Where to camping/cabin-ing near NYC with no car?
August 23, 2012 8:45 AM   Subscribe

What are the best spots for camping/cabin-ing near NYC if you don't have a car?

I live in Brooklyn, and I'm taking the last week of August off. I'd like to go on a trip to the wilderness, but unfortunately, I don't have a car. Where are the best spots for a woodsy, peaceful experience away from the city for a few nights? It'd be great to go someplace with a few things to do — hiking, swimming, etc. Name your favorite spots!
posted by brother to Travel & Transportation around New York, NY (7 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
Not woodsy but a great place to camp. Watch Hill, Fire Island.
posted by tman99 at 9:06 AM on August 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Harriman State Park might be good.
posted by treblemaker at 9:37 AM on August 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

You could take the Amtrak to Hudson and a cab (bike?) to lake tagkanic state park where they have cabins and a lovely lake.
posted by shothotbot at 9:47 AM on August 23, 2012

Watch Hill campground, mentioned above, will almost certainly be filled during Labor Day weekend; call to check availability if you're planning to visit then. Also the mosquitoes there are the size of cocker spaniels and there's no woods or hiking trails (or much else in the way of activities).
The Wildwood State Park has more woods, hiking, swimming, etc, and is only ten minutes by taxi from the Riverhead LIRR Station. Harriman State Park and Clarence Fahnestock State Park both offer woods, hiking, swimming, as well, and can be reached by Metro North + taxi.
Farther afield, Half Moon Pond State Park is convenient by taxi or "The Bus" to the Rutland, VT Amtrak station - it has lots of swimming, hiking trails, cabins, campsites, and so on.
If you go to the Reserve America site and enter for your dates it will show you places that have availability; it takes a little searching to find the closest public transit, but it is doable.
posted by jcrcarter at 10:06 AM on August 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

PATH train to Hoboken and a NJ Transit train could take you out to Port Jervis for canoeing/kayaking on the delaware. kittatiny canoes has a few camp grounds along the river as well as rents boats and I'd imagine you could work something out with them to get up there. There use to be a few spots on islands on the river where you could camp out away from everyone for free, buts a been a while and I'm not sure if that's still possible. Can be a bit of a zoo on the weekends.

If your not looking for the camp ground thing I would do a search on alltrails.com for some places that looked good locally and cross reference with nearest stops on NJ Transit, Amtrak or one of the NY lines and then see if I could find a bus or cab company that would get me closer.

nyparks.com and njcampmgrounds.com might give you some options with same strategy....
posted by jeffe at 10:08 AM on August 23, 2012

also look up the Appalachian trail map and compare to transit maps
posted by jeffe at 10:11 AM on August 23, 2012

and because you got me curious - public transport to the AT
posted by jeffe at 10:13 AM on August 23, 2012

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