Trip Reports on 
Ashokan Reservoir Dam

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KenR, November 2007:

Sharon and I rollerskied on both off-road sections, pretty and pleasant. The half toward the west and south end has been re-surfaced. The half toward the east has some humps in the surface, but otherwise it was in good condition.

May 2004, KenR:

Sharon and I went rollerskiing by the Ashokan Reservoir on Saturday.  Pretty as ever, but now twice as much distance available.  Beautiful day, very little goose-shit on the pavement. Surprisingly few people out there walking+bicycling+skating.

The big change is that they've closed the section of Monument Rd which runs west (and south) from the bridge across the middle of the Reservoir to Rt 28A -- the road across the top of the main dam. This adds about another mile of off-road pavement, for a total of two miles.

The pavement on this new section was in good condition -- though it has coarser stone than on the older eastern part, so the rollerskiing is slower. With no cars on it any more, I was able to stop in the middle of the top of the main dam and enjoy the views, and take my time to see what's below the dam.

When we got to near the bridge across the lake, and there we found that in order to reach the other half, we had to go on a section of public road still open to motor vehicle traffic. It seemed like less than a hundred yards, and though we could easily have taken off our rollerskis and walked it, but instead we roller-skied on the public road with no problem.

The side-road to the actual monument on the south side was marked as closed.

September 2003, Ken Roberts

Sharon and I rode the whole route except for the sections that on Reservoir Rd and the visit to the monument.

The section of Monument Rd that crosses the main dam was blocked by concrete barriers from mile 1.3 to mile 2.7 -- just west from its junction with Reservoir Rd (also blocked at its southwest end at its junction with Rt 28A).  So that section is closed to motor vehicles. 

But not closed to bicycles.  There was an opening in each barrier wide enough to a allow a person to go through, so we rode this whole section, and the pavement was in good condition.

As long as this status continues, there is an additional 0.7 miles of paved road available starting at mile 1.9 on the cue sheet -- with great views to the high Catskill mountains across the lake.  Riding these extra miles both ways would add about 1.4 miles to the route.

But the side turnoff at mile 2.1 to visit the monument itself had signs forbidding entry.

Reservoir Rd to the bridge across the middle of the reservoir was open to motor vehicles (and bicycles too, I assume).

July 2002, Ken Roberts

I rode the whole route with Samir and Rhonda, as part of a longer tour.  The pavement on both the path and the roads was in mostly good condition. 

August 2001, Ken Roberts:  

On a humid summer afternoon, I joined quite a number of members of my family at the "Frying Pan" parking lot -- Margaret, Erin, and Kerry from nearby, Rick from out of town, and Lisa, Mae, and Anina from overseas.  Anina (4 years old) was on her new bicycle with training wheels, and Mae at 8 years was now riding without training wheels.  Rick, Erin, and Margaret were trading off among pairs of inline skates, and Kerry had her own pair.  Lisa mostly walked to stay with Anina.  And I was on rollerskis, first poling, then skating.  

Actually we all just stayed on the off-road path, so nobody got beyond the first mile and back.  (I have a feeling that's what most folks who come here do.)  And I didn't see anyone do that a second full time. 

It was beautiful to move along there right beside the big lake, with mountains around us, and some dark clouds overhead.  The path was rather wide -- wider than any rail trail I've seen.  Margaret said they come there often, and I can see why.

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