#MountainLife is back for its second summer release! This collaboration brew with West Kill Brewing is in celebration of New York’s Catskill region, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Catskill Center. The project’s first launch was in January 2022, followed by a summer release in July to celebrate Hike for the Catskills, a month-long fundraiser aimed at protecting critical Catskills habitats, keeping land and waters wild, and advocating for the community and Catskill Park. This weekend’s release will again mark the kickoff of Hike for the Catskills and support its cause—for the month of August, hikers of all levels are invited to set their own goals and participate in hiking events as an opportunity to raise funds and awareness for the Catskill Center’s programs. The celebration starts at 2 pm this Saturday, August 5th, and will feature live music and an EMS gear raffle, as well as two guided hikes in the region in the first half of the day, outlined below via the Catskill Center. Check here for more guided hikes throughout the month.

Art by Kelley Wills.

Hunter Fire Tower Hike

Join one of Catskill Center’s Fire Tower stewards for this 7-mile out-and-back fun and moderately challenging hike to the Hunter Mountain Fire Tower. This tower has the distinction of being located at the highest elevation of any fire tower in New York state. Enjoy some great views while completing your hike to one of the six fire towers in the 2023 Catskill Fire Tower Challenge! The moderately difficult hike has a 1,768 elevation gain from the trailhead. Beautiful, 360 views of the Catskills will greet us from the top cab of the fire tower. Meet at the Spruceton Trail Parking Lot off of Spruceton Road at 9 am. Registration is required and spots are limited for this 9 am-3:30 pm hike.

Diamond Notch Falls Hike

Join the Catskills Visitor Center’s David Hans for a short hike to Diamond Notch Falls from Spruceton Rd. The trail follows the creek along an old service road and the hike will reach its turning point at the trail junction by Diamond Notch Falls. The hike will begin from the Spruceton Rd Trailhead. If the lot is full, the group will meet at the Forest Preserve lot just a bit down from the trailhead, on the right.

To register for a hike, please call the Catskills Visitor Center at (845) 688-3369 or email [email protected]. Provide your name, phone number, and email so you can be reached regarding any changes or cancellations. Advance registration is required and the hike is limited to 12 people. After the guided hikes, anyone who registers for Hike For The Catskills will be invited to meet at the brewery at 2 pm, where each person will get a drink ticket.

More #goEast Approved Adventures

Looking for more adventure inspiration in the area? There is plenty of it in and around the 700,000 acres of the park—we dug through the archives to compile options, like these 5 Hikes That Will (Almost) Make You Forget You Started The Day in New York City (as well as some Fall recommendations). Don’t forget these two Catskill 4,000-footers, and if you’re looking to test your mettle, check out the Catskills’ most notorious trail. Gaining over 8,500 feet over 25 miles of some of the Northeast’s most rugged terrain, it traverses five Catskill high peaks separated by steep descents, low notches, and lots of scrambles. This hike is not for the faint of heart, and #goEast has an Alpha Guide to prove it. An hour south of West Kill are the Shawangunk Mountains, a fantastic place to hike, bike, and especially climb. Some popular trails include the Mohonk Preserve’s Undercliff/Overcliff Trail, the Awosting Falls Trail in Minnewaska State Park, and the Sam’s Point Preserve Loop Trail. For bikers, there are many miles of scenic roads and trails that are perfect for cycling, and mountain biking trails are available in some of the parks and preserves, including the Mohonk Preserve’s Spring Farm Trailhead and the Minnewaska State Park’s Awosting Reserve. Popular climbing spots include the Trapps, Near Trapps, and Peterskill—get out in the Gunks with EMS guides!

<p> <img src="hiking.jpg" alt="hiking with guides in the Shawangunk Mountains."> </p>

If you want to learn more about the Catskill Center, check out last year’s interview with the organization’s Executive Director, Jeff Senterman. “The Catskill Center for Conservation and Development is the oldest environmental organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of the Catskills,” he explains. “Our mission is to protect and preserve the environmental, cultural, and economic resources of the Catskills and we focus our work on three major areas: the stewardship of the region’s natural resources; educating and inspiring the public to care for and appreciate the Catskills; and advocating for the Catskills in Albany to ensure that the Catskill Park and our communities receive the appropriate resources.” Let’s help the Catskill Center reach their fundraising goal of $15,000! Click here to register and/or donate. See you out there!

Tag your #MountainLife adventures on social! A portion of proceeds from this pale ale will benefit the Catskill Center.