Sam’s Point Preserve is a gem within the Hudson Valley, boasting hikers with beautiful views, and scenic trails. It is known for its immense height, in that it is the highest point of the Shawangunk Mountains!
That’s not the only thing that attracts hikers and nature lovers alike to Minnewaska State Park Preserve: Sam’s Point. The area comprises of around 5,000 acres and is home to a waterfall, ice caves, and a lake.
Check out how to make sure your adventure through this amazing state park is nothing but amazing!
Prepare For Your Trip
Sam’s Point Preserve is just a 21-minute drive from Skyway Camping Resort, located at 400 Sam’s Point Road Cragsmoor, NY 12420.
The park opens at 9:00 a.m. and closing times vary throughout the year and seasons. To avoid crowds, it is best to arrive early. If possible, you should plan your trip on an off- weekend day to have a peaceful hike. Prepare to pay $10 per car to park, which can be paid for by credit card, cash or check.
The hiking trails are challenging, but steady enough for kids and pets. If you are planning on bringing your furry friend, make sure they are on a six foot or shorter leash at all times.
It is about 5 miles to the top of Sam’s Point, and 7.5 miles if you visit the whole area. There is a lot to see, and different trails to choose from. When you arrive, grab a map and follow the well-guided markings to choose the path you wish to follow.
Since the trail is lengthy, you will want to pack plenty of water and food. Note that barbequing and cooking is not permitted at any location within Minnewaska State Park Preserve, but setting up a pre-cooked picnic with snacks is encouraged and will help fuel your energy!
Choose Your Path
Sam’s Point Preserve is full of adventure. The loop trail gives you the option to choose your path. Turn right to explore the Ice Caves, venture left to explore the VerKeerderkill Falls, or choose to go straight up to Lake Maratanza. If you reach the top of Sam’s Point, you will feast your eyes on spectacular panoramic views of the Hudson Valley. You can choose to save the best for last, and explore the other wonders of Sam’s Point, or go straight to the highest point and work your way down.
The Ice Caves are one of the more popular sites in Sam’s Point. It takes about 2 hours to hike from the beginning of the trail, or 30 minutes from Sam’s Point. You will cross over rocky terrain, stone stairs, ladders, and bridges to get to the caves. Once you arrive at the Ice Caves, you will feel a cool sensation breezing by. The caves keep a constant cool through summer by trapping air and snow in the winter months.
VerKeerderkill Falls is a spectacular sight. This amazing 187-foot high waterfall is situated just a couple hundred feet from the Ice Caves, and 2 hours from the beginning of Sam’s Point. We suggest taking this route if you are up for a challenge. The rocky terrain is at a steep incline, and there are no railings around the waterfall.
Lake Maratanza is a beautiful lake that is over 2,000 feet above sea level. It is the highest lake in New York’s Shawangunk Ridge. The trail is surrounded by rocky terrain and vast forest trees. This lake has no fish and is damned, providing drinking water for Ellenville, New York.
Planning on visiting Sam’s Point? Stay at Skyway Camping Resort! (845) 253-5748
If you have questions about the trails, call Sam’s Point Visitor Center at (845) 647-7989