Whether You’re Looking for a Leisurely Walking Trail Near Sand Dunes or the Ocean, Here Are Some of the Best Hamptons Walking Trails for You to Try Out This Winter
During the spring and summer months, hikers come out of the woodwork to embark on adrenaline-packed hikes in the Hamptons. But during the winter months, they’re often looking for something a bit more relaxing—and that’s where the following walking trails come into play.
Located at the eastern end of Long Island, Shelter Island is a picturesque islet located just 90 miles from New York City. Accessible only by ferry, the island is home to Mashomack Preserve, which has five sprawling trails that weave around creeks, woodlands, fields, and the coastline. With trails that range from one mile to 10 miles, there’s something for both experienced hikers and families with young children. You might even see an endangered piping plover bird on the way. Because the trails are easily accessible and easy to navigate, they’re the perfect place to go to when you want to go for a winter walk.
Hither Hills State Park
Nestled into the eastern end of the South Fork of Long Island near Montauk, Hither Hills State Park is a 1,755-acre oasis complete with picnic areas, fireplaces, a sandy white beach, a campground, and a playground. Located on the eastern boundary of the park at Napeague Harbor, the Walking Dunes Trail is the perfect choice for anyone who wants a laid-back winter walk. Shadowed by a canopy of oaks, pines, and beach plums, the trail passes by sand dunes and offers panoramic vistas of Napeague Harbor and Napeague Bay. At the end of the trail, walkers will get a glimpse of a cranberry bog.
Sears Bellows Suffolk County Park
This nearly 1,000-acre park has something for everyone, from a freshwater pond for fishing (you might catch bluegill, bass, and perch) to designated areas for camping and hunting. Sears Bellows also features plenty of marked trails for both beginners and expert hikers as well as horseback riders (you’ll need to pick up a horseback riding permit before embarking on one of the trails). The easiest trail loops around Bellows Pond, offering peaceful views of the water. Afterward, you can rent a rowboat to experience the pond from the water.
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