Walking the Walkway

Saturday,  I took an invigorating walk over the Poughkeepsie Walkway, a wide long bridge built for pedestrians only, high above the Hudson River with views north and south.  I took the Metro North train out of Grand Central and an hour and forty-five minutes later I was in Poughkeepsie.

I only encountered one frustrating thing on this excursion of mine and that was the lack of signage with directions from the train station to the entrance of the Walkway. The website said “only a four block walk.”  Now, when I got out of the train I could see the bridge way up above me and people walking too and fro so I knew it was there but where was the entrance?  I wandered around for over thirty minutes taking photos and asking the friendly locals where I could find the entrance and received numerous directions but none that got me to the entrance. When I was just about ready to turn back to the station and go home I finally saw a tiny little sign that had the Walkway logo on it and an arrow which pointed up a very long winding street, I think it was Verrazzano Street or Avenue. I followed that for about ten minutes mumbling to myself and of course taking a few photos along the way. Finally, at the end of this street I just blindly made a left onto I think North Washington Street and saw Lola’s Cafe which someone told me to look for and lo and behold there was the entrance! Hallelujah! I said, as I raced up the stairs and entered the walkway.

I realized very quickly that I was going to have a little bit of a challenge in taking photos because the side railings were very high or at least very high to my 5′ 2″ stature, and a quarter of the way was an additional fence barrier above that which obstructed the view somewhat. I knew that they must have an area that would be open for people to enjoy the full breathtaking views and I wasn’t disappointed. The middle of the bridge is the best viewing area and standing on my tip toes and at times poking my lens in between the rails I was able to take some fantastic photos of trees dressed in their autumn finery of  yellow, green, red and gold, boats sailing by and trains choo-chooing  along the narrow banks of the Hudson River. Later in the afternoon dark and light grey clouds rolled in leaving little slits in the sky where rays of sun would light up the tops of the hills. I would suggest to take a wide angle telephoto lens like an 18-270 so you can capture both the wide vistas of the Hudson including the Mid Hudson Bridge and then zoom in on the passing freight trains or boats or the lovely little houses nestled in among the trees. Actually, some of my favorite shots were taken as I was walking back over the bridge toward the train station and had an aerial view of the surrounding area which looked like a tiny toy town.

The bridge was full of happy talkative locals and visitors like myself out strolling with  their children, dogs, neighbors or riding along on their bicycles. One of the best things about this Walkway are the “ambassadors” that they have walking along and answering questions regarding the history of the Walkway, the surrounding area or just to have a nice little chat with you. I was lucky enough to meet the past Chairman of The Walkway Over the Hudson  Fred W. Schaeffer attorney, avid bike rider and one of the original planners who put forward this fantastic idea of a pedestrian walkway or bridge across the river.  The Walkway is a good reason for getting out of the house, tying on the sneakers or getting on the bike and experiencing the freedom of the great outdoors without the stress of vehicular traffic. A place to  socialize face to face outside of the internet at a leisurely pace with no particular place to go.

I hope you enjoy the images below and on my website and treat yourself to a nice long wonderful walk across the Poughkeepsie Walkway.

Stay In Focus,