Part of Largest Fresh Water Barrier Beach System in NY
Info: Part of the largest freshwater barrier beach system in New York State. Two viewing towers, two dune walk-over areas, white sands, Lots of diversity, not far from the Black Pond Trail. Once you come out onto the beach, if you go left and walk a distance you will find another elevated trail over the dunes leading to the inland lake (see pic below).
2021 update – For those who enjoy the Lakeview Wildlife Management Area Trails and perhaps walking to Lakeview beach – they have replaced the old bridge over the stream near the end where the boardwalk is, including the section on the other side of the bridge that you had to make your way over on temporary planks during high water. That whole mess has been fixed.
The bridge has been relocated about ten feet and the side that was washed out has been replaced with a new elevated gravel section, making it much easier to traverse.
Also, the vertical wood sections that were at each end of the bridge are not on the new bridge so biking across it is much easier.
The DEC did a beautiful and thorough job of it.
Directions/Location: Take Route 3 South from Watertown about 20 miles until you get to the entrance to Southwick Beach State Park, you can turn down this road and right before getting to the Southwick Beach building look for the (free) parking on the left, this is the trailhead from this direction.
You can also go past the Southwick entrance and turn right at Pierrepont Place and enter the trails at Lakeview Pond. Once on the trail to get to the beach go about 1.44 miles, to get to Southwick Beach trail take a right near the end of the trail (a short distance before the beach).
There is also another trail approximately 3.5 miles south on Route 3 from the corner of Pierrepont Place Road and Route 3, this has some historic markers, a porta-potty, an accessible observation area at the end, multiple benches along the trail, fishing, canoe access, and follows mostly along the South Sandy Creek.
Geocache(s) from Geocaching.com: None on the trail or very close.
Trail Distance: 3 to 4 miles overall. Also, there is another trail down the beach (to the left), this is very short).
The other trail is approximately 3.5 miles south on Route 3, it is around 1.3 miles to the observation deck.
Date/Time Open: Daylight hours.
Mountain Biking Allowed: Yes
Hiking/Walking Allowed: Yes
Cross-Country Skiing: ?
Fishing: Yes, and fishing and boat/canoe access.
Pets Allowed: Yes.
Built on Former Railroad Bed: No.
Special Instructions: Stay off the dunes, stay on the trail, no swimming at the beach. If you come from the Southwick side you can park before the park office at the trail entrance.
For More Information: Contact DEC.