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Spring Fever: Five Catskill Hikes You Won't Want to Miss

Updated: Mar 30, 2023

Spring has (almost!) sprung, which means it's time to lace up your boots and hit the trails! The Catskill Mountains offer some of the most breathtaking and awe-inspiring hikes in the Northeast. From cascading waterfalls to panoramic vistas, these trails have something for everyone. Whether you're a seasoned hiker or just starting out, the Catskills provide an unforgettable adventure. So grab your backpack, strap on your hiking shoes, and let's explore the top five hikes in the Catskill Mountains that will leave you breathless and exhilarated!

Kaaterskill Falls

22 miles from Bugg Haus

Kaaterskill Falls is a two-tiered waterfall that is one of the most popular hiking destinations in the Catskills. The trail to the falls is just under two miles round trip and is considered moderate to difficult due to the steep incline. Along the way, hikers will pass through a picturesque forest and over several streams before arriving at the falls. The view from the base of the falls is breathtaking and definitely worth the hike, but it's wise to strategically plan out when you'll visit to avoid the crowds! Opting to go mid week, early in the morning, or later will typically be your best bets. Click here for more information about safety and details about visiting Kaaterskill Falls.

Waterfall and pool of Kaaterskill Falls

Windham High Peak

15 miles from Bugg Haus

Windham High Peak is the highest peak in the Northern Catskills and offers some of the most spectacular views in the area. The trailhead is located off Route 23 in Windham and is about a 6.5-mile round trip hike. The trail is steep and rocky, but hikers are rewarded with sweeping views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

North-South Lake

22 miles from Bugg Haus

North-South Lake is the largest and most popular campground in the Catskill Forest Preserve, and it's also a great spot for hiking (as well as swimming, fishing, and boating!). The park has a network of hiking trails, including the Escarpment Trail, which offers stunning views of the Hudson Valley and the surrounding mountains. This trail is a challenging 7.5-mile loop that takes hikers along the edge of the Catskill Escarpment, a geological formation that separates the high peaks from the low valleys. Check out the links above for other trail recommendations and activities the forest preserve has to offer for all different levels!

Hike up to Sunset Rock to catch the view of North South Lake

Hudson River School Hiking Trail

14 - 23 miles from Bugg Haus

The Hudson River School Hiking Trail is a popular hiking trail that winds through the picturesque landscapes of the Hudson River Valley in upstate New York. The trail is named after the Hudson River School, a group of 19th-century American landscape painters who were inspired by the region's natural beauty. Along the trail, hikers can enjoy stunning views of the Hudson River, explore deep forests, and visit historic sites like the Thomas Cole National Historic Site and the Olana State Historic Site. The trail offers a range of difficulty levels, from easy strolls to challenging climbs, making it accessible to hikers of all skill levels. The Hudson River School Hiking Trail is a must-visit for anyone who wants to experience the natural beauty and rich history of the Hudson River Valley.

Hunter Mountain

26 miles from Bugg Haus

Hunter Mountain is the second-highest peak in the Catskills and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. There are a few different options for accessing these views (one being Hunter Mountain's Scenic Skyride). The trailhead is located in the town of Hunter and is about a 4.6-mile round trip hike. The trail is moderate to difficult, with steep sections and rocky terrain, but the view from the summit is definitely worth the effort.

Fire Tower at the top of Hunter Mountain

Leave No Trace

The Catskills Leave No Trace Principles are a set of guidelines aimed at preserving the natural beauty and ecological integrity of the Catskill Mountains in New York. The principles include seven core concepts and emphasize the importance of minimizing human impact on the environment by being mindful of our actions and leaving the landscape as we found it. By following these principles, visitors to the Catskills can help protect the natural resources of the region for generations to come. Before recreating in the beautiful Catskill landscape please familiarize yourself with the seven Leave No Trace principles!

For additional hiking options, we've listed some of our other favorite go-to resources below!

Stay with us!

If you're looking to travel with a group, check out our property: Bugg Haus! Visit our website for more details on booking a stay and follow us on Instagram or Facebook @bugghaus!

Whether you've chosen to stay at our property during your Catskill getaway, or are simply looking for ideas for your travels, check out our other Catskill specific travel blogs! Stay tuned for our next feature focusing on family friendly activities in the area!

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