Garrison, NY (August 13, 2018)—The Open Space Institute (OSI) today announced the opening of the newly redesigned trail network and parking area at Manitou Point Preserve. Trail improvements include a redesigned trail network, newly blazed trails, the addition of a stone stream crossing, and the construction of a riverfront cantilevered bridge along the River trail. Additionally, the parking area for the preserve has been relocated. The new parking area is now accessible directly on Route 9D, just two miles north of the Bear Mountain Bridge, and will provide improved access to the four miles of trails on the 100-acre property.
The new parking lot accommodates more vehicles and is located away from local traffic. A new entrance to the preserve has been constructed next to the new parking lot, providing improved views of and access to the interior forest of the preserve.
“The redesign and management of the Manitou Point Preserve was a major undertaking and the Open Space Institute is glad to reopen the newly improved trails for families, residents, and visitors to the area,” said Kim Elliman, OSI president and CEO. “We are grateful to our partner, property owner Jon Stryker, for his sensitive touch in making these improvements.”
In improving the trail network, heightened attention was given to eliminating duplicate and confusing trail intersections and clarify existing trails with new trail blazes. OSI has also improved visitor navigation of the Manitou Point Preserve by adding a wayfinding kiosk and an updated trail map next to the new parking area.
Several trails on Manitou Point Preserve have been improved with the addition of stone step pathways. The stone steps were used to stabilize steep trail sections, improve the safety of stream crossings, and guide hikers over sections of muddy stream. The stones used were selected and relocated from the surrounding forest of the Manitou Point Preserve.
Additionally, a wooden ledge was constructed to provide a scenic view for hikers on the Manitou Point Preserve trail that runs along the Hudson River. All of these features have been constructed with natural, locally sourced, and sustainable materials.
About Manitou Point Preserve
Manitou Point is a scenic landscape steeped in history. Public hiking trails wind through densely wooded forests and alongside the Hudson River; while a tidal marsh offers refuge to a variety of waterfowl and songbirds.
Formerly known as Mystery Point, Manitou Point was owned by Edward Livingston, descendent of Philip Livingston, a signer of the Declaration of Independence.
Efforts to protect and improve this scenic landscape began in 1990 when OSI and Scenic Hudson entered into a partnership to create Manitou Point Nature Preserve. In June 2013, conservation-minded Jon Stryker purchased the 129-acre property along the Hudson River and placed it under a conservation easement to protect against any future development of the riverfront land.
Thanks to OSI, Scenic Hudson, the Hudson Highlands Land Trust, the New York New Jersey Trail Conference, and Stryker more than 100 acres of this property are open to the public.
The trails of the preserve are permanently protected and overseen by OSI, while volunteers from the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference work to maintain them.