Harriman – Bear Mountain State Park is practically in my backyard. I can go on short notice without a lot of preparation for a quick nature fix or a little exercise. Sometimes that takes the form of a hike up Bear Mountain or another trail and sometimes I’ll venture out in winter to skin up the long defunct Silvermine Ski Area and make a few casual turns.
My original attraction to the park was it’s lakes. They’re ideal for a quick early morning paddle in a canoe or a kayak. When I first moved to Rockland County, I spent many hours paddling an old solo canoe I used to have, either by myself or, once Junior came along, with him seated on my blue cooler in the bow. We did that for a couple years, eventually switching to a larger canoe that could fit the whole family.