Breakneck Ridge is considered one of the best hiking trails in America. It has awesome views of the Hudson River, Newburgh-Beacon Bridge and West Point Academy. It also offers a robust and challenging hiking experience for seasoned hikers while still being accessible for new and causal hikers. The following Tips will help ensure a great hike for you and your hiking group!
1. If hiking during late spring, summer or early fall, start your hike early in the day. The first section of the Breakneck Ridge is the most intense section of the hike. You'll burn through a lot of energy & generate a lot of heat which can make it less pleasant if hiking this section during the heat of mid-day.
2. While hiking the first section you'll encounter some trickier climbing areas. If you feel uncomfortable with any of these climbs, look for the alternate paths which is usually marked with an X and / or the word alternate. All alternate marked paths will lead you back to the main trail within a few minutes so you will not miss out on the main trail.
3. Be sure to bring enough water and / or sport drinks especially during hot days. Consider brining water and add powdered electrolytes to ever other bottle of water you go through. Your great hike can quickly turn unpleant if you run out of water on a hot day.
4. You can ride this in running shoes but some of the climbing area can be tricky if you can not get a good grip. Good hiking boots will provide the desired transaction as well as keep your feet getting sore as you get further into the hike.
5. Bringing some light snacks will help keep your hike spirited and enjoyable.
6. Bring a camera to capture some priceless shots & memories!
7. Hiking alone can be great, but traveling with a good friend is safer & often more fun.
8. Be sure to bring a wellmarked map and compass with you. Being unsure of where you going and if your lost is never a good feeling.
9. Car parking in a dirt parking lot and on the side of the street is plentiful but if your coming from New York City, consider the Breakneck Ridge Metro North Train (Weekend and Holiday only) stop on the Hudson line.
10. If your looking to do a half day hike, consider the Breakneck Bypass loop which will leave you close to where you originally started.
11. If your more adventurous with good stamina, consider doing a full day hike by taking the Breakneck Ridge Trail to the Wilkinson Memorial trail. You'll be rewarded with a special view of the Hudson River and Newburgh-Beacon Bridge from a wooden observation deck as well as different angles of Bannerman Castle. Find a map, directions, a video tour and trial information here for the Breakneck Ridge and Wilkinson Memorial trains. This is an extended loop which will leave you close to were you started your hiking adventure.
12. Do not forget to sign in at the Trailhead log book!