Devil’s Path tested our hiking limits

Devil's Path

It’s easy to become overconfident when you’re spending most of your weekends outdoors. But the thing about exploring these wild places is that eventually you’ll encounter a situation that humbles you.

Such was our own experience a few weeks ago on the Devil’s Path—a 22ish mile hike that winds up and down six peaks in the Catskills. The challenge became both mental and physical as we attempted to climb Indian Head, Twin, Sugarloaf, Plateau, Hunter and Westkill mountain in a day. We’ve been on a few long distance backpacking trips and thought this day-hike, while not easy, wouldn’t require more than just some extra sweat and motivation to get through. Continue reading Devil’s Path tested our hiking limits

Here are our favorite NYC beaches

nyc beaches

We were in Kentucky last weekend climbing in the Red River Gorge and when the weather turned hot and humid, as it did almost every afternoon we were there, we couldn’t help but think about the beaches back home.

Our own haunt is out in the Rockaways where we can surf or spend a day on the boardwalk. We can’t leave without grabbing a bite to eat at the grill at the Playland Motel (especially after an early morning surf sesh) and there are plenty of places to grab a bite just a few feet from the breaking waves. If the thought of spending part of your weekend on the subway is unappealing, consider grabbing a spot on the NYC Beach Bus because it’s fun and quick (get to the beach in 30 minutes!) and probably departs a few blocks from your apartment. Continue reading Here are our favorite NYC beaches

Stay cool with these summer outdoor activities

NYC summer outdoor activities

Confession: we’ve been feeling more sorta than outdoorsy lately and we’re blaming it on the heat. When it’s so hot out that we’re sweating before we even get to a trailhead, things like iced cold brews and rosé begin to sound more appealing than climbing projects and day hikes.

But the heat of summer also comes with a lot of benefits especially for us weekend warriors. The days are longer, for instance, which makes fitting in an adventure after work actually possible. Continue reading Stay cool with these summer outdoor activities

Get into gear: Here’s where you can go mountain biking near New York City

Mountain biking near New York

Our interest in mountain biking was piqued at a wedding last fall when we overheard a bunch of dolled-up friends of the bride planning a mountain biking trip for the following day during the reception dinner. We couldn’t make that trip so when we saw that Brooklyn’s very own 718 Cyclery was hosting a ride at Allamuchy State Park (about an hour outside of NYC) and offering to haul a fleet of mountain bikes up and back for beginners to borrow, we couldn’t say no. We had never so much has touched a trail bike before that day but after our trip, we came back to the city and measured the remaining corner of space in our apartment to see if an MTB would fit there. Continue reading Get into gear: Here’s where you can go mountain biking near New York City

Hike in Minnewaska State Park for scenic views of waterfalls

waterfalls in minnewaska

We have this friend named Tim who’s not the most outdoorsy of souls but who finally, after months of us sending him countless well framed Snapchats of our outdoor adventures, asked us to take him on a hike. We wanted to hook him on the idea so it was important we take him somewhere impressive. Our requirements were:

  • Hiking that isn’t too challenging but where there’s an option to jump on more moderate trails
  • Instagramable scenic overlooks
  • Plenty of cell service (Tim loves cell service)
  • Within a few hours from the city (We sprung for a Zipcar but we didn’t want to have to leave for the trip too early in the morning)

Continue reading Hike in Minnewaska State Park for scenic views of waterfalls

Turn your weekend jog up a notch with a trail run

trail running ward pound ridge

This week’s adventure is an essay from contributor and new Sorta Outdoorsy pal Lyndsey Boekenkamp. If you have a Sorta Outdoorsy story you’d like to share, email hi@sortaoutdoorsy.com.

Being a trail runner, I’m always looking for new challenges. Every weekend, I prep my hydration pack, whip up a few PB&Js, jump in my car, and go off in search of dirt, rocks, and freedom. On those days when a quick local jaunt just doesn’t cut it, I lace up my sneakers and head to Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. Located in the small town of Cross River, NY about an hour north of NYC by Metro-North, and with more than 40 miles of trails, it’s the perfect place to get lost on purpose. Steeped in lore and local history, the site is the location of several well-known trail races throughout the year, including the infamous Leatherman’s Loop 10K in April, which boasts steep climbs, sweet single track (clear, narrow, well groomed trails), and a whole lot of mud. Continue reading Turn your weekend jog up a notch with a trail run

Spring hike checklist: Trails near New York City

Sorta Outdoorsy Spring Hike Photo by Emile Hallez
Photo by Emile Hallez

We were discussing some of our favorite hikes near the city at Outdoorfest’s Mappy Hour last night which stirred the project manager in us to start creating a list of trails we’d like to explore over the next few weeks. Check out our picks below and let us know what’s on your spring hike to-do list.  Continue reading Spring hike checklist: Trails near New York City

Surf: Catch a winter wave in Queens

Winter Surfing in Queens
Photo courtesy Outdoorfest

We did something recently that was so awesome we can’t believe we hadn’t done it already. What we did was take the A train out almost as far as it goes to Beach 67 early one morning to surf. We were heading to our first surf lesson and as the train rolled past Broad Channel, we looked out at the water and questioned starting such a hobby in the middle of winter. Continue reading Surf: Catch a winter wave in Queens

Hike the Long Path: a day trip fit for your lazy Saturday

Hike the Long Path

You slept in on Saturday and missed that early morning Breakneck Ridge-bound Metro-North but find that you’re still jonesin’ for a hike. Hope is not lost! Head to the George Washington Bridge, where you’ll find miles of trails, including the aptly-named Long Path. Continue reading Hike the Long Path: a day trip fit for your lazy Saturday