High Rock Park is known as the gem of the Staten Island Greenbelt for its miles of trails through tranquil and well-preserved woods. The park is accessible by public transit, with a few bus stops and a train station within a half-mile of park entrances on Summit Avenue and Nevada Avenue. Just remember that your pup will need to be in a carrier to ride on the bus or train. You will also need to bring your own waste bags and water. If you have a car, you can park in the lot at the end of Nevada Avenue. Trailheads to all of the park's trails are located off of the main access road that continues from the lot.
Ninety-acre High Rock Park features six distinct trails where you and your dog can connect with the wilderness. The 0.25-mile Lavender Trail loops around Loosestrife Swamp and is a great place to spot aquatic flora and fauna including skunk cabbage, jewelweed, black water snakes, snapping turtles, and spring peepers. The Green Trail, also known as the Gretta Moulton Trail, winds for 0.75 miles through kettle ponds and an upland forest where you'll find a grove of persimmon trees. The 0.55-mile Red Dot Trail runs across a fire road and continues through dense forests and stream-crossed wetlands. The Paw Trail, named for its pupularity with four-legged friends, is 0.5 miles long. It connects with the Red Dot Trail and ends at Walker Pond. It also intersects with the Blue Trail, a twelve-mile-long Greenbelt trail that continues in either direction beyond High Rock Park. You'll also find a section of another Greenbelt trail, the eight-mile Yellow Trail, in the northern part of the park.
The landscapes of High Rock Park were shaped by glaciers during the Ice Age. Large boulders, rocky outcroppings of serpentinite, and kettle holes reflect the ways advancing and receding ice sculpted this hilly terrain. Over 85 percent of the park is under tree cover, making it a great place to spot local and migrating birds.
To enjoy a pristine natural experience, bring your dog to High Rock Park. You're sure to go home refreshed after exploring its many beautiful trails.