent for bicyclists and walkers, but less than perfect for in-line skaters due to many blisters and cracks in the asphalt surface. There are several local street crossings but all are very well marked with painted crosswalks and caution signs. There is one crossing of a high-speed highway, that of Route 343; use extreme caution there. Views along this portion of the trail encompass portions of the Berkshire Mountains, sprawling farmlands, and dense woods. Food & beverages are available very close to both the Amenia and Millerton trailheads. Portable rest rooms are stationed at the Amenia and Coleman Station trailheads.

To complete Section 5, I parked in the designated trail users’ lot on Undermountain Road in Ancram (about a 20-minute drive north of Amenia on Route 22). There was no portable toilet in this parking area. Parking for Section 5 is also available at Taconic State Park in Copake Falls.

Trail surface conditions along the paved segment of Section 5 (a very short portion of this route uses a limited access dirt road) were better than those along Sections 2 & 3. If in-line skating is your passion, Section 5 is the place for you! As with Sections 2 & 3, views here too included the distant Berkshire Mountains, sprawling farmlands, and dense woods. Section 5 does not pass through any town centers, but a small privately owned snack bar is located adjacent to the trailhead in Copake Falls. There are no public street crossings along Section 5 except the limited access dirt road mentioned above.

In summary, a visit to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail is well worth a drive from afar at least once if not several times."

Birch trees and vistas

"Birch and aspen trees, vistas, and birds and rabbits criss crossing the trail make HVRT one of the more beautiful trails I have been on. Terminus at Taconic State Park for camping and 1.5 mile hike to Bash Bish Falls. Less than 6 miles to Falcon Ridge Folk Festival in Hillsdale (late July)."

One of the best

Both sections [north & south] are beautiful. Millerton is a cute place to stop for lunch. The connecting back roads quite hilly.

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