Highland Lakes State Park is a 3211-acre forest, comprised of dense natural canopies and three different bodies of water. The area was once the home of a sawmill, the foundations of which guests can still see while hiking. Highland Lakes State Park is perfect for hiking, due to its over 3000 acres of pristine, untouched scenery. These areas contain natural trails that are marked out at regular intervals by blue and yellow blazes.
The most difficult of these, Multonah Trail, is just over three miles long and offers several steep inclines and slopes as you circle Minnewaska Lake. None of these trails are more than four miles in length, but guests would be wise to check out the free trail maps that are available at the park's central office. Pet owners are free to bring along their companions, as long as they keep them leashed up, and take care of any trash their pets might leave on the ground.
Camping is allowed here, but guests who are looking to have an overnight stay must obtain an overnight permit from the New York State Parks Commission before they can pitch their tent. They only off-limit areas in the park are the northern edges of Lake Minnewaska, where the public boat slips are located. As this is entirely a primitive camping experience, make sure you bring everything you need to be comfortable through the night. Clean up any messes you might make, and do your best to leave an area the way you found it.
Dogs are allowed to stay with overnight guests but must be restrained throughout the night. Horseback riding is offered in Highland Lakes State Park, but by permit only. For more info on bridge regulations, and how to obtain your riding permit, make sure to visit the New York State Parks' website. If you're a fan of fish, you're in luck. Lake Minnewaska hosts over 15 species of freshwater fish to try and catch. Make sure to bring all necessary gear as no shops exist within the park. Canines can accompany guests on the shore but are barred from entering the water.