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Discover Long Island's Walking and Hiking Trails

Sports & Recreation

Long Island is filled with scores of scenic hiking and walking trails waiting to be explored. This guide will help you find some of the ...

Without a doubt, Long Island is one of the most beautiful places in the nation to live.
None of us is very far from a beach, park, pond, preserve, arboretum or sanctuary. Long Island is also filled with scores of scenic hiking and walking trails waiting to be explored. This guide will help you find some of the more popular ones, along with some that are lesser known. I’ve also added a few planned activities at some of our state parks that involve walking. So, in these economic times, if you like to walk and want to explore some of the scenic beauty of Long Island’s undeveloped preserves, parks and beaches, walking and hiking is a great way to spend a lot of free time without spending a lot of cash:

 

Arthur Kunz County Park
(Old Nissequogue River Park)

Landing Avenue
San Remo
Smithtown, NY

Arthur Kunz County Park is a little known 97-acre nature preserve in Smithtown. Although it is not easy to find, it is definitely worth the search. Popular with bird-watchers and hikers, the park includes part of the Greenbelt Trail. There are some spectacular views along the banks of the Nissequogue River.

For directions to Arthur Kunz County Park, click here.

 

Makamah Preserve
Fort Salonga Road
Fort Salonga, NY
(631) 854-4949

Makamah Preserve is a small nature preserve off 25A in Northport, just south of Crab Meadow. It's great for a short walk with the family and features several paths with woodland, thicket, marsh and streams. The preserve follows a ridge across and down to the tidal wetlands behind Crab Meadow. A Suffolk County resident pass is required. Contact Suffolk County Department of Parks at (631)854-4949.

For directions to Makamah Preserve, click here.

 

Stump Pond
Blydenburgh County Park

Veterans Memorial Highway
Hauppauge, NY
(631) 854-3713

The Stump Pond Trail is a long, scenic path in Blydenburgh County Park that begins at the Greenbelt and loops around the west and east sides of the pond. You can walk the 5-mile loop around Stump Pond using the Greenbelt and Stump Pond Trails. Along the Greenbelt Trail on the north side you can see the Blydenbugh/Weld house (on the National Register of Historic Places) and a grist mill. The west side of the trail has beautiful views of the pond, along with scenic brook crossings; and there’s a boardwalk along the west side.

For directions to Stump Pond, click here.

 

Sunken Meadow State Park
New York 25A

Fort Salonga, NY
(631) 269-4333 / (631) 269-5351

Venture past the crowds at Sunken Meadow to the east part of the park, past the boardwalk. There you will find one of the most beautiful spots on all of Long Island—a breathtaking peninsula at the mouth of the Nissequogue River.

For directions to Sunken Meadow State Park, click here.

 

The David Weld Sanctuary
Of The Nature Conservancy
Village of Nissequogue
Smithtown, New York

Walk or hike amid forest, woodland, swamp, marsh, coastal landmarks and geologic features including glacial erratics (boulders deposited after melted glacial ice). Black birch, red cedar, towering tulip and yellow poplar trees abound. Stop at the bluff along the Long Island Sound and carefully venture downhill onto the beach for a hike along the shoreline.

For directions to the David Weld Sanctuary, click here.

 

Mashomack Preserve
P.O. Box 850
Shelter Island, New York 11964
(631) 749-1001

Edged by 10 miles of coastline, Mashomack Preserve is a wildlife habitat of magnificent scenic beauty with its interlacing tidal creeks, woodlands and fields. Comprising nearly 2,100 acres (one-third of Shelter Island), Mashomack encompasses diverse habitats necessary for the survival of many species of plants and animals. The preserve features one of the densest populations of breeding ospreys on the east coast, and its extensive salt marshes are the breeding ground for the smallest links in the marine chain of life. In addition, Mashomack occasionally harbors nesting populations of the endangered piping plover and least tern, as well as a number of rare plants.
For directions to Mashomack Preserve, click here.

 

Caumsett State Park
25 Lloyd Harbor Road
Huntington, NY 11743
(631) 423-1770

Caumsett State Historic Park, situated on a scenic peninsula extending into Long Island Sound, offers beautiful gardens, miles of bridle paths, walking, jogging, hiking, biking, cross-country skiing and nature trails over acres of woodland, meadows, rock shoreline and salt marsh.

In 1921 Marshall Field III purchased 1750 acres of Lloyd Neck to create one large estate. He named the land after its Matinecock Indian name, Caumsett, which means "place by a sharp rock."

For directions to Caumsett State Park, click here.

 

Here are some planned nature/walking events at
Caumsett State Historic Park:

 

Adult Adventures: Spring Seasonal Stroll

Caumsett State Historic Park
25 Lloyd Harbor Road
Huntington, NY 11743

(631) 423-1770
Sunday, April 29, 2012
12:30 p.m. - 02:30 p.m.

On this short stroll (approx. 1.5 miles) you’ll savor nature's rebirth in spring, highlighting nesting birds. This outdoor program will take place rain or shine, so please dress appropriately.

Reservations are required:  Call (631) 423–1770 between 8 am and 4:30 pm.

These are all adult programs for ages 18 and up. There will be a fee of $4.00 per adult. An $8.00 parking fee must be paid during the fee collection season. If you are unable to keep your reservation, please call and cancel so others may have the opportunity to attend. Please be prompt. If others are waiting, your place may be given to them if you have not arrived when the program starts.

 

Birds With Botany For Beginners

Caumsett State Historic Park
25 Lloyd Harbor Road
Huntington, NY 11743
Sunday, May 6, 2012

9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

During this program, geared for novice adult birders, you’ll be searching for birds...no birds? You’ll learn about plants! Bring binoculars. (approximately 2 miles). Reservations are required: 631-423-1770

These are all adult programs for ages 18 and up. There will be a fee of $4.00 per adult. An $8.00 parking fee must be paid during the fee collection season. Advance reservations are required. To register, please call (631) 423 – 1770, between 8:00 am – 4:30 pm. If you are unable to keep your reservation, please call and cancel so others may have the opportunity to attend. Please be prompt. If others are waiting, your place may be given to them if you have not arrived when the program starts. Outdoor programs will take place rain or shine, so please dress appropriately.

 

Adult Adventures: Pot Luck - Just a Hike

Caumsett State Historic Park
25 Lloyd Harbor Road

Huntington, NY 11743
Sunday, May 13, 2012
9:30 a.m. 0 12:30 p.m.

There will be no formal nature discussion during this 6-mile, hilly, moderately paced hike. Participants will choose our route and when we stop for lunch. Bring lunch and water. Reservations are required: 631–423–1770.

These are all adult programs for ages 18 and up. There will be a fee of $4.00 per adult. An $8.00 parking fee must be paid during the fee collection season. Advance reservations are required. To register, please call (631) 423 – 1770, between 8:00 am – 4:30 pm. If you are unable to keep your reservation, please call and cancel so others may have the opportunity to attend. Please be prompt. If others are waiting, your place may be given to them if you have not arrived when the program starts. Outdoor programs will take place rain or shine, so please dress appropriately.

 

Here Are a Few State Park Events:

 

Adult Adventures: Custom Walking Sticks Workshop

Caleb Smith State Park Preserve
581 West Jericho Turnpike

Smithtown, NY 11787
(631) 265-1054
Saturday, May 05, 2012
9 a.m. – 12: p.m.

Enjoy a unique workshop at Caleb Smith State Park Preserve designing your own walking stick. Sticks, carving tools, wood burners and decorative materials will be provided. Learn beading and leather working techniques. Feel free to bring your own tools or something you might want to incorporate to make your walking stick one of a kind. After the program, take an unguided walk in the park (north side).

Fees for programs are $4.00 per adult, $3.00 per child and children under 3 are free. Reservations will be accepted two weeks prior to each program and may be made by calling the park office at (631) 265 – 1054.

 

I Love My Park Day: Hempstead Lake State Park

West Hempstead, NY 11552
(516) 766-1029 (Contact Bill Brown)

Saturday, May 05, 2012
9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Come to Hempstead Lake State Park to celebrate I Love My Park Day. I Love My Park Day is an exciting new statewide event to improve and enhance New York's parks and historic sites and bring visibility to the entire park system and its needs. Volunteers will clean the shoreline of the Northwest Pond. Pick sticks, garbage bags and gloves will all be supplies by NYS Parks to complete these volunteer efforts. All ages are welcome to participate!

Following at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers will clean the shoreline of the Northeast Pond and the area between Northeast Pond and Northwest Pond. All ages are welcome! Please bring a snack and water. Meeting location is the field on the East side of Eagle Avenue, just north of the Southern State Parkway.

Local sponsor: Lakewood Stables, REI

To Register Click Here.

 

Heckscher Spring Festival

Heckscher Parkway Field 1
East Islip, NY 11730

Saturday, April 28, 2012 until Sunday, April 29, 2012
11:00 a.m. – 4 p.m.
(631) 321-3510

Family oriented festival in celebration of Earth Day at the Heckscher State Park Spring Festival. Children's crafts, environmental displays, pony rides, nature walks, and more.
 

Wonderful Wetlands

Sweetbriar Nature Center

62 Eckernkamp Drive
Smithtown, NY
(631) 979-6344
Sunday, May 6, 2012
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
$5/person for members and scouts, $6/person all others

The geese, ducks, turtles, and frogs are all returning home from their winter trips or waking up from their long winter slumbers. Meet some of these animals and then take a walk along the Nissequogue River at Sweetbriar Nature Center to learn about this special natural place and the creatures that call it their home.

Photos

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