Bear Mountain Loop Trail

MODERATE 750 reviews
#1 of 22 trails in

Bear Mountain Loop Trail is a 3.6 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Bear Mountain, New York that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,059 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

camping

cross country skiing

hiking

nature trips

trail running

forest

lake

river

views

wildlife

blowdown

rocky

scramble

This steep incline up to Bear Mountain summit features incredible views.

hiking
blowdown
snow
8 days ago

Slippery, icy in winter, ice cleat would help.

hiking
blowdown
snow
25 days ago

hiking
28 days ago

Moderate hike with some dope views. The steps can be pretty slippery in the winter walk them cautiously. We found an abandoned shack which looks like it was once used as a birdwatching tower, but the floor had collapsed. The peak offers a really nice 360 degree view of the Hudson. Overall it’s an awesome hike for family’s and large groups of people.

hiking
1 month ago

This is a beautiful trial , just a WARNING, there are about 1,000 steps very steep and hard on the knees , prepare accordingly. Otherwise it’s absolutely gorgeous one of my favorites!

hiking
1 month ago

Great moderate trail, beautiful in the fall. Very busy, lots of tourists. Rain from the previous day made the trail more challenging as we had to climb off-trail. Feet got wet. Plan accordingly.

hiking
1 month ago

Very good hike overall and especially for dogs! The trails were very well maintained for mid December, a bit confusing at the start as the first two markers were colored blue but once you get pass those it was very well marked! Great views throughout the hike and really cool once you get to the top! Highly recommend to hikers of all levels and experience

hiking
2 months ago

Have to pay $10 to park. This trail starts as a Major Welch Trail (red dot on white). It took us an hour to get to the summit of the Bear Mountain, nice work out, fun rock scrambling (can be challenging for those who are out of shape). On the way down we took the Appalachian trail (white blaze) easy and beautiful. Total time 2 1/2 hours. Very enjoyable!

hiking
2 months ago

Nice views on various levels. Moderate is an accurate rating, though my 63 yo mother may disagree lol. My 7 year old did awesome. Go up the mountain and down the AP’s rock steps. Can get pretty crowded... start early.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike with gorgeous views in the fall, but I’d suggest waiting a few days after any significant amount of rain. The entire trail becomes a creek with 1-10 inches of water.

2 months ago

Fun loop, did this in icy wet muddy conditions and it was a fun yet challenging ascent. Walk back on the AT was scenic, mostly cut rock steps, but nice overall.

hiking
3 months ago

Bear Mountain is beautiful. This was an absolutely awesome day trip. We had a lot of fun and the views at the top were amazing, the weather was also perfect which made it even more beautiful. Our dog had such a good time too, love seeing him so happy out in the wilderness.

3 months ago

Nice views, but insanely crowded. There are nicer hikes in the area in places like Storm King State Park.

3 months ago

Really enjoyed this hike. Well marked and offered a variety of easy to moderate hiking. Views are amazing

hiking
3 months ago

Did the actual 3.9 bear mtn loop. What....a....climb...i did the loop counter clockwise starting off with the rock/trail climb. It was pretty tough the leaves and ground were still slippery from the rain that had fallen the day/night before and it got very steep at times. As soon as i hit memorial drive from the path i thought it was over then i saw a nice stair trail on the other side of the road leading up towards the tower. Beautiful views and the trail coming down was very pleasant and easy. ( thats if you do the loops counter clockwise but honestly both ways are a killer lol) GREAT hike.

hiking
3 months ago

Hi Hikers,

We are wandering if this loop is doable in winter ? We'll be in NYC next January and would like to have a break in the nature.

Do you think is possible ? Did someone already experiment this ?

Thank you so much for your advice !

Morgane

hiking
3 months ago

Great Time with the girls hiking at Bear Mountain the pass Sunday. This hike is challenging, pretty steep in the beginning super intense incline about 30 mins worth all the rocks. Stuffed from severe cramps it’s all worth to see the Beautiful View on the top. ⛰ We did counter clockwise. Easier to incline and take the stairs back down. I would say this Trail is little harder than Modern.

hiking
3 months ago

Did the trail counterclockwise- up the rocks and down the stairs. Not very long but challenging. The elevation changes sharply - pretty steep most of the way (check the topography map). Beautiful view at top. Started getting crowded on the way down. Definitely not a remote hiking spot especially on weekends in the summer. Come early if you want to avoid crowds. I suggest hiking sticks, especially on way down.

hiking
3 months ago

This hike is challenging but doable. First, when going up you should go counter clockwise. We did and watching people slide down the rocks on their behinds just looked painful. Plus the hike is more rewarding going up on that side. Second, make sure you wear good gripping hiking boots. The trail is wet and there are some serious rocks you need to grip to. Third, stretch and make sure your ankles are in good shape. Lots of places to twist your ankle.
I’m not sure what this map was showing but you take the trail up to the tower then you go down on the appalachian trail (all steps btw) and it’s heavily trafficked. We parked next to the bear mountain inn that way we could use the bathroom before heading out.
Downsides: People at the top near the tower can be obnoxious. Loud music, people sitting on the trail, lots of motorcycles revving their engines, there was a guy flying a drone at eye level at the vista. You can hear cars, chainsaws, motorcycles and people on most of this trail. It’s also slammed with people on the weekends. So go early and during the week.

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing view from top

hiking
3 months ago

Love it a bit scary for my first experience but definitely will do it again.

3 months ago

Good hike and lots of fun rock scrambles but only call out is that a portion of the trail was under construction so you have to walk along a road for a bit. Also there are a couple roads mid-trail so if you have a dog, be careful they don’t run out onto a busy road. The trail got very crowded after 11am so if you want to avoid crowds, I recommend starting early.

3 months ago

Lots of stairs and people, up hill can be a loooooong journey. One way up and down. Great views and it was quite pretty, not for beginners—lots of great picnic spots! Beautiful vistas of the lower of the lower Hudson valley.

hiking
4 months ago

Pretty much all rock going up. Moderate difficulty so it keeps the little kids away. Very nice views toward the top as you reach the Perkins Tower. Some of the views are obstructed until the leaves fall from the trees, but still plenty to see. Going down it's all steps and there was one moving waterfall.

hiking
4 months ago

The beginning is super intense incline about a good 30min worth all rocks . Was a challenge but a nice view. After there is another 30-40 min incline with steps which was a bit easier but still intense because of the length. Another great view when you reach the tower . Continued looping back again a few steep drops which you needed to sit , side and hold on to trees a bit to get through . Seemed like a bit more then moderate to me but then again I haven tried a “hard” trail yet

hiking
4 months ago

Amazing trail, would recommend walking sticks

hiking
4 months ago

I went on probably the most beautiful Saturday of the year, however, it was SUPER CROWDED. Besides the crowds, it’s not exactly in a remote or removed setting. You truly felt like you were hiking in a park, and not a boundless natural setting. The hike itself – distance, terrain, and variety of obstacles – all great. Just not a nature escape type of hike.

hiking
4 months ago

Great, moderately challenging day hike. We parked near the Inn and walked to the lake trail to join Major Welch. Unfortunately we did it clockwise, meaning we climbed the stairs and descended over the rocks. It was difficult and I would have liked to do the loop the opposite way. Regardless, great views! This gets 4 stars instead of 5 because it was crowded, even during the week, and we heard a lot of road noise. There was also a lot of litter, as noted by a previous commentator.

hiking
4 months ago

Definitely worth coming multiple times

5 months ago

Beautiful hike!

5 months ago

A nice hike with a bit of a challenge but totally manageable for my 30 pound pup. I agree with others that this trail is more fun counter clockwise than clockwise. Some nice rock scrambles going that way which were fun to climb up but seemed like they’d be a challenge and unpleasant to go down. After reaching the tower, the trail is downhill and mostly stairs. I gave it 4 instead of 5 stars because it’s a bit crowded at the tower and on the second half, and it’s close to the roadway in parts (even requiring you to cross a road at one point). You should know there is a $10 parking fee. I’ve been to a bunch of Harriman trails, but this was my first time parking by Bear Mountain and it took me by surprise. I’d love to do this again and explore some of the secondary trails.

Load More