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Not So Urban Athletics: Hike the Giant Stairs

  • Sep 28, 2013 · 10:30 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

It has been a minute since I've done one of my favorite local hikes. I need to fix that. The Giant Stairs is a unique intermediate hiking experience in the Palisades Interstate Park, the natural area just North of the George Washington Bridge. This very scenic 3.5 mile loop hike descends the Palisades cliffs, follows a challenging, rocky path along the Hudson River, passes a scenic waterfall, and climbs to reach a panoramic viewpoint over the river. I estimate the hike will take about 4 hours depending on the length of our stops.

A $3.00 organization fee will be collected at this event, your host is in the running for hardest working person on meetup.

The important stuff ...

• You should dress for physical activity and for the weather but in layers, preferably in non-cotton clothing, wear hiking boots or trail shoes (I wouldn't recommend sneakers but that is at your discretion).

• Bring 1 or 2 liters of fluid and have a packed lunch and/or snacks with you prior.

• This is an intermediate-level hike and I recommend that attendees be in decent cardiovascular shape -- being a triathlete isn't necessary but "exercise" shouldn't be a four-letter word to you. We'll be scrambling over every rock and boulder we see so if that isn't your thing, keep it moving.

• Rain cancels the hike. Check your email the morning of the meetup for any last minute updates.

• No guests allowed, sorry.

Directions ...

You can get there via public transportation or private vehicle.

1) Bus -- Rockland Coach’s Number 9 bus, which departs from the Port Authority Bus Terminal (42nd Street, Gate 18) 9:15 AM, stops at Bridge Plaza in Fort Lee (a number of other bus lines connect at the Bridge Plaza stop from points in New Jersey), then travels up U.S. Route 9W to the state line lookout and on to Rockland County. Fare is $7.80 one way (cash only) and you can pay on the bus. Get off at the state line lookout @ approximately 9:55 AM (ask/tell the driver to announce the exact stop when you board the bus), which is also the entrance to Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, a research facility run by Columbia University. From here, simply follow the old concrete highway east. After about an easy 1.5 mile walk you will arrive at Lookout Inn (a refreshment stand and gift shop) and “Point Lookout,” the highest point on the Palisades Cliffs in New Jersey (elevation 532 feet), with panoramic views of the Hudson River Valley north, east, and south. We will all meet at 10:30 AM in front of the Lookout Inn refreshment stand to begin the hike (see photo below).

Bus schedule: http://www.coachusa.com/CoachUsaAssets/files/97/route09.pdf

2) Drive -- Take the Palisades Interstate Parkway North from the George Washington Bridge. Continue for 1.7 miles beyond Exit 2, and turn right at a sign for the State Line Lookout. Follow the access road for about half a mile until it ends at a large parking lot near the lookout. (If you are coming from the North on the Parkway, bear left just beyond Exit 3 and follow the signs for the lookout). We will all meet at 10:30 AM in front of the Lookout Inn refreshment stand to begin the hike (see photo below).  Please post if you will be driving and can give a ride to how many passengers, and from where in the comments box when you RSVP. Passengers, please contact your driver beforehand to work out the details and as a courtesy should pick up the tabs for gas/tolls.

 

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  • Mercedes

    This experience was challenging and rewarding. Kevin, thank you again for a funtastik event :-)

    1 · September 30, 2013

  • Emmy

    As always a challenging kick butt experience. A year later and the love for this place continues.

    1 · September 30, 2013

  • Dean

    Man, what a great day........real solid people, very cool vibe and a fantastic way to get away from the city for a while......

    Best part of my weelend

    1 · September 30, 2013

  • Jose

    Thank you once again, this hike was the highlight of my week. Can't wait to do it again!

    1 · September 29, 2013

  • Eat Love H.

    Kevin....I love you. Lol. But seriously...your hikes, the vibe, the tonality you set, the people you attract, the regulars, the fresh faces, ...all of it, I enjoy myself immensely. THANK U. This was a cool hike.

    2 · September 28, 2013

    • Kevin

      Linda, you've officially earned a spot on my PR team. Thank you! But like I told you, this hike was going to be one you'd be disappointed if you missed. Glad you made it. :)

      1 · September 29, 2013

  • Dee D.

    Due to my late arrival I didn't join the hike but I had a great time hanging out overlooking the Hudson river & met up w/ the group after the hike. :-)

    1 · September 29, 2013

  • David T

    Fantastic

    2 · September 28, 2013

  • David T

    All I can say is it's always a great experience hiking with Kevin and the many activities. Thanks Mr Orange whistle

    2 · September 28, 2013

  • David T

    If anybody can pick me up on either side of GWB let me know. Thanks

    September 27, 2013

    • David T

      Tonight or in the morning ?

      September 27, 2013

    • Bolaji

      Hi David I can pick you up on the Fort Lee side @ 10.15

      September 27, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    So sorry, last minute family obligation. Have fun, everyone!

    September 27, 2013

  • Mercedes

    Will anyone be taking public transportation?

    September 23, 2013

    • Mercedes

      Jose that sounds like a plan I sent you my tel #, keep in touch :-)

      September 26, 2013

    • Robin

      I have a ride with Emily so I'll see you guys up there!

      September 27, 2013

  • Emily

    Leaving from Cobble Hill BK, have room for one more. I have to get back take to the city by 5pm, so I might have to cut out on post-hike activities.

    September 27, 2013

  • Robin

    Anybody coming through Manhattan. Hook me up! :)

    September 24, 2013

  • Kim

    I need a ride from Queens =]

    September 16, 2013

    • Kim

      Sure. What time?

      September 24, 2013

    • Charles "George" R.

      Sorry, I can only really take 2 passengers. I have a small car:)

      September 24, 2013

  • Kevin

    My friends, 'tis a fair warning for all the brave souls that have signed up for this adventure. There will be no easy trekking on this hike ... if a rock appears before us, we are going to scramble it. If a stream crosses our path, we are going to stomp through it. If there is anything we see that is the opposite of easy, we are going to do it. With that said, all those here weak of resolve, now is your chance to hit the eject button. Exit, stage left ...

    3 · September 23, 2013

  • JE T.

    I just realized that I cannot make it (I am on waiting list) so skip me if a place opens. Have a great hike!

    September 23, 2013

  • Dean

    Just to let everyone know I will be driving in from Brooklyn - W'burg ~

    September 16, 2013

    • Dean

      Give me a call so we can confirm our ride. We will be traveling in with Anshul and I may try to add another person - it will be tight, though fun.

      My thinking is to meet in W'burg........

      Give a call......

      Besides Anshul, I'm not sure whose number I have.

      Dean

      September 20, 2013

    • Dee D.

      Hi Dean - I emailed my info to you a few days ago. I'll call you tomorrow to make sure you have my #. Good Night & thanks again for the ride

      September 21, 2013

  • Gwen

    I'm so excited...I'm going!!!! Does anyone have room for two more in their cars? We'll split any costs incurred.

    September 18, 2013

  • Kevin

    Peeps, don't forget, this hike is a short bus ride away out of Port Authority.

    September 18, 2013

  • Mercedes

    Hello, I also need a ride, anyone passing Astoria Queens? Will help with expenses :-)

    September 17, 2013

    • Eat Love H.

      And I too am Astoria, but can travel. Thanx

      September 17, 2013

  • Jose

    I need a ride too, wouldn't mind chipping in for expenses. Worst case scenario, I am a Zipcar member if anybody would like to join me that'll be great! I could fit 3 - 4 people, we could split the bill, I'll depart from Midtown Manhattan. If anybody is "D" let me know!

    September 16, 2013

  • Emmy

    Hi I need a ride from 120th and 2nd ave in Manhattan?

    September 14, 2013

  • derrick b.

    I LL NEED A RIDE I LIVE IN CLIFTON

    September 14, 2013

  • David T

    I will need a ride and I can meet you on either side of GWB. Will chip in for expenses.

    August 21, 2013

    • Bolaji

      Hi David. I live on the Fort Lee side of the GWB. Can give you a ride if you meet me on the NJ side

      August 30, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Anyone coming from Queens?

      1 · September 4, 2013

  • Emmy

    Need a ride

    September 3, 2013

  • David T

    Thanks Bolaji, will meet you on the Jersey side of GWB.

    August 30, 2013

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