Get Outta Town! Bear Mountain

On Sunday morning, my husband turned to me and said, “Let’s go for a drive.” Music to my ears! I packed some snacks, jumped in our ’69 Volkswagen Beetle, and roared onto the FDR.

Soon we were heading north up the Palisades, en route to Bear Mountain. Within an hour, we were firmly ensconced in picture-perfect surroundings.

Sitting on a park bench overlooking the lake, families barbecuing around us and little boats bobbing past, we couldn’t have been further away from the East Village.

Bear Mountain… You know.

Of course, the first order of business was a spin on the carousel… Because how can you not?! I’d never seen a carousel with such strange creatures: there were house cats, otters, frogs, bears (of course) and swans. I picked a rabbit, and hopped on…

(Click to play!) It was pretty fantastic. I was totally in my element, as you can see, below.

After a thrilling ride, we headed in the direction of the lake to see what else was on the menu. (I wasn’t worried. If all else failed, I would have been happy to spin around on that carousel all day long!)

This is Bear Mountain Inn. The first thing I thought when I saw it was, ‘Shauna would love this!’

The hotel dates back to 1915 and was recently restored. It has a pretty cool history, and is “among the earliest examples of a monumental rustic park lodge of a type that became common in state and national parks”.

It’s just SO American, isn’t it?! It makes me think of boy scouts, s’mores, roaring fires and telling ghost stories.

I like to call this one “Goth On The Lake”. Who goes to a mountain wearing high-heeled Doc Martens? This girl!

Seriously though, what a beautiful backdrop! When I think of deep blue water and green mountains, I think of New Zealand, Switzerland, Capri… Definitely not upstate New York!

I’m so in love with Bear Mountain: it’s my new favourite day-trip!

It only takes an hour to get there, and the Palisades are lush and green the whole way. Pack a great picnic, rent a boat, check out the zoo and enjoy feeling the grass between your toes!

My husband always says that going upstate feels like “hitting the reset button”, and now that I’ve experienced it, I agree. I recommend it to any and all New Yorkers feeling stifled in the heat and overwhelmed by the city. Just a few hours beside the lake, inhaling some fresh air and enjoying the sights and sounds, should be essential for the soul.

Refreshed and revived,