Congress Park • 315 Broadway
Located in the heart of Saratoga Springs, Historic Congress Park is a beautifully landscaped area featuring the National Historic Museum at Canfield Casino, the Carousel, Veterans Memorial and sculptures like “Spit & Spat”. You can pick up a free self-guided tour of the park at the Visitors Center.
Moreau Lake • 605 Old Saratoga Road • 793-0511
Moreau Lake State Park’s lake lies amid hardwood forests, pine stands and rocky ridges. Shady groves of trees shelter picnic grounds and a pavilion overlooking the lake. Wooded campgrounds are quiet and secluded, offering facilities for group campers, as well as tent and trailer sites. The sandy beach, nature, hiking and cross-country ski trails, opportunities for boating, fishing and ice fishing, and proximity to the Saratoga Springs and Lake George areas make the park attractive to visitors. A wooden pavilion with a 120-person capacity and three canvas tents, which can accommodate from 35-50 people, may be reserved on a daily basis. In the summer, beach lounges, beach umbrella and fishing gear can be rented. In the winter, snowshoes are available for rent daily.
Railroad Run • Between Congress Street and West Circular
Presently, Railroad Run connects West Circular Street to Congress Avenue along a north-south former rail bed to the west of the Price Chopper Plaza on Route 50. This half mile dual-trail (one side is stone dust, the other side is asphalt) is enjoyed by people of all ages for a wide range of activities including walking, bicycling, rollerblading, and skate boarding.
Saratoga Spa State Park • 19 Roosevelt Drive • 584-2535
Saratoga Spa State Park offers a wide variety of walking and hiking trails. The flat and mostly gentle terrain of the Park offer easy walking. Stream-side trails have much to offer the naturalist or casual hiker. Trail maps are available at the Park Office. Dogs are allowed on trails on leash only. For the Winter trail user, Spa Park offers many miles of groomed and ungroomed trails to cross-country ski or snowshoe. Winter use trail maps are also available at the Park Office.
Skidmore North Woods • North Broadway
The entrance to the North Woods is by the Falstaff Parking Lot just off North Broadway. They allow walking, hiking, running, cross country skiing, snow shoeing, and dog walking. There are no bikes allowed on any of these trails.
Spring Run Trail • Begins at Congress Park
Spring Run Trail is an off-road, two-mile pedestrian and bicycle path situated on an old railroad bed along the fault line of historic natural springs. In a sense we are recreating the historic “woodland path” that had existed in this area for much of the 1800′s. The Spring Run Trail will be paved and provide safe, off-road pedestrian, bicycle and handicapped accessible access from downtown Saratoga Springs to Weibel Road. The Trail links downtown to High Rock Park (the site of the summer Farmer’s market), to the City’s indoor recreational facilities, and the commercial area surrounding Wilton Mall.
Visitor Center • 297 Broadway • 587-3241
Great place to stop, even for local residents. Learn all about our fine city, from the geology, The Pavillions, the Water Industry, to History, Architecture and People. You can find maps for self-guided tours of East Side neighborhood, North Broadway, Historic Congress Park and the mineral waters. They also offer walking tours through Historic Congress Park everyday from 10:30-12pm for $5 per person, with kids under 12 Free!
Yaddo • 312 Union Avenue • 584-6092
The gardens consist of both a rose garden and a rock garden. Volunteers of the Yaddo Garden Association do all phases of garden work. The Yaddo Gardens are open to the public seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to dusk.
The gardens feature a variety of plants which peak throughout the season. The roses begin to bloom mid-June and are at peak from about the third week of June through July and then peak again mid to late August. The rock garden is in bloom mid-June through mid-September. The remainder of the estate is private and may be visited only on special occasions.
Yaddo, founded in 1900 by the financier Spencer Trask and his wife Katrina, herself a poet, is an artists’ community located on a 400-acre estate in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Read more about Letterboxing in our post, Real Life Scavenger Hunt with Letterboxing!
Following the clues to find a hidden box has made exploration of PLAN’s preserves more fun. ”Letterboxes” have been hidden on eight preserves. By following clues posted on our website, you can seek out the hidden letterboxes and learn something about these preserves at the same time.
Letterboxing is an ancient hobby that began in England in 1854, and made its way into the United States in the 1998. Saratoga P.L.A.N has put its own spin on an ancient tradition. You can obtain a “passpost” from the website and when you have visited 5 of the 8, win a free t-shirt!
1. Bog Meadow Trail • Route 29 • 587-5554
Bog Meadow Brook Nature Trail is one of Saratoga P.L.A.N.’s earliest accomplishments. This two mile trail was established in 1993 by dedicated volunteers and members and follows the path of an abandoned railway. Three distinct wetland communities are present along the trail and visitors are likely to see a variety of wildlife throughout the seasons. The trail, which includes an extensive boardwalk system, may be enjoyed on foot, snowshoes or cross-country skis.
The trail is two miles long, with designated parking areas on each end. The directions below will take you to the Rt. 29 entrance. To get to the other end, proceed east on Rt. 29/Lake Avenue past the trail head. At the first traffic light, make a right on Staffords Bridge Rd. Take your first right onto Meadowbrook Rd. The parking lot is 1/4 mile on your right. The trail starts about 50 yards further up the road from the parking area.
To the Rt. 29 entrance: From downtown Saratoga Springs: Take Lake Avenue/Rt. 29 east from town. Go through the traffic light at Weibel Avenue. The trail entrance will be about 300 yards on your right.
From out of town: From exit 14 of I-87, head west on Union Avenue, towards Saratoga Springs. At the first traffic light make a right onto Henning Road. At the intersection and light with Lake Avenue/Rt.29, make a right. Go through the traffic light at Weibel Avenue. The trail will be about 300 yards on your right.
|33 acre preserve. Contains 1 mile of rugged, marked looping trails, and lies close to nearby Zim Smith Trail. Known for it’s views of Great Blue Heron rookery.The entire property had been an active farm, with fields for crops and grazing. The former owners used the land only for passive recreation since 1955. This property is an important link in the Ballston Creek Valley Greenway and Wildlife Corridor and lies just to the north and west of Shenentaha Park, which offers a connection point to the countywide multi-use Zim Smith Trail.The old farm fields on this land have re-grown into beautiful forests, while occasional older growth trees can be found along the several old rock walls. A power line runs southeast to northwest and separates the section of the property along East Line Road from the remainder of the preserve. The western and northern edges of the property border Ballston Creek and a large wetland. The preserve is mostly forested; trees are primarily mid-successional species. The wetland on the western edge of the property contains a great blue heron rookery. The land is mostly flat with a change in elevation of about 30 feet.The trails are seasonally wet and appropriate footwear is recommended.Directions:From Saratoga Springs, take Route 50 south (Ballston Ave.) toward Ballston Spa for about 6 miles. Go through the village and turn left at the top of the hill onto East High Street (NY-67). Go about 1 mile, through the stoplight, and turn right onto East Line Road (aka Rte 82).Continue on East Line for about ½ mile , and park at Shenentaha Park. Walk to the entrance just 22 yards up Eastline Rd – you will see a Saratoga P.L.A.N. sign.From I87, take Exit 12. From 87 North, turn right onto Route 67. From 87 South, turn left. Drive approximately 1.5 miles and turn left onto Eastline Road (aka Route 82). Follow directions above from here.|
This preserve contains public recreational and fishing access to the Kayaderosseras Creek via a trail system. Parking is currently roadside only. Several trails wind around the embankment totaling approximately 1 mile, but this is not a hiking preserve, it offers more of a leisurely walk among diverse flora along the creekside. The Friends of the Kayaderosseras are developing a canoe kayak launch just upstream on the Boice Property.
This property is a protected 1,220 feet of Creek frontage and about 2.5 acres of important riparian wetlands which contribute to the Creek’s important cold-water fishery. Many species of flora and fauna are documented on this property which is largely forested with successional soft and hardwoods. Older hemlocks line the creekside.
From I-87 (aka The Northway) north and south: Get off at Exit 14 and take a right off ramp onto Union Ave (aka Route 9P) and head toward the City of Saratoga Springs. Drive 1.5 miles on Union Ave (30 mph speed limit – watch out for horses crossing) and take a right onto Circular Street at the T intersection. Drive one block and take a left onto Spring Street at the light. Drive past Congress Park on your left (watch out for pedestrians) and take a right onto Broadway. Careful here: Immediately get into left lane and take first left onto State Hwy 29 / Washington St. After about seven miles, you’ll reach the hamlet of Rock City Falls. Turn left onto Rock City Rd / County Route 49 and follow this road south approx. 2.5 miles. At the fork in the road, stay to the right. At the fork the road becomes West Milton Road (but is still County Route 49). Go over the bridge, and approx. 200 yards ahead look for a blue mail box on the right. Pull off the road just before or after this mailbox (the mailbox is for 220 West Milton Road). If you pass a 90 degree turn in the road and a trailer park on your left, then you’ve gone too far. The preserve entrance is on the opposite (left) side of the road and is to the right of the grey cape house and garage.
The nature trail is located at Saratoga National Golf Club’s southeast end, and opened during the summer of 2001. The half-mile trail is an easy walk through a lovely forested area. The trail’s end supplies visitors with a beautiful view of the Lake Lonely northern shore. Here, users can also enjoy a platform seating and viewing area to rest or enjoy a picnic lunch. The trail is open year round and is perfect for young children or those who prefer shorter hikes.
Saratoga National Golf Club is located on Route 9N (Union Avenue) about 1 mile east of the Northway I87. A special parking area for the trail is located on Union Avenue just east of the Golf Club entrance. Look for the large white pillars and a black gate. The trail starts by going through the gate and following the path around to the left.
In 2002, the family of Dr. Milton Levine donated 150 acres to Saratoga PLAN. The land is beautiful mixed hardwood forest with a history of past agriculture and logging visible through stone walls and roads. The property is easily walkable along Taber Road, an old town road.
From Saratoga Springs, take Rte. 29 West for 12 miles to Barkersville Rd. (Rte 16). The Waterwheel Village Store is on the far right corner. Turn right here. In Barkersville (2.3 miles) keep right on Rte. 16 and in 0.4 miles, turn left on Glenwild Rd. In 1.4 miles, turn left on Center Line Rd. In approximately 0.8 miles, you will see the kiosk for the Levine Preserve on the left at the old Taber Rd. street sign. Park on Center Line Rd.
Teacher, doctor of medicine, naval veteran of WWII, environmentalist, naturalist, mountain climber, fifty year member of the Adirondack Mountain Club, and author, Dr. Orra Phelps developed a love of nature as a child exploring the Adirondacks. The Orra Phelps Nature Preserve was a family treasure where Dr. Phelps enjoyed solitude, conducted family nature walks, and endeavored to preserve rare plant species of New York State.
Deeded to Saratoga PLAN in 1996 by Mary Arakelian, niece of Orra Phelps, the preserve is an 18.03 acre area containing wetlands, stream, and woodland habitats. Approximately 30 of the 40 species of ferns found in New York State can be spotted among the preserve’s flora.
Take the Northway (I-87) to Exit 16. Turn west on Ballard road. After 2 miles, cross Route 9, then turn left (south) on Parkhurst Road. Go one more mile to the preserve parking lot on the left. The trailhead is just beyond the public parking lot.
The site is an active Woodcock management area with early successional species and is a proposed environment education/recreation site. Woodland and forested wetland habitat with abundant wildlife (Deer, Coyote, Red-tailed Hawk, Barred Owl, Pileated Woodpecker) and several very old Swamp White Oak trees.Saratoga PLAN stewards are currently re-routing trails around the beaver flooded areas in the western portion of this Preserve. A short hike is possible to the open field area from the parking lot. Parking for 2 cars.
Directions: West of Tanner Road, south of Route 146A, and east of Waite Road. Access to site is off of Tanner Road, just south of 740 Tanner Road.
8. Galway Nature Preserve • 2519 Crane Road