Hudson Valley Hike: Constitution Marsh

Sometimes you’re not looking to climb mountains, run marathons, or swim the English Channel. Sometimes you just want to take a gorgeous walk through the woods and then stroll on a boardwalk over a marsh surrounded by mountains. If that’s all you want to do, go to Constitution Marsh [127 Warren Landing Rd, Garrison, NY 10524].

constitution marsh 1This is an easy hike, though not without some elevation gains, under two miles long. After parking in the tiny lot, follow the signs down the gravel road to the trailhead. Take the blue trail into those woods and really, it won’t be long until you start oogling at the view.

constitution marsh 2 constitution marsh 3Head up some stone stairs

constitution marsh 4And down a little hill, and you’ll reach the entrance to the marsh.

constitution marsh 5It all happens quick, this is a short hike so savor every moment. The marsh opens up amazing views of the Hudson, and gives excellent opportunity for wildlife sightings.

constitution marsh 6Walk slow, keep your eyes and ears open. We saw the king fish right under the first bridge – so huge, yet elusive to my camera. Grasshoppers were chirping in the swaying reeds.

constitution marsh 8Vultures circled above. It was low tide so we looked for critters in the shallow waters and by the roots, spotting frogs and minnows. There are many panels revealing ecological information.

constitution marsh 7After wandering all of the paths, we started back into the woods, and up the gravel hill again. We loved our time at the preserve, but the journey was not quite over. Get back to your car and head down the road away from the preserve. In no time you will walk under a bright and cheery red bridge.

constitution marsh 9Just seconds later you will see an old gate, overrun by weeds. Totally legal to walk in, it’s state land. Enter and cross the bridge heading left next to the creek, upstream on the green trail.

constitution marsh 10 constitution marsh 11Everything seems so instantaneous around here, just a minute and you’ll reach Indian Brook Falls with quite a bit of gratification.

constitution marsh 12This bonus waterfall is magnificent, and feels like a secret treasure. On a warm afternoon in early October we found some guys disregarding the ‘no swimming’ sign and enjoying a brisk dip. The water was cold, but refreshing on a hot day. The world doesn’t get much more beautiful than this, enjoy!

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