Hawk’s Nest, Upper Delaware River, NY. Photo credit: Krysti Sabins
Fall Photographs by my studio manager, Krysti Sabins
I love the outdoors, and the fall is my favorite time of year to get out and photograph the luminescent fall foliage before it disappears. The real question is, where to go?
The hot, dry summer will probably dampen the brilliance of our foliage this year, but you know there are going to be those brilliant days with cool, crisp bright blue skies, surrounding the yellows, reds and golds of the leaves. Keep track of the foliage as it changes with this guide and start planning your fall foliage photography visits before the season ends!
Here are my Top 5 Spots to photograph fall foliage in the New York, New Jersey metropolitan area:
1. Harriman State Park, NY
If you are looking for a place within our area to escape the everyday hustle and bustle, Harriman State Park is the spot for you. This park boasts 31 lakes and reservoirs and 200 miles of hiking trails. The very first section of the Appalachian Trail was laid out here in Harriman. There are streams and boulders and vistas.
2. The Delaware Water Gap, NJ
The Delaware Water Gap is a dramatic place to observe the leaves turning as you walk along its pristine paths and a multitude of water features. With the Appalachian Trail running right through it, the Gap has plenty of hiking opportunities and expansive views of the Delaware River Valley.
3. The Catskills, NY
View from Slide Mountain, Catskills, NY. Photo credit: Krysti Sabins
The Catskills cover a wide area in mid-upstate New York. This region has a ton of activities for outdoor enthusiasts and cultural aficionados alike. I love the far southeastern edge, which is not very far from New Jersey. A great place to start is the Escarpment Trail at North South Lake, near the town of Haines Falls.
4. Hacklebarney State Park, NJ
Hacklebarney State Park, Long Valley, NJ. Photo credit: Krysti Sabins
Hacklebarney State Park is a “465-acre natural area offer breathtaking views of the Black River, which lies deep within a shaded hemlock ravine.” Riddled with well-maintained hiking trails, picnic spots, and flowing river waters, Hacklebarney is a prime location to soak in the sights and sounds of autumn. Plus, there are great apple cider donuts at the Hacklebarney Farms Cider Mill, just outside the Park entrance.
5. The Shawangunks, NY
The Shawangunks, or Gunks, are an area in New York filled with natural beauty and unparalleled sights. The Gunks’ “dramatic landscape is fashioned of miles of white cliffs and ledges, clear mountaintop lakes, deep oak forests, and sparse ridge top barrens of bonsai-shaped pitch pines.” In other words, this area should absolutely be on your to-visit list this fall. Stop at the Mohonk Preserve visitor center, on Route 44, to get a map, permit and advice on where to hike.
See more of Krysti’s photographs and hiking videos at Unboring Exploring