The Hudson Valley is a bicycle rider's playground. Our backyard boasts dozens of mountains, hundreds of trail miles and thousands of acres of parkland.

With all the weekend warriors in our midst, you might find yourself a bit intimidated by the outdoor recreational options out there. Not to worry though: You don't have to be a serious mountain biker to enjoy cruising many of the carriage roads and trails available to us.

We spoke with Christian Favata, owner of Favata's TRT Bicycles in Rosendale, to find out where the best Hudson Valley biking trails for new riders and casual enthusiasts are.

 
Wallkill Valley Rail Trail
 

Really nice views, it's pretty much flat and almost anybody can ride and enjoy it

The Wallkill valley Rail Trail is 22 miles of primarily gravel and packed dirt trail running from Wallkill to Kingston.

"It runs right along the Shawangunk Ridge. Really nice views, it's pretty much flat and almost anybody can ride and enjoy it," Favata said.

The trail runs through the Village of New Paltz and close to the Rosendale Business District, allowing for a break at a local eatery or browsing the small businesses in those areas.

Parking is available at 11 locations along the trail and access is free.

 
Mohonk Preserve
 

They have miles and miles of beautiful, old carriage roads that traverse up and down the mountain

The Mohonk Preserve protects over 8,000 acres along the Shawangunk Ridge in Ulster County. The area offers a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities from rock climbing to hiking to biking.

"They have miles and miles of beautiful, old carriage roads that traverse up and down the mountain," Favata said.

The Mohonk Preserve's carriage roads provide 30 miles for mountain bikers to enjoy, according to its website. The preserve connects with Minnewaska State Park and Mohonk Mountain House to provide bikers with access to even more mileage.

The Mohonk Preserve day fee is $17 for bikers. Regular visitors can also spring for the Mohonk Preserve PLUS+ Annual Membership for $95. Park access is available at any of the preserve's four trailheads. Arrive early on clear weekends to ensure you get a parking spot since the lots fill up quickly.

 
Minnewaska State Park
 

It's incredible how many miles of riding there are up there

Minnewaska State Park houses an incredible 23,000 acres in Ulster County. Like Mohonk Preserve, Minnewaska houses a section of the Shawangunk Ridge.

Minnewaska has three lakes and some 35 miles of carriage roads for biking, according to its website.

"You can do a really nice ride to one of the lakes, jump in, take a swim, hang out and then finish up your ride," Favata said. "It's incredible how many miles of riding there are up there."

Parking at Minnewaska State Park costs $10 per day. You can also purchase the Empire Passport for $65, giving you access to all New York State Parks.

 
The Marbletown O&W Rail Trail
 

It's very similar to the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail. It's very scenic

The Marbletown O&W Rail Trail might be the hidden gem of this list. The park features nearly 9 miles of gravel and packed dirt trail running from Stone Ridge to Hurley.

"It's very similar to the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail. It's very scenic," Favata said.

He noted that the trail committee is in the beginning steps of trying to open the trail further along to old Ontario & Western Railway, which ran through to Ellenville.

The rail trail offers four trailheads with free public access to the linear park.

 
Dutchess County Rail Trail
 

The Dutchess County Rail Trail is 13 miles of paved trail running from Hopewell Junction to the Highland side of the Walkway Over the Hudson.

"The riding over there is a little more urban but it's still really amazing and the views from the bridge are awesome," Favata said.

The Dutchess County Rail Trail includes six trailheads with parking and restrooms. The linear park is free and open to the public.


 

This post was sponsored by Favata's TRT Bicycles. Favata's TRT Bicycles is located at 1066 Route 32, Rosendale, N.Y. Favata's TRT Bicycles: family owned, rider focused.