|Up the Creek with a Paddle.
Take a scenic Hudson Cruise on an old-fashioned paddle wheel steamer. Many lakes in the county have launch access points for private motorized and non-motorized boats: Copake Lake, Kinderhook Lake, Lake Taghkanic State Park, and Queechy Lake in Canaan to name a few. If paddling is your preferred speed, try your hand at kayaking on the Hudson River or just plunk down a canoe at any one of dozens of lakes and ponds with access points.
|Over Hill, Over Dale.
If it is wide open trails you desire, pack your cross country skis and snowshoes and make a vacation out of it. You’ll never run out of places to ski: Beebe Hill State Forest, Austerlitz; Borden's Pond Preserve, outside Chatham Village; Clermont State Historic Site, The Fields Sculpture Park at ART/OMI; and the Harlem Valley Rail Trail with several different access points in the county, are but a few.
|Hiking, Biking & Camping -- Oh My!
Bicycle the Harlem Valley Rail Trail, a paved bicycle/pedestrian path built on the old railroad bed that connected New York City, the Harlem Valley, and Chatham. Or just do what many biking enthusiasts do: take to our country roads for a country pedal like no other. Looking for a guide - try Ed Fertik @ Cyclogical Tour. Lake Taghkanic State Park offers camping May-October with tent, trailer, cottages, and cabins; swimming, boat rentals, trails, ice fishing, skating, cross country skiing and snowmobile trail. Taconic State Park offers camping: tent, trailer, cabins & cottages; swimming; fishing; extensive trail system offering biking and nature trails, nature center, cross country skiing and snowmobile trails; mid-May to November.
|No Fish Story.
With deep lakes, cold clear streams, and stocked ponds and creeks, it’s no wonder fishermen and women of every stripe are hooked on Columbia County. Check out our list of access points and bait your hooks
|It's All Down-Hill From Here.
Columbia County offers one of the premier skiing and snowboarding slopes in the region: Catamount offers 32 Trails, 3 terrain parks, and 6 lifts, lessons, rentals, night skiing, children’s lessons and child care. Or, if you’re headed for slopes farther north, why not make your base camp here in Columbia County and enjoy our low-key, affordable alternative to the over-crowded slopes in Massachussetts or Vermont? During the warmer months try the aerial forest adventure park Catamount Adventure Park or mountain biking at Catamount’s Free Ride skills park every Saturday from late June through Labor Day.
|Friends of a Feather.
Birding is big in Columbia County. With endless open spaces and terrains of all types, it’s a birder’s paradise. Organized outings are open to enthusiasts at the Alan Devoe Bird Club. Or to plot your own adventure, get a copy of the Columbia County Bird Guide, our 16-page, full-color guide offers information for birding enthusiasts at all levels of experience. Call 800-724-1846 or e-mail us for a copy of the Bird Guide. There are also plenty of sanctuaries where you can walk and watch for wildlife of all varieties. Photo credit: Fred Engel
|Take to the Air!
Experience the magic of a hot air balloon ride over the Northern Hudson Valley, at sunrise or late afternoon. Or if a propeller is more your speed, take a scenic airplane flight to see it all from above. And learn about all things that go up: the Parker O'Malley Air Museum, Ghent, displays 1920s to 1940s artifacts, including exhibits on local aviators, flying vintage aircraft, war memorabilia, wind tunnel, flight simulator, and models.
| Start Your Engines!
Lebanon Valley Speedway is the home of DIRT sanctioned stock car racing, every Saturday mid-April to September, while the Lebanon Valley Dragway offers NHRA sanctioned drag racing, April to October.