By Eve Nevelos, Editorial Staff ‘24

With cool weather, colorful trees, and sunny days, fall is the best time to hike, explore nature, and get outside. Check out the following nearby locations this season!

  1. Ramapo Lake Trailhead

Enjoy the wildlife of Ramapo Lake, an abandoned mansion, and view of the New York City skyline at Ramapo Lake Trailhead. Located on 67 Skyline Dr, Oakland, there’s miles of clean trails and raw rock faces to climb. Bring a (waste-free) picnic lunch and sit atop the yellow trail’s peak and look out across the fall foliage. 

  1. Harriman State Park

Harriman State Park is in New York state, spanning multiple counties and 44,000 acres. It’s the second largest state park in New York, with 31 lakes and reservoirs. A great challenge for weathered hikers is the Elk Pen Loop Trail, which is 7.5 miles, and will take a little under 4 hours to complete. This scenic hike includes a pretty pond lookout, a lemon squeeze, and a view from Surebridge Mountain. Harriman State Park is located on 54 Seven Lakes Dr, Sloatsburg, NY and is a 20-minute drive from Oakland. 

  1. Norvin Green State Forest

Norvin Green State Forest is a nature reserve managed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Lake Sonoma offers great canoeing, fishing, kayaking, and boating adventures. For bird watchers, Norvin Forest is a paradise of all Northeastern birds. Spot Cardinals in the winter, Goldfinches in the spring and summer, Blue Jays in the autumn, and mockingbirds, starlings, and sparrows year-round! Norvin Green State Forest is also a short 20-minute drive from Oakland.

  1. Palisades Interstate Park

Located along the Hudson River shorefront, the Palisades Interstate Park holds 2,500 acres of woodland with 30 miles of trails. The Palisades is considered a National Historic Landmark and National Natural Landmark. Grill and picnic by the water, ride a bike on paved trails, kayak in the Hudson, go fishing and crabbing in the bay, hike the rugged trails, and check out the State Line Lookout. The Palisades is a 30-minute drive from Oakland.