With the current events of 2020 – we are all chomping at the bit for not only normality, but some adventure as well. There are only so many ways you can let your imagination try to make a trip to the fridge exciting. While we can’t say when exactly it will make sense to start traveling again – we can say that we can’t wait to do these things when summer hits.
1. Soar Next to the Mountains in a Glider Plane
In this day and age, most of us have experienced the moderate thrill of commercial flight, and maybe even the excitement of flying in a private plane. I personally giggled like a maniac my first time in a single engine prop plane. BUT – gliding is an entirely different experience.
A small plane is involved – but only to tow the glider, like a skier, up to 3,500 before cutting the line, letting the glider, well, glide back to earth. Since there are no engines – its a silent experience (aside from your own oohs and aahs of course). Nutmeg Soaring, a flying club in Freehold, New York, offers scenic flights from Mid May through Fall – and we can’t wait to get up there this summer.
Location: Nutmeg Soaring, 3981 Co Rd 67, Freehold, NY 12431
Cost: Approximately $140 per person
2. Take a Leap from a 25 Foot Tall Waterfall in the Catskills
While some people will do all in their power to avoid falling into water – others work to seek out any opportunity to do so. For those ready to take the plunge – Fawns Leap in the Catskills has been attracting adrenaline seekers for generations. For most, the 25 foot jump from the main level is enough to get the adrenaline flowing – but for the skilled cliffjumpers out there, there are areas to climb even higher. Occasionally, you may run into an older gentlemen – who is now in his late 70’s, who climbs a skinny pine tree to a perch 60 feet above the water – and then jumps. Its a spectacle to see even if you aren’t jumping from anywhere yourself.
If you do decide to pursue this adventure, please keep in mind that you are doing so at your own risk, as there is no safety system or ranger on duty for the jump. If you are not confident in your ability, consider hiring a guide or searching Youtube to see more about what you are getting into.
Location: Palenville, NY
Cost: $150 as a guided trip
Reservations: required for guided trips, but location open to public from dawn to dusk.
3. Squeeze through Caves and Crevasses at Howe Caverns
Howe Caverns is a cave system located in Howes Cave, NY that features a few different tour options. For those who are claustrophobic or looking for an easier day, the standard cavern tour is a great way to get underground and see the stalactites and stalagmites of the underworld.
But, for those looking to squeeze out more adrenaline – they offer an Adventure Tour, where you will have to crawl, squeeze, slither and climb your way through the labyrinth of the cave. You’ll work your way all the way to the Great Rotunda, a 107-foot tall dome-shaped room in the caverns. Be ready to get dirty – even with the caving suits that are provided.
Location: 255 Discovery Drive, Howes Cave, NY 12092
Cost: $125 per person for Adventure Tour
4. Summit a Mountain in the Catskills – and see it from above with a Drone
Few feelings can rival standing at the top of a mountain and gazing out at the terrain that you just conquered. The Catskills Park in New York features 35 mountains that soar over 3,500 feet above sea level – and they’re just waiting to be conquered. While they might seem to pale in comparison to the 14ers out west – don’t be fooled, as many of the hikes can be quite challenging. Some even cross through sections of the Devil’s Path – a trail known as one of the most dangerous in the world.
You can join on one of our guided adventure to a mountain summit, or tackle the challenge on your own. Be sure to know the basics of hiking, be prepared with at least the 10 essentials, and let a few people know of your plans and expected return time.
Some of our favorite summits include Indian Head, Kaaterskill High Peak, Twin Mountain, Slide Mountain, Hunter Mountain, and many more. During the experience, we’ll help you get a ton of candid photos from both the ground as well as the drone up above. We’ll take care of all the details, so you can focus on getting immersed in an outdoor adventure.
Location: Catskills State Park, NY
Cost: $80 per person
5. Repel down a 180-foot Waterfall
Its a little tough to see in the picture above – but there’s a person in the middle of the frame, repelling down from the ledge above. Its a 180 foot drop, and unlike a lot of repelling where your feet are against the wall, once you kick off here – its nothing but air until you hit the bottom. We talked to some of the repellers after their drop – and you could tell that the adrenaline was still pumping through their veins. Alpine Endeavors offers this trip a few times a year, as well as other climbing adventures in New York. If you want to get up close and personal with some waterfalls without jumping off the edge, check out one of our guided waterfall adventures instead!
Location: Various locations in Upstate New York
Cost: $200+ per person
6. Zip Across the Valley with Highest and Fastest Zip Lining Tour in North America
You read that right – the highest, fastest, and longest zipline canopy tour in all of North America is right here in Upstate New York. You’ll hit up to 50mph as you zip 600 feet over the valley below – taking in the views of Hunter Mountain and the surrounding Catskill Mountains. You’ll start with a ride on the Hunter Mountain chairlift up to the top of the mountain where your adventure begins – in any season. Thats right – you can even do this in the winter – but we’d recommend in the summer or fall.
Location: Hunter Mountain, Hunter, NY
Cost: $119 per person
7. Go Whitewater Rafting in Letchworth State Park
Another thing you might not expect to find in Upstate New York is whitewater rafting – but its made the list! If you venture on up to Letchworth State Park in Castile, NY you can tackle class II and III rapids with Adventure Calls Outfitters. The smaller rafts they use let you really feel the power of the water beneath you, as you make your way through the gorges of one of New York’s natural wonders. When conditions are right, you can also tie off along the rivers edge to go underneath a waterfall – its well worth the affordable cost of entry.
Cost: $45 per person