Hike the Dickie Barre, Peters Kill and Awosting Falls Loop

7.8 miles  - Loop Trail

Added by Michael Martineau

Follow well-marked trails with panoramic views, leading to a 65-foot waterfall. This hike passes through both Minnewaska State Park Preserve and Monhonk Preserve.

This loop hike takes you to Awosting Falls (65 ft.), as well as to great  valley views along the ridge of Dickie Barre, and across Peters Kill, on the way.

Start out on West Trapps Connector Trail (yellow blazes) at the east end of the West Trapps parking lot (get their early because the lot will fill up quick). In 750 feet, turn left onto Shongum Path (red blazes), which will take you down rock outcrops, through a swampy area and over streams on plank bridges, and through dense forest. The trail ends at a gravel road, Old Minnewaska Trail. 

After turning left, here, cross a bridge over Coxing Kill. You will pass by the Split Rock crevice, to your right, which is a popular swimming hole in the summer. When you reach Clove Road, cross over to the Coxing parking lot and head left toward the kiosk. Nearby is the High Peters Kill Trail (light blue blazes), which you will follow for three miles.

After you cross over a wet patch of land (via narrow wooden planks) and a stream, the trail will start to pick up some elevation. At the junction with King's Lane Trail, turn left on the light blue-blazed trail, which will take you on a steeper climb into Monhonk Preserve. Just after the climb tapers, the trail will split, stay left on the light blue blazed trail– but wait! First venture to the right, along an unmarked trail, to reach a beautiful lookout above Trapps Ridge. This is truly a picturesque setting and a great place to stop for water or a snack.  

Once you've taken a breather, head back to High Peters Kill Trail (turning right at the end of the unmarked trail), climbing up to a pass between the Dickie Barre cliffs, then dropping down to an exposed rock ledge with pitch pines. The trail makes a sharp right and descends further, but beforehand you can make another stop to a lookout on the edge of the cliffs, straight head, with the Catskills on the horizon.

Back at the trail, turn left to get to Peters Kill, at the bottom of a steep descent. Here you will cross over a wooden bridge and then begin to climb again. Continuing to follow the light blue blazed trail, you eventually will reach a lookout above the valley, with views of Peters Kill and Dickie Barre. Then continue climbing along the ridge. 

When the trail terminates at Route 44/55, cross the road and follow the light blue-blazes to a parking area/welcoming hut. Keep left on a dirt road (which is currently being worked on) that runs parallel to the highway, and when you reach the entrance of the Minnewaska State Park Preserve, turn right.

After crossing a bridge over Peters Kill, turn left at Awosting Falls Carriage Road (red diamond blazes), which will take you the next 3.5 miles, including to Awosting Falls. The cascade drops into a wide, beautiful pool, framed by geometrically layered rock faces, to either side. Take some time to explore above and below the falls. There are some great trees at the base of the falls to set up a hammock. 

A half mile from the falls, the road comes up to Route 44/55. Keep right at the fork, then in another half mile, keep left at another fork. You will reenter Mohonk Preserve (here the road is renamed Trapps Road), and follow the path downward around a hairpin turn and cross over Coxing Kill. Follow the Carriage Road all the way to Trapps Bridge, crossing over Route 44/55, turn left and go down a set of steps to West Trapps Connector Trail (yellow blazes). Follow this back to the original parking lot.

Again, keep in mind that parking can be crowded – both the West Trapps lot and the Cox Parking lot will work, but if both are full you will need to park at the visitor center adding another mile to this hike. There can also be some highway noise on this hike, when the road parallels Route 44/55, but it is quite worthwhile, nevertheless.

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Overall rating: 

it's a beautiful place to visit but I wouldn't recommend it for young children (slippery rocks, high cliffs, long trails, etc.) also there is a fee to get into the actual park. and there are several trails that are VERY long so if you enjoy extremely long walks and nature than this is the place for you.

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