Best trails in Schenectady, New York

2,307 Reviews
Looking for a great trail near Schenectady, New York? AllTrails has 17 great hiking trails, trail running trails, walking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. If you're looking for the best trails around Peebles Island State Park or John Boyd Thacher State Park, we've got you covered. You'll also find some great local park options, like Vroman's Nose Unique Area or Huyck Preserve. Just looking to take a quick stroll? We've got 15 easy trails in Schenectady ranging from 0.9 to 4.1 miles and from 229 to 1,056 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
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Map of trails in Schenectady, New York
Top trails (17)
#1 - North Rim and South Rim Red Trail Loop
Plotter Kill Nature Preserve
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(817)
Length: 5.3 mi • Est. 2 h 43 m
Beautiful streams, step falls and 2 tall waterfalls. It may require going off trail to view the falls. Forest views. Great top rope ice climbing in January-Feb. Plotter Kill Preserve is a nature preserve near Rotterdam, NY. The Plotter Kill, a tributary of the Mohawk River, flows through a very rugged gorge. The forest here contains a mix of hardwoods and confiers. There are three beautiful waterfalls. The Upper Falls is 60 feet; the Lower Falls and the Rynex Creek Falls are both 40 feet. Start on the red trail near the kiosk. Take the side trail (blue) which will take you to lookouts over the Upper and Lower falls. Continue on the red trail which crosses the Kill on a foot bridge. You will pass by the Upper and Lower falls. The trail goes down a switchback taking you to the top of the falls on the Rynex creek. Cross the creek here. If you have ample time, you can follow the red trail to the end of the preserve near the Thruway. There is a cascading waterfall there.Show more
#2 - Lisha Kill Nature Loop
Lisha Kill Natural Area
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(509)
Length: 2.2 mi • Est. 1 h 5 m
Trail consists of Grattan Family Trail (red), Frank's Trail (yellow), and Paul's Trail (blue). The Lisha Kill Preserve, owned by the Nature Conservancy, is a rare example of an old growth forest in a developed area. Some of trees (Eastern white pine and Eastern hemlock) are estimated to be well over 200 years old. Route 7 was originally slated to pass through this lovely forest. Through the efforts of local residents, it was saved for future generations. The trail (marked with red) heads south crossing a creek on a small bridge. Soon you reach a T-intersection. Bear right and continue along the top edge of the ravine. The trail drops down to the level of the stream before climbing again and returning you back at the T-intersection. Turn right and head back to the parking area. Show more
#3 - Sanders Preserve Trail
Schenectady, New York
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(216)
Length: 4.1 mi • Est. 2 h 3 m
Sanders Preserve is a loop trail located near Schenectady, New York that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.Show more
#4 - Great Flats Nature Trail
Schenectady, New York
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(198)
Length: 1.8 mi • Est. 44 m
Bring your binoculars and watch closely for birds, amphibians, and little animals as you circle this remarkable preserve. From the trailhead, a well-defined path is followed through woodland displaying a variety of plants and trees. The wooded area eventually gives way to wetlands and a small lake. Here the path becomes a boardwalk round the lake.Show more
#5 - Blue Loop and Orange Trail
Plotter Kill Nature Preserve
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(74)
Length: 1.8 mi • Est. 56 m
As of July 31 2020, users have reported that there are temporary closures in this area. Please consult the park's website before visiting.Show more
#6 - Indian Meadows Park Loop Trail
Indian Meadows Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(68)
Length: 1.5 mi • Est. 38 m
#7 - Highland Loop (Yellow)
Plotter Kill Nature Preserve
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(58)
Length: 1.5 mi • Est. 48 m
#8 - Reist Sanctuary Yellow Trail Loop
H.G. Reist Wildlife Sanctuary
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(55)
Length: 1.4 mi • Est. 37 m
#9 - Mohawk River State Park Loop
Schenectady, New York
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(54)
Length: 2.2 mi • Est. 1 h
NOTE: As of August 2020, hikers report that part of the trail is closed due to road work. Mohawk River State Park covers 107 acres in the vicinity of Lock 7 and has a boat launch as well as hiking trails. New York State purchased what was previously known as the Schenectady Museum Natural Preserve when making this park. The Mohawk Hudson Hike-Bike trail runs through park and serves as the starting point for a number of interconnected trails through the woods including the John F Brown Trail system which run through 100 acres of Niskayuna Town Land North of the park. Terrain is varied and runs through a number of ecosystems: mixed forests, overgrown fields, ravines. There are a few hills but the trails switchback so they aren't too steep. Most of the stream crossings have bridges. There are some older, informational signs and a number of newer markers providing some identification details for the trees they are on.Show more
#10 - Grattan Family and Frank's Trail
Lisha Kill Natural Area
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(34)
Length: 0.9 mi • Est. 27 m
This trail consists of Grattan Family Trail (red) and Frank's Trail (yellow)Show more
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