Whether you’re new to Briarcliff Manor or have lived here a lifetime, chances are you aren’t familiar with all the walking, biking, and hiking trails that crisscross our community. They’ve been there for a long time, but they’ve been poorly maintained, promoted, or marked for level of difficulty. Until now. It is also important to to learn the basics if you’re going hiking.
Over the past six months, Mayor Steven Vescio, Trustee Peter Chatzky, Superintendent of Parks and Rec Henry Jamin and other members of the Rec Committee have been working to not only clean up the trails but also make them more accessible, both on the ground and through the use of the latest technology.
The first step in the process was to replace worn signage, groom the entranceways where necessary, and create a new parking area for the trail surrounding the reservoir at Old Sleepy Hollow Road.
The next step involved mapping all the trails and adding them to the Hiking Project app developed by outdoor retail giant REI. The app includes trails across the country and allows users to add their comments or even post additional trails.
According to Chatzky, the new app and web-based system provides “maps of the trails, difficulty ratings, any amenities available like bathroom facilities, parking, and whether you can bring a dog.” You’ll also find information on whether the trails are family friendly, ADA accessible, have historical significance, and other features.
“The benefit for Briarcliff is it allows us to plan our trails and how we can better connect them,” noted Mayor Vescio. “The idea is we can have a whole trail around Briarcliff and connect it to other trails like Rockefeller which would be a great amenity for Briarcliff residents. It’s relatively low-cost, low-maintenance, and everybody likes hiking.”
Another benefit of the improved trail network is to encourage hikers and bikers to visit the downtown area and frequent the local businesses. “If we can get more bikers to leave the trail and ride into our downtown, have lunch or get a soda or ice cream, it’s another way to get visitors into Briarcliff,” said Vescio.
The Hiking Project app is available for iOS and Android phones in their respective stores. You can also access the trails at www.hikingproject.com and search for Briarcliff Manor.
Briarcliff TrailsLevel of Difficulty
- Law Memorial Park Walking Path –Easy
- North County Trailway: Law Park South to Route 117– Easy/Intermediate
- Kate Kennard Trail –Intermediate
- Yellow Trail –Intermediate/Difficult
- North County Trailway: Law Park North to N. State Rd –Easy/Intermediate
- Red Trail –Difficult