Want Breakneck Ridge views without the infamous rock scramble and crowded trails? Bull Hill (also known as Mt. Taurus) is the hike for you.
According to a book by Joel Cook published in 1882, legend has it that Bull Hill got its name because “a wild bull was once chased by the indignant inhabitants across to the other mountain, where he fell and broke his neck.” So, at least according to this mythology, one bull named both of the mountains.
Today the area offers a lush landscape for a four-hour moderately strenuous hike, delivering beautiful views of the Hudson, meandering brooks, plenty of trees, and abandoned carriage roads. The trailhead's convenient location less than a mile from the train depot in Cold Spring is an added plus.
Here's the breakdown of your full journey, from the station to the trailhead and around the trail loop:
Take Metro-North from Grand Central to Cold Spring (expect a scenic hour and 20-minute ride). From the train platform head north along the trackside walkway to Main Street.
Under 90 minutes to Cold Spring from GCT
Then turn right, follow Main street up four blocks through the center of town and turn left onto Fair Street. Stroll north on Fair for about half a mile past the small town’s playfield and pond until you reach Route 9D.
Follow Route 9D for .1 miles to the well-marked trailhead. Start on the Washburn Trail (look for the white circles). The trail carries you up, past an abandoned stone quarry and river vistas to the 1,420-foot summit. After taking a well-earned rest stick to the Washburn Trail, which slowly descends down the rolling backside of Bull Hill to the Notch Trail.
Continue left on the Notch Trail, and take another left onto Brook Trail past an old crumbling stone wall. Notch trail finally meets up with Undercliff Trail, which skirts an old wooden footbridge and swings back to the now-familiar Washburn Trail to complete the loop.
When you’re finished with your loop head into Cold Spring to enjoy a drink at the Cold Spring Depot or an ice cream at the famed Moo Moos Creamery! For more inspiration, visit our Cold Spring guide.
Looking to meet other outdoor enthusiasts? Join the Mappy Hour NYC Chapter for free!