I feel this is the closest and best ride for anyone coming out of NYC, especially queens. It is also base for a wide variety of rides in the Hudson Valley. R218 is a must, but it is also worth crossing over Bear Mountain Bridge to take 9D towards Cold Springs for a great little town filled with motorcycle enthusiasts out for the same great ride. If you are feeling adventurous, go east on 301 to Route 9N and take a trip down East Mountain Road (1.5m on your right after you turn onto 9N). You can then backtrack to the bridge and take the nice little stretch of route 6 as you make your way to 9S which will take you back to I87 and NYC.
Before moving to the UK, this was our regular route. My wife and I would leave NYC ..
- Head up the west side highway (north)
- Cross over the GW bridge (west)
- Head north on the Pallisades Parkway.
All highway until you get to Bear Mountain. Then the fun starts. Lots of riders on early weekend mornings who ride to the top of the mountain to check out the view.
From Bear Mountain you have choices ... cross over the Hudson and go North or South on the east side of the river or stay on the west side of the Hudson and head north up to West Point. Either way great riding. And, as an added bonus, if you stay on the west side of the Hudson youll hit Orange County - home of Orange County Choppers. (weve never been but we used to watch the show).
Route time from NYC to Bear Mountain 1 hr each way. The trip gets longer if you add in the West Point section or if you cross the Hudson to explore the East Side.
One doesn't need to ride the whole thing. Too many towns. However, the Bear Mountain area is Jolly Good. Not too shabby from Bear Mountain to West Point, NY. Quik trip: Take the Palisades Parkway to Bear Mountain, then 9W to WestPoint. No matter what, go into the park and ride to the top. You can see new York City on a clear day.