Where in LaGrange can you see wildflowers, a great blue heron, a pair of mute swans, dozens of mallard ducks, migrating Canada geese, turtles, a great egret, deer and tree trunks gnawed by beavers? These can all be found at one of LaGrange’s hidden gems – the “Wappinger Creek Greenway Trail”.
Along the Wappinger Creek, in a wooded section of northwest LaGrange, is a 1.25 mile trail created by the Town of LaGrange. The trail, hugging the bank of the Wappinger Creek, passes through woods and fields. It is a place to stop and look and enjoy nature.
The trail was conceived in the early 1990’s by Jack Rosenmeier, then chairman of the LaGrange Conservation Advisory Council and avid fisherman. He wanted the public as well as fishermen to be able to enjoy the Wappinger Creek. The trail started with Town land. Then several easements over private lands were added making possible this 1.25 mile trail. Three Eagle Scout projects resulted in cutting the complete trail and adding a “telephone pole” bridge. Due to severe erosion of the Creek bank, two major bank stabilization projects were undertaken with Town help. The Conservation Advisory Council continues the management of the trail, led by Rolf Nijhuis.
Yellow, diamond-shaped markers lead the way along the four-season trail: wild flowers in the spring, cool shade of the woods by the water in the summer, views opening up in the fall as the colorful leaves come down, and in winter the quiet serenity of the fallen snow yet with a “crunching” sound underfoot.
The trail is open to the public from dawn to dusk at no charge. The only time the trail is closed is when the Creek is in full flood. This typically occurs for a week in the early spring. Fishing is permitted. Trout Unlimited stocks the Creek with trout fingerlings in March.
- Directly across from the main H. G. Page store on route 55, travel north on Overlook Road for 0.7 mile.
- Turn right at the traffic light (still Overlook Rd) for 0.5 miles.
- Turn left at Sleight-Plass Road for 0.7 mile. On the left is the trail entrance marked by a split-rail fence and a sign announcing “Wappinger Creek Greenway Trail.”
- There is space for 4 vehicles to park “nose-in.”