A hidden gem nestled just minutes from New York City, The Great Swamp sounds like a place you might not want to visit, but it's beautiful part of the Hudson Valley that you're really going to want to check out. Time Warner Cable News' Meredith Zaritheny filed the following report for NY1.
"...gliding down the river, it was like you were in the last of great wild places," says Friends of the Great Swamp Education Chairwoman Judy Kelley-Moberg.
Most people think of swamps as foreboding places—but there's more than meets the eye, when it comes to The Great Swamp.
"It's a beautiful place to walk. It feels tropical, you know. It's not your normal pavement walk, you know, it's nice to get out of the office for a little while," says hiker Morgaux Miller.
The more than 400-acre wildlife management area is located in Putnam County
and is a popular destination for many outdoor recreational activities.
"Hiking, kayaking, watching nature. A little bit of solitude, a little bit of wildness—it's all right here in our backyard," says naturalist Beth Herr.
"Covering more than 6,000 acres the Great Swamp is one of the largest fresh water wetlands in the State-- and it's only a little more than an hour from New York City."
"It's beautiful. It's very, uh, peaceful, picturesque," Miller says.
Stretching from Dutchess County to Putnam County, The Great Swamp is protected by the several organizations, including many that offer educational tours.
"I've taken tracking teams out and we've tracked and watched otter playing in the swap throwing fish around," Kelley-Moberg
Recognized by the USDA Forest Service as a Highland Conservation Focal Area, naturalists and hikers alike hope many generations will have the opportunity to enjoy the Great Swamp and all it's beauty.
"Very relaxing...and it's a great asset to the community. We're really lucky to have it," says Miller.