Might 26, 2023 – Dover Plains, NY
Size: Roughly 1.5 miles
Max elevation: 518 ft.– complete elevation achieve roughly 153 ft.
Route sort: Out and Again
Map: Dover Stone Church Map
Map: Stone Church Path Map
Brochure: Dover Stone Church Customer’s Information
Designated parking heaps –
- Dover Elementary Faculty – (When Faculty is NOT in Session & after 3pm) Weekends and holidays. 9 Faculty St, Dover Plains, NY 12522
- Tabor-Wing Home – 3128 NY-22, Dover Plains, NY 12522
- 4 Brothers Pizza Inn – 3189 NY-22, Dover Plains, NY 12522
- Freshco 22 – 3156 NY-22, Dover Plains, NY 12522
There isn’t any public parking on property on or close to the right-of-way (driveway) off Route 22. Parking there could also be topic to ticketing & towing. The appropriate-of-way traverses personal property. Please be respectful.
I’ve been going to Stone Church for years and have at all times parked within the Freshco 22 lot. Please use widespread sense and park away from the entrance of the shops there. They generously enable parking of their lot, however don’t abuse the privilege by parking the place paying clients to the institution might park. The lot is sizeable so you may park the place you received’t be a hindrance to paying clients.
This 174-acre public protect, options greater than 4 miles of climbing trails resulting in a pure rock formation known as the Dover Stone Church. The “church” is shaped by a fissure within the metamorphic rock by way of which the Stone Church Brook flows, forming quite a lot of ledges and delightful cascades that descend right into a pool beneath. The outlet of the stream is thru a stately arch, which types the cathedral-like entrance, giving this particular attraction its title.
The Stone Church Brook, a tributary of the Ten Mile River, flows by way of and out the cavern entrance.
The primary reference to the Dover Stone Church comes from legend courting again to the mid 1600’s when Pequot sachem Sassacus who, along with his warriors, hid within the cave to flee seize and demise by the British Military.
The Historic Marker on Stone Church Lane has a typo. It ought to learn “New London” not “New Loudon.”
The recognition of the Stone Church dates again to the 1830’s, when 1000’s of holiday makers would come see this pure phenomenon and keep within the adjoining Stone Church Resort. The romantic nature of the Stone Church and the proximity to the lodge, made it a preferred marriage ceremony web site. The Stone Church captured the eye of Hudson River Faculty artist Asher B. Durand who depicted the location in his Grasp Drawing in 1847. It was additionally the topic of a e-book by Benson Lossing, an area historian, entitled The Dover Stone Church.
The safety of Dover Stone Church was the results of the mixed efforts of the Dutchess Land Conservancy (DLC), the City of Dover, the Mates of Dover Stone Church, and Dutchess County, who collectively raised the funds to purchase and protect the preliminary 58 acres in 2004. Since that point the DLC has labored with the City to safe a number of further parcels to enlarge the Protect to immediately’s 174 acres, to determine a tree-lined entrance from the Village. In 2015, three new trails had been blazed and opened to the general public.
The Dover Stone Church property is listed on the Nationwide Register of Historic Websites and Locations.
In the present day, the Dover Stone Church Protect is a well-liked native attraction, and a vacationer vacation spot spot.
- The unique Stone Church Cave Path (0.2 mile from first footbridge), whereas usually simple, follows carefully alongside the Stone Church Brook, and the rocks are sometimes moist and slippery. Excessive water might cowl stepping-stones throughout wet durations.
New trails embrace two offering “lollipop loop” hikes:
- Purple Path – 1.0 mile, loop from trailhead
- Yellow Path – 1.0 mile, loop from trailhead
- Blue Path – 1.5 mile, out-and-back from trailhead
That is extra a nice stroll somewhat than a hike, though the path alongside the gorge to the cave, is a bit rocky and may be moist at instances. A pair of waterproof climbing boots is a good suggestion when visiting.
I’ve been to this scenic spot extra instances than I can depend. It’s merely a beautiful place to spend just a little time at. It may be crowded at instances, particularly on weekends. On this go to, we arrived round midday on a Friday, main as much as Memorial Day weekend. I used to be pleasantly surpised that we had been the one souls there. On our manner again, after spending just a little time there, we handed a pair, then a household heading down the treelined path. Regardless, it’s merely a wonderous place to go to anytime of 12 months.
This quick, out and again hike, solely covers the route from the Freshco 22 parking zone, to the cave and again.
As you may see by the graph beneath, there’s not a lot elevation achieve on this hike.
This hike begins within the parking zone of Freshco 22. Stroll out onto Mill Road and head west in the direction of Route 22. If you get to the intersection, fastidiously cross the road and switch left. In a brief distance, you’ll see a blue and yellow Historic Marker on the junction of Route 22 and Stone Church Lane. The arrow on the signal signifies the path of Dover Stone Church Protect. Stone Church Lane is a right-of-way that traverses personal property. Please keep on the gravel street and respect the privateness of right-of-way property house owners.
On the finish of the gravel right-of-way, there’s a Dover Stone Church signal and a granite stairway.
From the signal, the trail instantly descends on granite steps right into a flat, man-made valley. Younger Maple bushes that give a way of ritual to the beginning of the hike, line the best way right here. On the finish of this flat stroll, one other shorter set of steps takes the trail into woods and close to the brook.
The path emerges briefly into an open space, the place there’s a kiosk with some historical past and details about Dover Stone Church. Flip left and you will notice one other welcome signal for the protect. Observe the trail throughout a picket footbridge and stay on the grime path after crossing Stone Church Brook.
If you attain the path signal, bear proper and observe the trail upstream on the left facet of the brook. The trail, for essentially the most half, traverses rocks or flat stones. It rises gently by way of the deep gorge, and after a very good rain, Stone Church Brook is crammed with the sound of working water from a number of pretty cascades.
A brief distance later, the gothic-like entrance to the Stone Church cavern comes into view.
For my part, this footbridge, which have to be a current addition, is an eyesore. They need to have left this space in its pure state.
Giant metamorphic rocks converge to kind the doorway within the form of a church’s cathedral window. The gothic look of the cave entrance gave rise to the title “Stone Church.”
Contained in the cavern, there’s a 30-foot waterfall cascading right into a pool of water that flows by way of and out the cavern entrance and continues because the Stone Church Guide.
Contained in the cavern is a rock ledge, affectionately given the title “The Pulpit” by Richard Maher, a Dover Plains resident and former city clerk who wrote the e-book, Historic Dover in 1908.
Stone Church Brook, which flows by way of the Stone Church cavern, is a tributary of the Ten Mile River. The Ten Mile River flows southeast and is a department of the Housatonic River in Connecticut.
When you’re finished having fun with this marvelous slice of nature, retrace your steps on the Stone Church Cave Path, cross the stone footbridge, previous the Maple bushes, climbing the granite steps and again to the parking space, the place this hike started.
An distinctive out of doors expertise that’s price visiting in each season. In case you so want, you may try the opposite trails within the protect, however the spotlight is clearly the “Stone Church.”
Stone Church, Stone Church Brook, scenic panorama, historic characteristic, shaded trails.
That unpleasant picket footbridge close to the cave entrance is an eyesore, place does entice crowds throughout heat climate.
Take a hike!