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  1. #1
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    South County Trail Bronx Help

    Thinking of checking this out this week....will be coming from Queens...Can someone let me know where the best place to park furthest south ?? also are there any detours, anything I should be on the look out for??? Also how long is this trail? is it even worth the drive?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Papa Tom's Avatar
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    Start here Home Page 2 , then ask for additional info. Go to the Westchester page for info on the North & South County Trails.
    Papa Tom

    "I just need a rest...and by 'rest' I mean a really long bicycle ride."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Billy1111 View Post
    Thinking of checking this out this week....will be coming from Queens...Can someone let me know where the best place to park furthest south ?? also are there any detours, anything I should be on the look out for??? Also how long is this trail? is it even worth the drive?
    Distances are as follows;

    If you should start in Van Cortland and want to ride the dirt path north to the Westchester County/NYC border,

    - Golfcourse clubhouse at south end of Van Cortland Park, to start of paved SCT, 1.6 miles, one way


    At that point:

    - NYC/Westchester border to Touissant Ave., 4.3 miles, one way.

    - Touissant Ave. to Rt 119 in Elmsford – 7.5 miles, one way. That's the official northern terminus of the SCT.

    So 13.4 miles one way, 11.8 of it paved.



    As to parking, obviously the furthest south start point is Van Cortland. I've no idea as to parking there, I'd be looking it up on the NYC Parks Dept. website. Other then that, the path passes thru Tibbets Brook County Park, but you might have to pay there. I tend to park at Touissant Ave., on the north side of Tuckahoe Rd. as it's easy access from either the NYS Thruway or the Sprain Brook Parkway.

    I enjoy this ride, especially the VCP section. It's a bit noisy north of Yonkers as it's right alongside the Saw Mill Parkway. North of Ardsley it passes thru Macy Park, which is pretty, but is noisier still, now wedged between the thruway and parkway. I'm pretty deaf so it doesn't ever bother me.


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    Senior Member Ferdinand NYC's Avatar
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    This is a little off your topic, and entirely none of my business, but I'll take a chance and ask anyway: if you're only coming from Queens, why even bother with driving? Wouldn't it be nicer to simply ride all the way?

    Here's my unsolicited suggestion: you could go over the Triborough Bridge (via Randall's Island) to the Bronx; go north on St. Ann's Ave. either to 138th St. or a little farther to 149th St.; then left to jump over to the Grand Concourse, whose bike lane begins at 161st St. Then take the tamed Concourse north to Kingsbridge Road, and make a left. (Sorry about the hill; you can't entirely escape them in the Bronx.) Take Kingsbridge west to Bailey Ave., then make a right; and stay on Bailey northbound until it ends at the park. The entry to the trail is somewhere near there on Van Courtlandt Park S. (Someone with more experience can tell you exactly where. I've only done it once, so I don't remember the exact location.)

    The one time I did the South County Trail was last summer. I, too, live in Queens (Woodhaven, to be exact); and I just rode all the way. Actually, I did the trail only southbound. I wanted to see the streets going north (I like the streets even more than I like park trails, to be honest); so I took Broadway up to White Plains Rd. (Rt. 119) in Elmsford, and then I took the trail back down.

    As I mentioned, I am aware that this is none of my business; and I hope you won't mind my suggestion. It just struck me that it would be a shame to drive if you're coming from someplace as close as Queens. Also, riding in the Bronx is really pleasant, despite the hills that you'll sometimes encounter. So, I hope that you'll consider making it a pure bike-ride.
    Last edited by Ferdinand NYC; 07-17-14 at 07:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferdinand NYC View Post
    This is a little off your topic, and entirely none of my business, but I'll take a chance and ask anyway: if you're only coming from Queens, why even bother with driving? Wouldn't it be nicer to simply ride all the way?

    Here's my unsolicited suggestion: you could go over the Triborough Bridge (via Randall's Island) to the Bronx; go north on St. Ann's Ave. either to 138th St. or a little farther to 149th St.; then left to jump over to the Grand Concourse, whose bike lane begins at 161st St. Then take the tamed Concourse north to Kingsbridge Road, and make a left. (Sorry about the hill; you can't entirely escape them in the Bronx.) Take Kingsbridge west to Bailey Ave., then make a right; and stay on Bailey northbound until it ends at the park. The entry to the trail is somewhere near there on Van Courtlandt Park S. (Someone with more experience can tell you exactly where. I've only done it once, so I don't remember the exact location.)

    The one time I did the South County Trail was last summer. I, too, live in Queens (Woodhaven, to be exact); and I just rode all the way. Actually, I did the trail only southbound. I wanted to see the streets going north (I like the streets even more than I like park trails, to be honest); so I took Broadway up to White Plains Rd. (Rt. 119) in Elmsford, and then I took the trail back down.

    As I mentioned, I am aware that this is none of my business; and I hope you won't mind my suggestion. It just struck me that it would be a shame to drive if you're coming from someplace as close as Queens. Also, riding in the Bronx is really pleasant, despite the hills that you'll sometimes encounter. So, I hope that you'll consider making it a pure bike-ride.
    hey thanx for the suggestion but only been riding a few months now and i think i'd be biting off more than i can chew with that!!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Ferdinand NYC's Avatar
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    Ah, OK. I understand. The full round-trip from where I am in Queens amounted to about 70 miles. So it makes perfect sense to do things at the pace at which you're comfortable.

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    A comment about parking in the south Yonkers area.

    There are 5 access points to the SCT south of Tuckahoe Rd.

    From the south;

    - Alan Shepard Drive, just north of McLean Ave., park on local streets.

    - Tibbets Brook Park. This is a county park where they charge for parking.

    - HF Redmond - City of Yonkers, free parking lot on the west side of the park, the SCT is accessed at the north end of the parking lot.

    - Mile Sq. Rd., the SCT crosses at grade, you can park on local streets.

    - Palmer Ave, also at grade crossing, a busier road so parking would be problematic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    A comment about parking in the south Yonkers area.

    There are 5 access points to the SCT south of Tuckahoe Rd.

    From the south;

    - Alan Shepard Drive, just north of McLean Ave., park on local streets.

    - Tibbets Brook Park. This is a county park where they charge for parking.

    - HF Redmond - City of Yonkers, free parking lot on the west side of the park, the SCT is accessed at the north end of the parking lot.

    - Mile Sq. Rd., the SCT crosses at grade, you can park on local streets.

    - Palmer Ave, also at grade crossing, a busier road so parking would be problematic.
    thanx stevie b!!! im thinking maybe tomorrow...but the weekend is probably not a good idea

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    A comment about parking in the south Yonkers area.

    There are 5 access points to the SCT south of Tuckahoe Rd.

    From the south;

    - Alan Shepard Drive, just north of McLean Ave., park on local streets.

    - Tibbets Brook Park. This is a county park where they charge for parking.

    - HF Redmond - City of Yonkers, free parking lot on the west side of the park, the SCT is accessed at the north end of the parking lot.

    - Mile Sq. Rd., the SCT crosses at grade, you can park on local streets.

    - Palmer Ave, also at grade crossing, a busier road so parking would be problematic.
    did it today...parked at - Alan Shepard Drive... thanx stevie b!! and went up around 10 miles and turned around and headed back then went into the Van cortland dirt trail for a bit but was a little to empty for me...being alone i went back...it would be a good place to get mugged .....parking by that Alan shepard did have some signs around that u needed a park permit or some ****....i still parked no ticket! thanx again stevie b....next time ill head farther up...

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    I'd like to say that when I did this path years ago it 'stopped' on Main St / Rt 119, while heading north, but I knew it continued.

    I do not know if signage was added since then, but it was tough to find where the trailway continued. Eventually, I learned that it continues off Warehouse Lane, a little more than a mile north.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclerock View Post
    I'd like to say that when I did this path years ago it 'stopped' on Main St / Rt 119, while heading north, but I knew it continued.

    I do not know if signage was added since then, but it was tough to find where the trailway continued. Eventually, I learned that it continues off Warehouse Lane, a little more than a mile north.
    As I stated in my post on 7/23; "Rt 119 in Elmsford That's the official northern terminus of the SCT."

    The trail map as found on the Westchester County website - http://parks.westchestergov.com/imag...fs/SCT2014.PDF

    The South County Trail runs from Van Cortland Park at the NYC/Westchester County border, to Rt 119 in Elmsford. The map shows the detour in Elmsford to link to the North County Trail at Warehouse Lane.

    I believe the county is attempting to add the missing section in Elmsford, but have to either build a new path off the Old Put right-of-way, or get the NYS DOT to move sections of it's repair yard to accommodate. Not sure if or when that'll ever happen.

  12. #12
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    I ride the SCT quite frequently... It's a nice stretch to hit during the week. I come across from the Pelham Bay area via Pelham Parkway, , I skirt the Zoo and Botanical Gardens, cut through Mosholu and then traverse the dirt in Van Cortland Park, which is mostly smoothly packed except in some areas where the mud can get you after rain and watch out for railroad ties...

    It's a bit choppy in the Northern half of the trailway up to Elmsford. A lot of roots growing under the pavement, dips and such that amount to quite a bit of not the most comfortable road chatter... but it's easy to live with once you get North of Elmsford...Watch out for bees!!!

    The money is in heading all the way up the North County Trailway and then getting on the Old Putnam Trail and heading up into the Croton Watershed area...beautiful scenery, smoothly paved bikeway...
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    Getting from the northern end of the SCT to the start of the North County Trailway is easy:

    The northern terminus of the SCT is Route 119, White Plains/Tarrytown Road, near the corner of Route 9A (Saw Mill River Road). What you do is continue riding north on 9A, for maybe a mile, until you see a huge Sam's Club on your left. Make a left at the Sam's Club (I believe the street is Warehouse Lane). Continue on Warehouse Lane to the end and you will see the start of the trail (on your right). Once on the North County Trail you can ride all the way to the Putnam County Trail (connects directly) which you can take all the way to Brewster.

    I have ridden both trails (and the Putnam) extensively and overall the North County Trail is nicer, particularly once you get north of Millwood. Below Millwood there are a couple of sections where you ride along the side of Route 100 (fast moving traffic) but there is a wide shoulder.

  14. #14
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    I rode the North County Trailway from Rt 117 to Yorktown for the first time last Sunday. In spite of the road stretches, it is a more interesting and less car-proximate path than the SCT, which runs along the Saw Mill River Parkway most of its length. No question the NCT is nicer past Millwood. The section north of Rt 100 is well away from any roads for long stretches, and winds through woods by streams and marshes. I'm looking forward to checking out the trail north of Yorktown.
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