New hiker diary: Exploring the Geyser Trail at Saratoga Spa State Park
On March 9th, the first 60 F+ warm spring day, I went on a guided hike of Geyser Trail in Saratoga Spa State Park. I have been on a mission to get my 10,000 steps a day in, as recommended by the American Heart Association. The group met at the official Park Office in Saratoga Spa State Park. There were about a dozen of us, ranging from experienced hikers to new hikers. Our tour guide, park naturalist Alli Schweizer gave us maps of the Geyser Trail and tidbits of history at the different spots along the Geyser Trail, pointing out different tree species and plants. The hike began at 10 am and we were back at the starting point, the end, by 12 noon.
If you go, be sure to bring a refillable bottle of water, and you can try out the Orenda spring, which has health benefits, but has a very strong sulfury taste to it. (If you want a guided tour of the 18 springs in Saratoga Spa State Park, contact the Roosevelt Baths and Spa and find out when Trent the water expert offers guided tours. Right now he has them on Tuesdays, Saturday and Sundays ($20). Reservations encouraged.
The trail itself is well-marked and with a few spectacular views. There were two short steep climbs, but for the most part the hike was easy to moderate for a new hiker. I used to run marathons back in my twenties, but these days a 3 mile hike in the park is enough to make feel like I’ve had a strenuous outdoor workout. The cost was $3. There are free hikes as well. Check out the Saratoga Spa State Park’s Facebook events page for other special guided hikes, like the 10,0000 step (5 Mile) hike that is happening April 12th or call the park at (518) 584-2000 for more info.