North Point Loop - Storm King State Park | Trail guides from the community | Forum

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North Point Loop - Storm King State Park
Topic Rating: +2 Topic Rating: +2 (2 votes) 
July 29, 2014
6:23 pm
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EdC
Senior executive trail boss
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Here is a hike I did two days ago. I have done Storm King Mountain several times and I was looking for something different. On the NY-NJ Trail Conference map #113 I noticed a scenic view labeled North Point. I figured I would go check it out. Here is a map of the hiking area:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....41c15f.png

The trail head is in a parking area off of 9W. If you are coming from the north, you will have to pass it (it is on the northbound side) and do a U-turn a few miles past it, where the West Point Golf Course is. If you are coming from the south, it will be on your right, about 2.3 miles past the golf course.

You start by following the white trail at the trail head. The path is clearly blazed:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....7a6626.jpg

In a little while you will reach the end of the white trail:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....9a3618.jpg

At this point look for the blue trail on your right. It will lead uphill:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....afe1c9.jpg

It won't take too long before the views open up:

Storm King http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....92cb33.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....9a9d01.jpg

Route 9W http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....44b3b8.jpg

Storm King http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....211979.jpg

Breakneck Ridge http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....4fea27.jpg

Breakneck Ridge http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....c6994d.jpg

Breakneck Ridge http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....045ec0.jpg

Storm King http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....b6b6c9.jpg

Route 9W and Sugarloaf across the Hudson http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....43f41f.jpg

Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....9317bf.jpg

Breakneck Ridge and Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....f1fcf9.jpg

After soaking in all those views, continue on the blue trail. Be careful and don't get bucked off onto an old woods road. Look for the blue blazes:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....56ba2b.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....76f928.jpg

After the woods road junction, you will gain about 175 feet over the next 0.40 miles. You will then descend 170 feet over the next 0.40 of a mile as you head towards the Hudson. A nice view of the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge and Pollepel Island will open up:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....ba5dbc.jpg

You will also get another look at Breakneck Ridge:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....d2f750.jpg

If you refer to the map in the beginning of this post, you will see a series of scenic views along the blue trail  that are near Route 218 and the Hudson. There are 5 in total. From the second scenic view I took these:

Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....a76716.jpg

Cold Spring http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....851e2f.jpg

Quarry on Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....3e9727.jpg

Quarry on Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....a7c701.jpg

Breakneck Ridge and Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....4de85f.jpg

Bull Hill (Mt. Taurus) http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....2884d9.jpg

From the 3rd scenic view:

Storm King http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....fdcbe3.jpg

Train tracks at base of Storm King http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....42f206.jpg

Little Stony Point http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....d723af.jpg

I went to the final scenic view, labeled Pitching Point. There wasn't a clear path to it (I'm not sure if I even found it) and the view was the worst of the 5. Do yourself a favor and skip it.

Continue on the blue trail as it continues its descent. You will eventually come to the end as it reaches Route 218:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....0932da.jpg

There is a nice monument to James Stillman, which you can see when you stand on the road looking towards the trail you just came off:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....a91d5b.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....8a1f89.jpg

At this point I walked about 30 feet north on 218 looking for the beginning of the white trail. I never found the actual beginning, but saw what looked like a trail:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....a3d174.jpg

In about 30 feet I picked up a white blaze:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....4505ab.jpg

The rest of the hike about a mile and a half over which you gain 900 feet. There will be no more scenic overlooks, but it is a nice hike through the woods that I really enjoyed. Follow the white trail until it ends at the blue trail:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....decb49.jpg

After the above trail marking you will quickly see another:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....c4dd69.jpg

After that, just look a little to your left and you will see the blue trail marker:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....1212b9.jpg

NOTE: If you are feeling Olympic, you could go right on the blue and take it to the Storm King Mountain loop and then return. I might try that in the future.

You are now going to follow the blue trail back to the white trail where the hike began. You will see this:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....5b9869.jpg

You want to go straight here:

http://img.photobucket.com/alb.....6d25d6.jpg

Follow the white trail back to your car and call it a day :)

I tracked the hike at 3.8 miles. Total elevation gain is 1,380 feet, which isn't too bad. I'd give this a difficulty rating of 6 out of 10. The hike offers some really nice views at angles that you don't get from the Storm King hike. I am glad I did it and will definitely do it again!

Final Note: You can park on Route 218 where the blue trail and white trail sort of meet. You can then do the loop minus the white trail that you take from the 9W parking area. This will reduce the hike by about 0.40 of a mile.

-Ed-

August 16, 2014
12:48 am
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Mike
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February 19, 2012
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@EdC,

This post inspired me to add a "Thumbs up" feature to the forum -- thanks so much for taking the time to share all these details and photos!  This is a hike I've been meaning to check out, and I really appreciate all the great info.  This is also a popular stomping ground of The Maestro (Michael Neil O'Donnell) -- he's posted some awesome shots from North Point, too. 

Thanks for putting together such a great post!

Mike

August 17, 2014
4:03 pm
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justherb
Mt. Kisco, NY
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July 5, 2014
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Did this today, some of the best views in the Hudson Valley. The first viewpoint almost feels like you're in the Pacific Northwest. If that's ALL you do, it's worth it. If you continue on then there are more amazing views. I may take my kids all the way to the descent and turn around. I'm not sure they'd be up for the steep descent and then going back up the white/blue/white to the parking lot.

As you approach 218 I think you can jump the stream and drop down the embankment to a second stream and onto the white trail. Had I known this I wouldn't have slipped in the loose dirt and fallen on my ass as cars drove by below me.

I think this is the first trail where you had to hike UP to your car. It's worth noting that getting back onto 9W can be a little sketchy. Cars are coming fast downhill and there's a ridge that you have to get over before getting onto the road. Make sure you can't see any cars before you go.

If you've never driven 218 you should really do it while you're here, it's spectacular. Plus if you go South on 218 you can see where you were. Thanks for suggesting this hike, I'll be back many times.

North Point Loop Map

August 19, 2014
11:07 pm
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EdC
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I'm glad you liked it Smile Whenever I am on Breakneck or Bull Hill, I always look for North Point across the river and think, "I was there!"

-Ed-

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