Spring Route Roundup: Come on Up, the Weather’s Fine!

Since I moved up here in late September, I’ve covered almost 3000 miles. It would have, and should have, been much more than that, but a combination of 27,000 miles of travel in February alone and terrible weather conspired to keep me off the bike more than I’d like. Oh yeah, and I crashed on my hand like an amateur.

I just wanted to round up all the routes I’ve published for your convenience, dear reader. After all the effort this blog entails, I better see all y’all riding past my house this summer.

Just one note before we begin: If you make it up here, try to be super polite to the locals (of whom I am now one). This isn’t 9W, and I want cyclists to be welcome up here!

Getting There

You can get from the Poughkeepsie train station to New Paltz using the route in this post.  You can also get over the ridge using this route. There are also other ways to go; if you’re interested look at the Peekamoose option below.

Longer Rides

First, a roundup of the 8 biggest climbs in Ulster County.  This one is worth a read if you want to tackle some serious rides.

Platte Clove: Amazing ride up one of the steepest climbs in the Catskills. I’ve also mapped this one from the Poughkeepsie train station, for your convenience.

Mountain Rest Road and Vista Maria: This is a double-crossing of the Shawangunk Ridge. Easily accessible from the Poughkeepsie train station. Super-tough climb up Vista Maria.

Mohonk Climb (Large)

Peekamoose really is the classic climb in my area. I recently posted on 3 options for riding over Peekamoose starting in New Paltz. Calling this “The Peekamoose Route” really doesn’t do it justice, because it also includes two climbs over the Shawangunk Ridge, including the climb with the biggest vertical gain in the southern Hudson Valley (South Gully Road).

This post also includes a route from the Poughkeepsie Metro North train station to New Paltz. Put them together and you will get the best 100- to 120-mile ride in the region, with 3 or 4 major climbs with >15% grades and huge descents (I’m talking about 10-15 mile continuous descents, by the way).

Here’s a 90-mile ride that includes Ski Run Road, which will take you over the absolute highest pass in the Catskills. For advanced riders only. Fat tires only. Death wish required.

The Ride of the Damned. Double crossing of the Hudson, first on the Kingston-Rhinecliff bridge, and then 50 miles later on the Route 23 bridge. I called it the “Ride of the Damned” strictly because of the weather. It is actually pretty easy. I’m not going to include pictures of this here because the weather was nasty, but I think it will be a beautiful ride in the summer. Another ride with Doug.

A fast and very easy route from the train station in Beacon to Poughkeepsie. A good route for when you want to take friends on a ride of decent length, but without all the usual associated challenges.

The all-time summer classic.  This is a route I’ve done many times, with friends and alone. Starts at the Brewster train station (actually Southeast Station), and ends in New Hamburg. Eighty to ninety miles of sheer riding joy. Lots of gravel and beautiful country.

Shorter routes

Here’s a fast and easy route that takes you into the foothills of the Catskills. It starts at my place, but you could start in Stone Ridge, Rosendale, or New Paltz.

A quick 50-mile route that takes in all the good stuff in the foothills, but is not particularly challenging.

Another short, easy, and scenic ride. Nice if you’re staying in the area, or you can incorporate this segment into a longer ride. Includes a ride over the Ashokan Reservoir, which has some really spectacular views of the Catskills, as you’ll see in this post. I mean, come on, look at this:

If you’re planning your own route out here, be sure to include the segment in this post.

Don’t Forget…

You can find all of these routes, and the ones I have yet to post, by clicking on Worth the Trip in the tags.

Guidance on riding Metro North with your bike, as well as my contact information, can be found on the About page. My contact information can also be found on the website below.

Finally: If you like this and find it useful, do me a favor and link to my blog. I don’t have any commercial objectives, I just want to get more people riding up here!




5 thoughts on “Spring Route Roundup: Come on Up, the Weather’s Fine!

  1. Pingback: If you live anywhere in the NYC area...

  2. Pingback: Riding the Catskills | turnings :: daniel berlinger

  3. Layne

    Great blog. I have a vacation home near Lackawaxen PA right across from Sullivan County NY. Try to get in the car and drive to a location in the Catskills and ride at least 3-4 times each summer. This info will be excellent in helping selecting routes for this summer. If I’m up in your area I’ll contact you ( you appear to be a much stronger rider than me, but maybe I can catch you on one of your recovery days).

    1. John Ferguson Post author


      Thanks, I’m glad you like the blog. It’s a lot of work!

      You are welcome to join us whenever you are available; I’m sure we’ll do at least 1, maybe even 2 gentleman’s rides a month. My contact information is on my professional website, please feel free to send me an e-mail.

  4. David Phillips

    Hi John! I’m also planning vacations for Catskills and just want to know Is there anything else which should I kept in mind? And I found site which is about trip planning Catskills and really helped a lot.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s