Hike Gertrude's Nose
New York › Gertrude's Nose Trailhead
Added by Kelly Phillips
Gertrude's Nose, close to New Paltz, is a great day trip if you're looking for a workout and offers stunning views and beautiful rock formations.
It would be impossible to see all of Minnewaska’s beautiful spots in one day. Gertrude's Nose is, in my opinion, the best view in the entire park. Round trip, the hike is approximately 5 hours, and is a 7.5 mile trip.
To get to the trailhead: Drive to the Minnewaska State Park entrance, pass the main entrance, and drive up the hill until you reach the highest lot. From there, walk over to the spot that overlooks Lake Minnewaska.
From there, take the carriage road right and follow the red blazes for a ways. This part of the hike is easy and relaxing.
Keep walking on the carriage road until you reach Millbrook Mountain Carriage Road with yellow blazes. Take that and bear left when the path splits. We stopped for a little to take photos of the views, which are AMAZING. Definitely take time to stretch, sit down, chat... make a day of it. Try and pick a day to do this with a clear forecast, because it's not easy to get back once you're off the trail, and you'll be disappointed if you have to turn around before reaching the end.
When you reach the point marked with triple red blazes, take the road less traveled. (See what I did there?)
The path off the carriage road can get a little tricky. There’s some crevasses you’ll have to hop over, a steep rocky drop you’ll have to climb down, and then up the way back. It’s tough, but totally worth it.
The trip there is around 3.5 miles. Minnewaska is beautiful and should be savored. These views are priceless.
- Hiking shoes
- Hiking poles
- Water & snacks
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Fitness, Hiking, Photography, Rock Climbing
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ReviewsLeave a Review
Hiked this trail today and what a day! When you pull into the parking lot (which you have to pay $10 for) there was a small booth where a girl told us exactly where to go for what we wanted to do. Park in the second lot, follow the path around the right side of the lake, and then begin the loop. When you walk around the lake it can get a little tricky. Almost right away there is a split where you can continue down or go to the sunset area which is about .8 miles away - tempting! Continue down the hill and you will hit a small opening by the lake which has a beautiful view. As you move forward around the lake you will pass openings to other trails. Once you get to the other end of the lake you have two options - go right which will have yellow blazes or go left to the red blazes. This will determine which direction of the loop you go. We went down and followed the red all the way around. It's the longer "half" but was worth every second. If you decide to go this way as we did once you pass the nose (which was so gnarly) you follow the red blazes until you end up at a fork. This is where the yellow blazes start. Head to the left and continue up the trail and you will end up back where you started at the lake. Enjoy!
Completed this hike on October 14th and it was the most perfect day! The fall foliage had hues of orange, yellow, and red and was probably the most spectacular foliage I've seen in the Hudson Valley. The pictures above do not do the trail or look-out points any justice. The hike was definitely more difficult on the last leg, right after you have reached the nose and continue on the Millbrook Mountain trail. Great photo opps and ideal Autumn hike.
Take It All In
This was a great hike. It is easy to get caught up getting to The Nose, but some of the best views are along the way. Take time to look over all the cliffs at the scenery. The Nose itself doesn't even provide the best views. Those leading up to it are some of the best you'll get on the hike. Continuing after The Nose provides some great views of the Hudson Valley and other ranges near the Shawangunks. This trip took me 4 hours with many stops to the scenery and scale the sides of a couple cliffs.
Strenuous, If You'd Like
If you want to make this hike a lot harder, but a lot of fun, I recommend going on Lake Minnewaska Carriage Road to Millbrook Mountain Trail then to Gertrude's Nose trail (all red blazes), then connect to Millbrook Mountain Carriage Road (yellow) and back on Lake Minnewaska Carriage Road. All around 7.5 mile round-trip and around 4 hours. Gorgeous views!
The carriage roads may seem like a bore to start the hike, but you move off them quickly and see some gorgeous views all along the hike. This was my first hike in the area years ago, and I was hooked after the first viewpoint!
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