Ed Day, Rockland County Executive

July 21, 2015
Contact: Scott Salotto (845) 638-5645
               Patricia Schnabel Ruppert, DO, FAAFP (845) 364-2512


NEW CITY, NY - - Rockland County Executive Ed Day and County Health Commissioner Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert encourage you to put on your walking shoes and enjoy the "great outdoors!" Join experienced Rockland County Trail Guide Docents on a variety of free local guided walks in July and August.

"We hope County residents take advantage of this great chance to explore our beautiful, natural environment and get some exercise at the same time," said Dr. Ruppert. Guided park walks are scheduled throughout the year – for more information and the schedule visit The July and August guided park walks highlighted below offer visitors varied terrain, great scenery, interesting discussion points, and different levels of walking (1 sneaker is easy, 2 sneaker is moderate, 3 sneaker is strenuous):

Dater Mountain Nature Park: Photography Walk
Sunday, July 26, 2015 from 9 am – 11am

  • Join Docent Victor Castro on this 3-mile strenuous (3-sneaker) walk. The walk begins with an incline up a gravel path on the eastern side of the mountain, leading to the ridgeline. The walk continues on a multi-terrain path, south on the ridge out to an overlook; here we will rest a few minutes, check out the scenery, and have a snack if you wish. The walk continues up and down over a wooded, grassy and stony, stream filled area on the eastern part of the mountain where we will re-connect with the ridge trail, heading north back to the beginning of the trail and then down the hill to the parking area.
  • Meet at the end of Johnsontown Road in Sloatsburg (10974). There is a circular parking area there.
  • Directions: New York State Thruway Route 87 heading north, get off at Exit 15A, at the end of the exit make a left onto Route 17 (heading north). Drive through the town making a right at the light onto Seven Lakes Drive. Just after the overpass there will be a slight left onto Johnsontown Road. Follow the road until you reach the end.
  • This is a photography walk, so bring along your camera.

Hook Mountain: Fitness Time on the Hook! 
Saturday, August 15, 2015 from 9:30 am – 1:30 pm

  • Join Docent Nice McLean, on this difficult (3+ sneaker) 8-mile round-trip fitness walk. The walk will begin from the Firehouse at Rockland Lake State Park. Walkers will hike all the way up the mountain then proceed down to Nyack Beach and return to the Firehouse along the flat river trail. The docent will lead a variety of stretching/exercises throughout the hike, including taekwondo movements.
  • Meet in the parking lot by the Firehouse at Rockland Lake State Park in Congers. Parking is limited.
  • Directions: From 9W North at Lake Road, make a right into Rockland Lake (North Entrance), stay to the left at the "T" and pass the Knickerbocker Firehouse. You will see the parking area. There is limited parking here.
  • You must register for this walk - call (845) 708-7307 or e-mail Bring the following: snack/lunch, water, and bug repellent. The walk is not stroller friendly, dogs are not allowed on this guided walk, and there are no restrooms available along the walk.

Samuel G. Fisher Mt. Ivy Environmental Park: All Aboard for Thiells, Pomona and Mt. Ivy!
Saturday, August 22, 2015 from 10 am – 12 pm

  • Join Docent Jack Bloom on this 3-mile moderately difficult (2-sneaker) walk on a combination of an old road, open meadows and an abandoned rail road track. There may be some wet spots, especially after it rains, as the area is a wetland. The trail is relatively flat and wide. Half of the walk is along an old railroad right of way. The other half is a natural trail. This abandoned railroad track is full of Rockland County history! First, stroll through grassy meadows in the shadow of Boulders Stadium. Then, discover Rockland's railroad history along the old Erie Railroad right of way ... right in our backyard. Maybe you'll even find an old iron railroad tie spike. All this within the Pomona/Mt. Ivy wetlands.
  • Meet Jack at the park entrance past the Fire Training Center off of Firemen's Memorial Drive in Pomona.
  • Directions: From Exit 12 off the Palisades Parkway make your way to Route 45. Go south 0.1 mile and make a right into Pomona Road, then right again onto Firemen's Memorial Drive. Park at the end of the road, but do not block the gate. Please note that parking is limited.
  • This walk is not stroller friendly, no restrooms, and dogs are not allowed on guided walk.

Important general information about the guided walks:

  • Pre-registration for all walks is suggested (for some walks pre-registration is required). For more information about the walks or to register, call (845) 708-7307 or e-mail
  • Please check and click on the walk(s) you are interested in for more information, directions, and any changes to the schedule. Walks are held through out the year - stay tuned by checking out the website periodically for updates.
  • Meet in the parking lot, unless otherwise specified. All walks are rain or shine. Wear proper footwear (closed-toe sturdy shoes such as walking shoes/boots or sneakers) and clothing (light-colored) and seasonally appropriate attire such as a jacket or hat, depending on the weather. Hiking boots are preferred. Bring along binoculars, water, sunscreen, a snack, and walking sticks if desired. As with any physical activity program, it is recommended you speak to your physician before starting.
  • All guided walks are coordinated and supported in partnership with the Rockland County Division of Environmental Resources, the Rockland County Youth Bureau's Conservation and Service Corps program and the Rockland County Department of Health's Steps to a Healthier Rockland program.