You can get to this trail from NYC by taking the Shortline bus to Woodbury Commons and asking the driver to stop at Schunnemunk. Once you get to the park, you'll get to run through a lovely meadow full of wildflowers before entering the forest. The route climbs to offer some nice views all along the ridge before descending to return to the bus stop.
The railroad is active, so don't get hit please.
If you are taking the Shortline bus to this run, make sure you ask the bus driver to stop at Schunnemunk. The park is a little after the Woodbury Commons so all the shoppers will be off already. The bus stop is just a sign on the side of the road so when you are returning be sure to flag the bus down - they are not used to stopping here and ours locked the breaks up stopping for us.
From the bus stop, you'll have to run along the road until you come to the parking area at the trailhead. If you drove, this is where you can park.
From here, the first section on the Jessup Trail
and Sweet Clover Trail
is very flat and meanders through a lovely meadow that was packed full of flowers when we went. Head left, staying on the Sweet Clover Trail
. Next, you'll enter the forest and cross an active train track before joining the black-blazed Dark Hallow Trail
This trail climbs quickly to the top of the mountain. Watch for rattlesnakes - the park doesn't get a ton of visitors so we encountered one warming itself on the trail even though we only got there around 11am.
Once on top of the mountain, head south on the yellow-blazed Jessup Trail
. Keep an eye out for the Blue and White connector trail that heads down and west through the valley and back up onto the lower ridge to the west. You can then head north on the orange-blazed Western Ridge Trail
This trail follows the ridge and offers some nice views. Head northeast on the red-blazed Barton Swamp Trail
until it quickly meets up with the yellow-blazed Jessup Trail
again. The yellow, Jessup Trail
will head down the mountain to the railroad tracks again. Stay on the Jessup Trail
out of the forest, back through the meadow, and to your car or the bus.