Bear Mountain State Park is situated between the Taconic "micro range" of mountains and the shoreline of the Hudson River. Due to its fortuitous location, the park provides visitors with incredible views of both wildlife and the surrounding landscape. Packed with resources and activities, there is something here for everyone to enjoy.
A special addition to this particular park is the Trailside Museums and Zoo. There are actually four different museums sprinkled throughout Bear Mountain State Park, all of which focus on different pieces of park history. If you're looking for a general story of the park itself, officials suggest starting with the History Museum which covers the beginnings of human occupation in the area.
Also available is the Geology Museum which focuses more on natural history, the Nature Study Museum which also doubles as one of two zoos, and the Herpetology House, which specializes in aquatic and reptilian education. Dog owners should know that all indoor structures are off limits to canines.
Due to it being directly adjacent to the water, aquatic activities abound at Bear Mountain State Park with boat rental, public swimming, and paddleboarding happening constantly during the summer months. Due to the frigid winters in New York, this park also hosts ice skating during the winter months. Skating hours tend to vary as they depend on the climate, but updated hours can be found at the NY Parks' official website.
There are over four miles of hiking trails inside of the park boundaries, and they're all open to you and your dog. These trails are only marked at the trailheads, so make sure to do your homework before hopping onto a trail that's too extensive to handle. Cycling and horseback riding are also both popular on these trails. Winter cyclists are warned to stick to the predetermined bike trails, as other unmarked avenues are regularly inundated with ice and other debris.