"The Ice Caves" Ellenville Things to Do Tip by krzykrl
Ellenville Things to Do: 2 reviews and 6 photos
The Ices Caves are a geological phenomenon created under the unique circumstances of the Shawanagunk Ridge. They aren't caves in the truest sense of the word but are actually cracks and fishers in the talus fields created by the weathering and erosion of the ridge. In the winter, the caves drop to freezing temperatures, ice forms and snow collects in the crevasses. As spring starts to warm the surrounding area, the rocks retain the freezing temperature. Because cold air sinks and no direct sunlight enters the cracks and caves, snow and ice remains well into April and May.
At one time the caves were a tourist attraction with parking at the top of the cliffs where the Ice Cave Trail begins. Today, you must park in the preserve's parking lot at the base of the ridge. Don't forget to pay the $7 for the parking (although it is not clearly marked that you must do so). The preserve is run by the Open Space Institute who purchase land to preserve it in it's natural or historic state.
The trail to the caves and back is approximately a two mile round trip. Make sure to wear shoes with good traction. Wear rain gear or clothes you can get wet and dirty. Bring something warm to wear; it may be 65 degrees outside, but in the caves it can be 20 degrees colder. Gloves are also a good idea as you will be supporting yourself on the cold rocks. The exit to the caves is a tight fit and you will get wet and dirty there.
Address: Sam's Point Dwarf Pine Preserve
Directions: In Ellenville, turn east on Route 52, and follow it to the top of the ridge. At the summit, turn left and follow signs to Cragsmoor. Approximately 0.1 miles past the Post Office, turn right on to Sam’s Point Road. Follow the road to the parking lot.
Phone: (212) 290-8200
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