Nature March 21, 2018
This Hike Takes You To A Place New York’s Residents Left Behind
All of New York’s hiking trails are unique and have something different to offer, but around our state you can actually find quite a few hikes that will lead you to fascinating and abandoned places. Taking you down to Rockland County, this one moderate hike will bring you to one of our state’s most historic and forgotten about towns.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
With its history dating back all the way to the 17th century, the forgotten town of Doodletown, New York is one of the most underrated pieces of history that you can still hike to today.
A hamlet that falls within the town of Stony Point, visitors interested in exploring Doodletown today can check out the area now that it's part of Bear Mountain State Park.
There are quite a few ways to hike to the lost town, but most people trek along the Cornell Mine Trail and the 1777 East Trail from the intersection of Route 9W and Doodletown Brook.
After hiking through the woods to this secluded part of Rockland County, you'll start to see some of the over 30 informational signs that are placed all throughout Doodletown.
Each sign tells a quick story of the land you see before you, describing what was once here and it's significance to the town.
Most of Doodletown's homes and structures were completely demolished by 1970.
With Doodletown's historic stone schoolhouse being left untouched and standing to be used as a shelter for local hikers in the area until its unfortunate demolition in 1980 after dealing with a great amount of vandalism.
But today piece's of the town's history are still visible, with the Doodletown's cemeteries still intact and filled with graves that date back to centuries ago.
Hike through Doodletown and you'll be able to imagine what life was like here during the early 1920s when the town ultimately reached its peak.
At the height of the town's population, it had over 300 residents calling Doodletown home and 70 residential homes that had long been occupied by generations of families.
If you're looking for a hike that will fascinate you and teach you about a forgotten piece of history, then you'll want to plan a trip down to Doodletown ASAP!
So, how exactly did this town come to be demolished and taken over by nature? The story is one that is actually quite heartbreaking. Many of the families that occupied Doodletown had family ties dating back to the 18th century and had long called this little hamlet home. Sadly, the state became determined to take over the land and to make it part of Bear Mountain State Park. While many of the residents fought to keep their land and refused to sell their properties, eventually their hands were forced through eminent domain. Residents of Doodletown were completely gone by the mid-1960s, with nothing ever becoming of the land.
Did you know about Doodletown and the history behind it? For more hiking inspiration, take a look at these
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