Photo Taken by Steve Aaron
"The Witch's Hole is the large ravine slicing perpendicular into the Shawangunk Ridge above Napanoch. About halfway up the ridge, a tributary of the ravine turns 90 degrees to the north, running parallel to the ridgeline. This shot was taken on the west cliff wall of the ravine, overlooking the northern tributary. The late afternoon sun was shining directly into the ravine and the fall colors were at peak. This was shot on October 25, 2014.
This land was formerly privately owned, and purchased by the Open Space Institute in late 2013. I've been viewing the ravine from the Rondout Valley for years, wondering what was up there. The purchase of the land by OSI opened up this part of the Shawangunks to the public. The first part of the hike was fairly typical of the west face of the Shawangunks in this area - A steep, steady uphill through relatively a thick deciduous forest. After about 1,000 feet of climbing I reached a summit, and walked across the top of the hill. The view on the other side of this hill was amazing. One could look 100+ feet down into the ravine or across the ravine to Napanoch Point, almost 1,000 feet higher. There were typical Shawangunk cliff lines in view, as well as the narrow gorge at the head of the Witches Hole ravine, pointing to the elusive Witches Hole waterfall. The sunny cliffs here are home to many rattlesnakes, and an angry rattler was encountered during this exploration.
This area is one of the most wild and remote sections of the Shawangunks, offering incredible scenic rewards to the intrepid explorer."
Hudson Valley Photos
Featuring the best photos from the Hudson Valley region of New York State.