Not sure where to start exploring the Preserve's trails and carriage roads? Come to the Visitor Center for recreation suggestions, directions, and information on local wildlife and geology.
The Visitor Center is open year-round, free-of-charge, 9am-5pm daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve after 12 noon, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day.
Especially for Kids ...
Unearth bones and feathers, play puzzles and games, and read nature stories in the Kids Corner. See live animals and models of wildlife. Borrow a nature exploration kit and wander through the Children's Forest.
Take a Stroll
The short, self-guided trails around the Visitor Center are designed to give you a quick and easy introduction to the ridge.
- The J & S Grafton Sensory Trail is a 1/4-mile, easy, level loop. Interpretive stations along the way encourage you to touch, look, and listen to nature.
- The Weinstein Butterfly Garden along the Sensory Trail attracts a colorful display of wild butterflies. Take a rest and see the flowers that butterflies like.
- The LaVerne Thompson Nature Trail is a 1/3rd–mile rolling loop that forks off from the Sensory Trail. A free trail brochure (available at the Visitor Center or start of the trail) leads you along the path’s 16 stops, where you can learn about the plants, animals, and geology of the ridge.
Check Out our Indoor Exhibits
- Get a bird’s eye view of where you are on the Shawangunk Ridge with an interactive, three-dimensional topographical model of the region.
- See frogs, turtles, and other small creatures and visit the Discovery Room to see a mounted fox, rabbit, raccoon, pheasant and more....
- Learn why the Visitor Center won a "green design" award and how a GeoExchange system heats and cools the building while saving energy.
- Share your discoveries on our Interactive Blog - tell us what you saw and did at the Preserve, or ask us a question.