Hudson Highlands: Breakneck Ridge Loop

While the Hudson Highlands are modest in elevation, they are home to some incredible hiking. What the peaks lack in height they make up for with incredible views of the Hudson Valley and convenient access for those in the metro area.

breakneck ridge summit view

Proximity to the Hudson Highlands was a major selling point for my wife and I when we moved to Rockland County. Each time I climb one of the local summits and take in the beauty of the region, it reaffirms that we made a great decision.

There are countless options for hikes in the Hudson Valley, but my personal favorite is Breakneck Ridge. The steepness and exposure — unrivaled south of the Adirondacks — make for a challenging and memorable experience.

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Spring Skiing in Maine is Wicked Pissah

Sitting complacently in my camping chair staring down at the remains of the lobster I’d just devoured, an involuntary smile spread across my face from ear to ear.

Out west, our brethren are still reaping the spoils of “Miracle March,” posting powder photos on Instagram, but in this moment I felt no envy. Here I was in shorts and a t-shirt, sitting in a parking lot at Sunday River enjoying a lobster boil and a cold beer in between sessions of soft, sun-soaked spring skiing.

I love powder as much as the next ski junkie, but this past weekend in Maine was about as good as it gets.

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Catching Winter at the Right Moment

The 2017-18 season has been a tale of at least two winters. We got off to a promising start with big storms in December that opened up trails, and the snow was preserved by a persistent and brutal polar vortex that lasted into the second week of January.

Then MLK weekend featured a devastating thaw with significant rain that devoured the eastern snowpack, and since then conditions have largely mirrored last year—extended dry periods with mild temperatures, punctuated by brief periods of heavy snowfall. Getting it while it’s good has required patience, luck, and a willingness to go the distance—sometimes even as far as Quebec.

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