The town of Woodstock lies within the borders of Catskill Park, surrounded by mountains and Mother Nature. The community has long been an arts center, and hosts several art colonies and a playhouse, crafts shops and classes, and many famous painters and musicians. It is also a tourist destination because of its placement in the Catskills, and is a very dog-friendly town, welcoming pups at most shops, restaurants and other venues. And should your pup become ill or injured while in the area, Woodstock has one veterinary hospital, with several others in the adjoining towns. They will get her up and wagging in no time.
The Woodstock Dog Park is unique in that it is built around many trees and maintains a pawsome woods-like setting instead of being just a big open space. The pups love running and darting through the trees on the mulched wood surface, and there are lots of natural and man-made obstacles and agility equipment to challenge them. Because of the trees, the park is shady and comfortable in summer, and humans are welcome to bring water and bowls for their pupsters, although they would prefer no toys or treats to avoid conflicts. The park provides waste bags and receptacles, and its 2 large areas for small and big doggos are safety-gated. This is a furry-fun park! Arf!
Whether you live in Woodstock or are visiting, you’ll find lots to do in the outdoors that will please both you and your fur-pup!
The Woodstock Town Center is home to the Woodstock Waterfall Park, a small dog-friendly pocket park along Tannery Brook at the site of a former leather tanneery. Its long and narrow expanse hosts paved walkways and benches where you and your fur-baby can stroll or have a sit to enjoy a picnic lunch, or watch the water flowing over the rocks at the drop in the brook. The Town Center also hosts the Village Green, the pup-friendly and popular center of activity in town, where you’ll see individuals playing their music, to protests, to impromptu dancing. Made of contrasting granite blocks and benches, it sits in the center of the town’s major intersection where there are no traffic lights, but the cars and trucks passing by are schooled in the sanctity of the space. Several restaurants that provide outdoor tables for doggy-dates ring the downtown as well, such as the Garden Café, Landau Grill and Cucina.
If you’re looking for a place to camp with your fur-pup in Woodstock, this neighborhood is where you should start. It hosts the Kenneth L. Wilson Campground, where dogs on leash are welcome everywhere except the beach, inside buildings and group picnic areas. With such amenities as campsite picnic tables and grills, restrooms and showers, the campground is as comfortable as it can be to sleep outside in the fresh mountain air. The park also features boating/paddling on the lake, hiking on their many nature trails, and inner-tubing on the river, all with your fur-buddy in tow. And when you and Fido have had enough camp-side food, you can get a real meal cooked by someone else at the Bear Café in nearby Bearsville, which serves upscale cuisine in a lovely streamside setting with outdoor seating pawrfect for a dinner date with your furry bestie. Bone appetit!
Hurley is a small community south of Woodstock that encompasses the Ashokan Reservoir, a large, man-made lake surrounded by the Catskills. The reservoir features 2 pup-friendly paved causeways that curve around it for 3 miles, providing walkers, bicyclists and wheelchair users a pawrrific place for exercise and some stunning views of the mountains and the beautiful lake itself. Paddling in a canoe or kayak with your fur-pal provides serenity and stillness, but be aware there is no swimming or diving allowed. The reservoir’s shoreline measures some 44 miles, and features beaches as well as wooded spots to enjoy the views and perhaps do some fishing. Dogs can’t splash or swim in the water, but there is an abundance of wildlife for her to smell, hear and see here.
This neighborhood in Kingston, southwest of Woodstock, is home to the Bluestone Wild Forest. This 3,000-acre park features forest, ponds, a lake, old quarries and hiking trails that will offer you and your fur-baby hours of outdoor adventures. Open year-round, it’s perfect for hiking in spring, summer and fall, and cross-country skiing in winter. Trailhead parking on Route 28 leads to 3 looped trails with varying skill requirements, and you’ll pass by vernal pools, along a ridge and through upland forest if you manage all 3. Taken together in one hike, they total about 5 miles. Pawsome! There is also developed access to Onteora Lake, where you and the doggo can paddle, then enjoy a casual lunch or snack at the picnic area nearby. The trail to Onteora Lake is handicap-accessible, as well. Woofderful!
Just north of Woodstock lies Tannersville, where you’ll find the Indian Head Wilderness, an 11,500-acre preserve featuring rugged terrain. The area contains 8 trails, the longest of which is Devil’s Path at 13 miles, the shortest being only .3 mile. Devil’s Path will take you across the summits of 5 major peaks where you and your fur-pup will be treated to spectacular views of the Catskills and the lakes within them. Indian Head features 10 primitive tent campsites and 3 lean-to wilderness sites where you and Fido can spend the night, or you can camp in any spot that is 150 feet from any trail, road or lake. In the winter, the trails lend themselves to cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Be aware that hunting is permitted inside the park during various seasons, so check the dates and come prepared with plenty of blaze orange for you and your furry friend.