Distance: 1.6 miles
Skill Level: easy
Elevation Gain: 100′
Type of Hike: loop
Trail Condition: rocky, boardwalk, trail, gravel
Wow Factor: long boardwalk on the lake
How to get there: From the Taconic, take the exit for 134 West. Merge onto 134 and go a very short distance. Turn right on Spring Valley Rd. Follow it down and to the left until you reach the large nature center. Park in the main lot on the right or the overflow across the street.
Address: 1600 Spring Valley Rd #1, Ossining, NY 10562
From the main parking lot, head to the furthest corner from the road and main building. There is a wooden door to the exclosure. Head through it and down the hill.
At the bottom, turn left. Check out the view from the platform and see if there are any animals.
Keep following the trail as it leaves the exclosure and follows the lake. There is a short pink path to the left that takes you up to the top for some higher views of the lake. Take either trail.
Cross over the long, floating boardwalk.
Enter back into the trees and turn right. Keep following the lake all the way around, sticking to the right when the trail splits. There is a section with lots of downed trees that kids like to play on.
There is a gazebo that juts over the water and a great place to spot turtles and wildlife. Once you’ve reached the gazebo, keep following the gravel road.
You will pass another door to the exclosure but you want to keep straight. Head up the hill until you reach the nature center. If you look left, there is an outdoor bird section. They have several kinds of birds that can’t be released and a rabbit hutch. Once you’re done there, head inside and check out the ones inside. They have turtles, snakes, ferrets, fish and more.
Facilities: restrooms when nature center is open