Catskills and Greene County Motorcycle Route and Map

Motorcycle loop #1: Heady heights and endless waterfalls in the Catskills and Greene County


In Tannersville, I always stop for the famous fondue at the Last Chance Cheese and Antiques Café

Photographs by Michael Nelson

This route starts out at Stella’s Station in Saugerties, a seasonal old-fashioned sports bar/ice cream parlor, which is packed with bikers from Memorial Day through Labor Day. From there, the trail heads west out of town and quickly joins up with the infamous Platte Clove Road, also known as County Route 16. This narrow, twisting, two-lane highway — with no guard rails — climbs 1,200 feet in just 1.4 miles on its way to the top of Platte Clove Mountain and the area known as Devil’s Kitchen. On the way up it borders 12 waterfalls. You have to dismount and hike a bit in order to see them, but it’s worth the effort and you’ll be rewarded with a number of swimming holes. (Extreme caution is advised: accidents do occur.) If you are a fan of the Hudson River School of painting, you may well recognize some of the stunning spots captured by the likes of Thomas Cole.

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kaaterskill falls

Counter-clockwise from left: Parking at Kaaterskill Falls is much easier on a motorcycle. The Saugerties Lighthouse and the swimming hole at Haines Falls are popular tourist spots

saugerties lighthouse swimming haines falls

The road then plateaus on top of the mountain, offering open spaces and beautiful vistas. I cruise through the quaint resort town of Tannersville before heading down the mountain on Route 23A. I stop at both the world-famous Kaaterskill Falls and Haines Falls, home of one the region’s very best swimming holes. I finish the ride at the 1869 Saugerties Lighthouse, where I sit for a moment of contemplation on the banks of the Hudson.

Catskill Loop Directions:

  1. Start at Stella's Restaurant in Saugerties
  2. Travel north on Rte. 9W for one block
  3. Turn left onto Rte. 218
  4. Travel approximately three miles to Rte. 35, then turn right
  5. Travel two miles, then turn left onto W. Saugerties Rd./Rte. 33
  6. Travel two miles, then arrive at the foot of Platte Cove
  7. Travel up mountain for roughly two miles
  8. Continue on Plattekill Rd. for five miles until you arrive on Rte. 23A in Tannersville
  9. Turn right onto Rte. 23A and continue for seven miles
  10. Turn right onto Rte. 32A and continue for two miles
  11. Merge south onto Rte. 32
  12. Continue for several miles, then turn left onto Malden Tpke./Rte. 34
  13. Turn right onto Rte. 9W
  14. Continue straight onto Mydenderse St.
  15. Travel one mile to lighthouse
  16. Enjoy your ride!
» Return to Best Motorcycle Routes in 2013


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