Summer Festival and Helderberg Hike-a-Thon 2018

Choose your own outdoor adventure at our
Summer Festival and Helderberg Hike-a-Thon!

Registration opens in June for this free, one-of-a-kind experience.

Photo of 2017 Hike-a-Thon by Alex Nye Art

Find the special hike (or hikes) that best fits you and your family, and participate in a regional movement to get outside and explore the landscapes of the Capital Region.

Click here to see photos and read about the 2017 Summer Hike-a-Thon!

WHAT: This is the largest event of our 26th year, and we are celebrating with a special focus on family-friendly hikes and activities across the Conservancy’s Helderberg Conservation Corridor (one of our Conservation Priority Areas). This capstone event offers residents a menu of free outdoor activities from which to choose, inviting all ages and abilities to engage in hiking, biking, guided tours, workshops, educational sessions, and more. All hikes are led by naturalists and experts who are well-versed in the history, flora, and fauna of each trail. Free T-shirts and other giveaways will be given to hikers while supplies last!

After you conclude your morning activities, enjoy a relaxing afternoon conservation celebration with your family at our MHLC Summer Festival at Indian Ladder Farms. Join us for hay rides, face painting, and more, while enjoying local foods, live music, and craft beverages at the Indian Ladder Farms Cidery & Brewery.

WHERE: Across the Helderbergs! We’ll kick off the event at Indian Ladder Farms at 10 AM, with carpooling to various locations, and conclude the day with our Summer Festival at Indian Ladder Farms and the Indian Ladder Farms Cidery & Brewery.

WHEN: Saturday, July 21st. Guided hikes and activities will be offered between 10 AM and 2 PM. The Summer Festival will take place from noon until 4 PM.

WHO: The Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy (MHLC) is your local land trust. We work every day to improve the quality of life for all residents of the Capital Region by preserving natural spaces in Albany, Montgomery, and Schenectady Counties. We have protected more than 5,000 acres of land, including over 2,000 acres open to the public in our preserves.

GENERAL REGISTRATION INFORMATION: Online registration opens the first week in June and will remain open until Wednesday, July 18th..  Hike-a-thon t-shirts are available for purchase for $20 each with registration (while supplies last), and the first 100 hikers will receive a FREE t-shirt.

Questions?  Contact or 518-436-6346.

This event is free and open to the public. We invite you to design your own Hike-a-Thon experience, and to choose from the many hikes available below.

July 21 Hike-a-Thon Offerings:

1. Back to Nature
| Outdoor Yoga Session | Altamont 

Within the confines of a studio, yoga teachers do their best to create an ambience of soft lights and pleasant sounds, and even an aromatic experience. But striking a mood is perhaps just an attempt to evoke a natural setting—the great outdoors. Why settle for a replica of natural surroundings when you can have the real thing? This outdoor yoga session under the pines at Indian Ladder Farms will fill your senses with the beauty of the Conservancy’s Helderberg Conservation Corridor and provide you with an instantaneous freedom that cannot be replicated indoors. Pack a mat, grab the sunscreen/bug spray, and we’ll see you on the grass!

Starting time:  11:00 am

Starting point:  Participants will check-in at the MHLC Registration Table located in front of the café at Indian Ladder Farms

Distance: 0 miles

Difficulty: Easy


2. Wildflowers and Waterfall | Botany and Amphibians | New Scotland 

A family-friendly off-trail hike on one of the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy’s easements adjacent to the Heldeberg Workshop in the Town of New Scotland. This exclusive hike on private property will explore the beauty of the Conservancy’s Helderberg Conservation Corridor. Enjoy a waterfall, wildflowers and unique, scenic views of the Helderberg Escarpment from below. Hikers will encounter an active beaver pond and there may be sightings of red efts or other amphibians. Waterproof hiking boots or galoshes and long pants are recommended.

Starting time: 10 AM

Starting point: Martin Road Extension in the Town of New Scotland

Distance: 2 miles round trip

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate


3. Bozen Kill Preserve | Treasure Hunt Hike | Altamont

This self-guided hike is great for kids of all ages! Pick up your Bozen Kill Treasure Map at the kiosk and head off to explore the Conservancy’s Bozen Kill Preserve  at your own pace. From 10 AM to 1 PM, interact with Preserve Docents who will impart preserve “treasures” to you while you complete the activities listed on your treasure map. Complete the map and return to the kiosk to receive your prize.

Starting time: 10 AM

Starting point: Westfall Road, Altamont

Distance: 1.5 miles

Difficulty: Easy


4. Huyck Preserve | Wildlife Hike | Rensselaerville 

This MHLC Partner is located in the scenic hamlet of Rensselaerville, NY and has been connecting people to nature for more than 80 years. Enjoy a guided wildlife hike on a portion of the 12 miles of trails which ramble through 2000 acres of forest, field, and wetlands, and past the Rensselaerville Falls, which cascade over 120 feet. After your hike, stay for the afternoon and enjoy Lake Myosotis which is open to the public for kayaking and canoeing as well as fishing.

Starting time: 10:30 AM

Starting point: 5052 Delaware Turnpike, Rensselaerville

Distance: 1 mile

Difficulty: Easy


5. Keleher Preserve | Mountain Biking | Voorheesville 

Join mountain bikers from across the Capital Region to explore the Conservancy’s first preserve to open to mountain biking. The varied terrain, perfect for all riders, offers something for everyone. From 10 AM until 11 AM advanced bikers can enjoy the loop at a faster pace. Casual bikers will be welcomed at 11 AM.

Starting time: Advanced bikers at 10 am; Casual bikers at 11 am

Starting point: Gulf Hill Road, Voorheesville

Distance: 4 miles of trails

Difficulty: Moderate


6. Wolf Creek Falls Preserve | Wilderness Safety and Survival Skills | Knox 

Have you wondered what it takes to survive in the wild? Join Dave Muska of Ondatra Adventures as we explore fundamental skills and tools of wilderness survival at the Wolf Creek Falls Preserve. In this workshop you’ll be introduced to the skills necessary to keep yourself and loved ones safe in the forest and off trail. Dave will offer his knowledge and experience with skills such as shelter building, edible & medicinal plants, and fire building, friction fire, and more. This is a great course for hikers, backpackers, and outdoors people alike. All skill levels and interests are welcome.

Starting time: 10 AM to 1 PM

Starting point: Bozenkill Road, Altamont

Distance: 2 miles round trip

Difficulty: Easy


7. Indian Ladder Farms | History Walk (Accessible) | Altamont 

Explore the origins of Indian Ladder Farms. Founded in 1916 by Peter G. Ten Eyck, the grandfather of the current owner, Indian Ladder Farms began with the purchase of the Andrew Smith farm; this original farm house is located at the far end of the current parking lot. The original Smith barns across the street from Indian Ladder Farms have since been converted to a house. Over the years, as the farm began to grow, additional adjoining farms were purchased and the land was united to create Indian Ladder Farms. This accessible tour will educate participants on the fascinating history of the farm while exploring many of the farm’s original buildings and features.

Starting time: 10 am

Starting point: Hike check-in table at Indian Ladder Farms

Distance: 1.5 miles

Difficulty: Easy


8. Anderson House | Landscape Painting Workshop | Altamont

This Plein Air Painting Workshop takes place at the private home of the descendants of Victor Anderson (1882-1937). Victor Anderson was an American painter of the Hudson River School and was well known for his paintings and illustrations of rural life scenes and landscapes. This session will include a brief tour of the home and paintings followed by a plein air workshop from the home’s picturesque hay field with views of the Helderberg Escarpment. This session will include a landscape demonstration and individual instruction and critique. Any level of experience is welcome, but some basic, previous experience is recommended. The workshop will focus on design and composition, making a value plan in your sketchbook, basic techniques, and executing one or two small sketches. This four-hour workshop will include a 30 minute break for lunch. Participants will be required to supply and carry their own folding chair or stool, backpack, portable easel, painting supplies, and a bag lunch. A more formal supply list will be emailed upon registration.
Limited to 10 participants.

Starting time: 10 AM– 2 PM

Starting point: Altamont, NY

Distance: 0 miles

Difficulty: Easy


The Summer Festival & Hike-a-Thon is an annual celebration

hosted each summer by MHLC.

Thank you to our 2017 Sponsors:




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