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This past Saturday the weather in New York was gorgeous. My family decided to spend the afternoon outdoors and head to a local nature preserve for a hike.

Thompson Pond Nature Preserve

This wasn’t just a leisurely stroll through the woods however. It was a trek up Stissing Mountain (1400 feet) which included a steep, rocky trail.

The three of us “kids” (as my Mom calls us), forged ahead, bounding up the trail. I immediately regretted my lack of stretching after our run the day before.

It was fun catching up with Kevi, hearing about life in Rochester and comparing wedding planning stories.

Stissing Mountain Hike

We came to a fork in the trail and in order to let Mom and Dad know which way we had gone (we tried calling but our phones were non-functional), we channeled our inner wilderness explorers and left a sign.

Stissing Mountain Hike

Shortly thereafter we reached the top. The JogTracker app on my phone said it took us 49 minutes. The distance? Only one mile. It was a climb!

The end goal was this 90ft fire tower. While yes, that meant more climbing, the view from the top was absolutely worth it.

Stissing Mountain fire tower

This ninety foot steel tower was originally constructed as a Civilian Conservation Corps project in 1934 for fire spotting purposes. The Tower provides vistas east to Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Vermont; Southwest to Pennsylvania and New Jersey; and North to the Empire State Plaza in Albany. –StissingFireTower.org

View from Stissing Mountain Fire Tower

Z K and Kevin

After taking in the view we headed back down and waited for Mom and Dad to catch up.  We sat at the base of the tower, rehydrated, and enjoyed the lovely little lunch we had packed.

Stissing Mountain Hike 4

Heading down was a challenge as well. It required concentration and I realized that Z, Kevi and I were totally silent as we focused on foot placement and avoiding loose rocks.

It took just under 30 minutes to get back down and we all agreed that a nice cold margarita at Kevi’s birthday dinner was in order.

Z and I agreed that we need to go hiking more often. There are lots of opportunities in the MD-VA area that we really must check out.

Overall, a fun time with the fam!

I want to know…

Do you consider yourself an “outdoorsy” person?

Hiking—love it or hate it?

Know of any good trails in the MD-DC-VA area?