The Marbletown O&W Rail Trail is part of the old O&W Railroad bed that ran from Kingston to Ellenville until its demise in 1957. Taken over by Ulster County at that time, the Marbletown portion of the trail is now owned by the Town of Marbletown. The Marbletown portion runs from the Hurley town line south to the Rochester town line through the Town of Marbletown for approximately nine miles, and is designated as a linear park for the town. Main trail heads with parking are located at Marcott Road and Cottekill Road, with newly enlarged parking at the Leggett Road trail head. The trail is maintained by the Marbletown Trails Committee. Established in 2009 by the Town Board, the Marbletown Trails Committee’s main focus is the Marbletown O&W Rail Trail and future connections to that trail.
Your Marbletown Trails Committee
The Trails Committee meets monthly throughout the year and is chaired by Carl Pezzino. Committee members are each stewards of the six segments of the trail. These trail stewards are:
Sandy Sheeley, Zoe Moffitt and Dan Proctor Marcott Rd North to Town Line
John Michalski Cottekill Rd North
Rich Hines Cottekill Rd South to K9 Marker
Ron Pierce and Brooke Pickering-Cole Leggett Rd North to K9 Marker
Heather Moody and Guy Cooper Leggett Rd South to State Route 213
Andy Lutz, Tim Sharpe and Bill Eggers Rest Plaus Rd North to Rte. 213
Larry Skalla and Paul Bogart Rest Plaus Rd South to Rochester Town line
Carl Pezzino, Committee Chair
In addition, Michael Warren, Town Supervisor and George Dimler, Superintendent of Highways are at-large members of the committee.
General Trail Committee Activities
Since the fall of 2009 the trail has been maintained and improved by the Marbletown Trails Committee, an all volunteer group of dedicated citizens who have already made substantial improvements by painting the access gates, removing graffiti from kiosks and signage, and clearing, widening and cleaning up the trail. In 2010 the trail was opened from end to end, from the Hurley town line to the Rochester town line. This was achieved by significant bush whacking of the most southerly section from Rest Plaus Road south to the abutments at Kripplebush Creek in December of 2010. Also in 2010, a contracted mowing plan was advanced by the committee and now provides a level trail to traverse.
A Few Rules and Requests
When traveling the trail on bike, horseback or just jogging please call out or ring your bike bell to slower moving pedestrians ahead of you so that they may safely give you right of way.
While the user portion of the trail runs from ten feet to fifteen feet wide, the ownership of the trail by the town actually conforms to the 66 foot width originally bought up by the New York Ontario and Western Rail Road (the “O&W”)in the early nineteen hundreds. Trail users are asked to respect these limits. Please do not to wander off the cleared portion of the trail on to private land.
Adjacent private land owners are reminded not to place any structures, gardens, fences, etc on Town of Marbletown O&W Rail Trail property.
In August 2012 the Town Board enacted the dogs must be leashed regulation for the entire 8.7 miles of the rail trail. This was done upon recommendation of the Marbletown Trails Committee. The rule now conforms to many of the rail trails in the area and should make the trail a safe and pleasure filled experience for all trail users. Dog owners are asked to obey this rule and also the committee asks that you please clean up after your pet. New signs with these requests have been placed at each entrance to our rail trail.
On Going Maintenance Still A Top Priority
Even with all of the annual improvements listed below, your committee is most busy clearing storm debris and making the trail wider, smoother and more pleasurable. Monthly maintenance activity year round is what makes it happen. Additionally, the contracted mowing of the trail has allowed the committee more time to focus on trail widening and expansion.
Brochures Are A Big Hit
Our Marbletown O&W Rail Trail brochures, originally designed and printed through a Greenway grant in 2011 are so popular that they had to be reordered for the second time. To date over 5,000 have been placed in our trail kisoks and at local merchants and B&B’s. This kind of volume, over a little more than a year, indicates the increasing popularity of our trail. Go to the bottom of this page to download the brochure.
Thanks so much to the Marbletown Highway Dept. for the time and labor put into resurfacing the Marbletown Rail Trail just south of Cottekill Rd, before the hill and bridge. When you get a chance, check it out! Also, we can’t thank enough the rail trail volunteers who spend countless hours clearing fallen trees, weed wacking, clearing drainage pipes, picking up garbage, etc. They are truly dedicated to making the trail a beautiful and safe place. Enjoy the trail, especially in the next few months. Its a gorgeous time of year.
Make sure you say hello to this fellow trail enthusiast between Cottekill Rd and Marcott Rd. He is quite often heard saying hello to hikers.
2015 Year End Report From The Marbletown O&W Rail Trail Committee
This year the trails team focused on erosion prevention, drainage improvements and trail resurfacing. Trail widening and fallen or leaning tree removals went on as required by committee members. The beaver pond and dams continued to be a nuisance that had to be remedied almost weekly during the Spring and Fall wet seasons.
Specific jobs were as follows:
Install drainage ditch approximately 1,000 feet; recover and open up 16” cast iron drainage pipe south of Rest Plaus road resulting significant drying and improvement of the trail in that segment. Work done by Garland Excavation, much of it Pro Bono.
Annual drainage improvement of the area south of Cottekill road for about 1,000 feet. Also another 1,000 feet north of Marcott trail head. This work coordinated by the chair with the work done by Ulster County probation department’s community service group.
Resurfacing of approximately 500′ of trail by Highway Dept. north of the Damon crossing north of Leggett road. Huge improvement for walking and biking. Done with trail budget dollars.
Repair of eroded embankment at Benjamin Brook large culvert near Rondout Manufacturing. Work done by Highway Dept. with trail budget dollars.
Removal of large stump at intersection of Boice’s driveway; recover and open 12” cast iron culvert at same location. Work done by committee.
Resurfacing of Leggett road trail entry for approximately 200′ covering protruding roots and filling in wet areas . Done by Highway with trail budget dollars..
Scheduled mowing of the 8.7 mile trail during mowing season resulting in significant widening of the trail. This well done work was done by highway.
The chair attended monthly Ulster County Trails Advisory Committee monthly meetings.
The chair coordinated the initial year of O&W rail trail coalition of municipalities monthly meetings. New trail maps and signage are currently being developed by this group. Initial trail signs for Hurley (engraved by USHECO at no charge) earmarking the trail to Kingston have been completed and will be installed soon.
The committee has just received a $2100 grant for kiosk map design and replacement from the Mohonk Preserve.
Happy to report that the Boy Scout Eagle Project of scout Andrew Davis for erecting a new kiosk at Rest Plaus road and reroofing the kiosks at Rte. 213 and Leggett road has been completed. Soon there will be a redesigned sign to complement these kiosks done by the committee.
Thanks to our Highway Department, The UC Probation Department, Garland Excavation, USHECO of Rosendale, Marian McCorkle Design, the Mohonk Preserve and of course our very active Marbletown O&W Rail Trail Committee team members.
Carl Pezzino, Chair
A History of Annual Trail Activities 2014 to 2011
2014 Committee Activities
Bridge Over Kripplebush Creek is completed
(August 2014) The new span over Kripplebush Creek completes the trail connection to the Town of Rochester. Engineering design of the bridge was done by Scott Davis and his staff at Peak Engineering of Stone Ridge. Construction was done by Ed Garland of Garland Excavation in Cottekill. The majority of financing was provided through a 1994 right of way agreement with Central Hudson.
The trail may now be entered from Kyserike Road at Williams Lumber to travel north into the town of Marbletown allowing an uninterrupted connection to Rest Plaus Road and continuing on to the town of Hurley. This part of the trail has been widened with considerable attention paid to drainage. More work of clearing and drainage is yet to be done on this portion of the trail, but trail users are invited to discover this beautiful portion of the trail. Users are reminded that the entire O&W trail is off limits to motorized vehicles and hunting.
Silos at Cottekill are blocked up for safety
(June 2014) The historic grain silos at the Cottekill trail parking lot have had their openings blocked up to prevent vandalism and ensure safety. The committee provided clean up activities around the area. Masonry work was provided by Roger Wells.
2013 Committee Activities
New Parking area behind Cottekill Fire House
Thanks to the generous right of way provided by the Cottekill Fire District, a large parking area designated for the trail was constructed in 2013. Garland Construction provided the material, equipment and labor at cost. Our own trail budget line paid for the work. The bumper railing was constructed by the Trail Committee. This is much needed parking for the entrance to the trail at Cottekill.
Expanded Parking at Marcott Road
Parking was expanded by three car widths at Marcott Road by removing a large, mostly dead, tree and installing 20 feet of culvert and fill and gravel. This was again done by Garland Construction at cost.
Welcome to Marbletown signs
A Welcome Marbletown O&W Rail Trail sign was constructed and placed by the committee at the northern entry to our trail from Hurley. A similar sign will be placed on the south side of the Kripplebush Creek, near the Rochester town line, once the bridge is installed there in 2014.
New Picnic Tables
In a move to provide additional and more pleasurable rest areas new picnic tables were purchased at cost from Marbletown Hardware and placed at the Marcott, Cottekill, Leggett, Rte. 213 and Rest Plaus Road entry areas. Benches formerly at these entry points were placed at interior trail sites (the Beaver Pond, Lilac Hill, Leggett south overview of the pond and airport field, and the brook just south of Rondout Manufacturing. All the assembly and movements were performed by the trail committee.
Rest Plaus Road Trail bridge is completed
On December 5, 2013 the Rest Plaus Road trail bridge was delivered and installed. It has become an icon of all the hard work done by committee volunteers and contractors alike. Providing engineering design and project management was Scott Davis, principal owner of Peak Engineering of Stone Ridge, major pre construction excavation was done by former Highway Superintendent Doug Stevens, construction of the foundation and excavation was done by P.J. Colucci Excavation of Gardiner using the standard bid process. Final construction of the access railings was provided by Roger Wells. We look forward to full use of the bridge, and the trail south, this Spring.
Kripplebush Creek bridge is ready to go
Also in December 2013, the steel and decking to cross the Kipplebush Creek was delivered to a holding area at Rest Plaus road. A significant effort remains to move the steel and decking appoximately on half mile south to the abutments at the creek, create the footings for the bridge and install it. When completed the bridge will form the final stepping stone of the connection to the Rochester O&W trail. Plans call for installation by Summer 2014. Preliminary excavation was done by Doug Stevens.
2012 Committee Activities
Bird Houses For “Rent” On The Trail
Early this year your Trails Committee placed nine bird houses along the trail. They not only provide “affordable” housing for our feathered friends, but are a silent indicator that the trail user is one half mile from the nearest O&W rail road mile markers. The mile markers indicate how many miles it is to Kingston (K) or Ellenville (E). Check it out.
New Trail Signs Mark The Way
The Marbletown Trails Committee has recognized the need for signage indicating the trail path.Signs that indicate Marcott Road, Cottekill Road, Leggett Road, State Rte. 213 (and the path to take using the newly completed sidewalks to the traffic light) and Rest Plaus Road were manufactured free of charge by Wayne Schaeffer of USHECO Company, and painted and installed by the committee. Additional pedestrian stop signs along these points were also installed.
Committee Members Wear New Safety Vests
In January 2012 committee members began wearing new yellow safety vests with the Marbletown O&W Rail Trail logo designed by local resident Marian McCorkle. Trail stewards will be wearing these vests during our regularly scheduled work parties. Please say “hello” and thank them when you see these volunteers working on the trail.
Rest Plaus Road trail bridge grant awarded
The town applied for grant funding for a bridge over Rest Plaus Road through New York State Parks and Recreation. In December 2012 this grant was awarded! The bridge will eliminate the safety issues of this hazardous road crossing and provide for enhanced maintenance of the trail south of Rest Plaus Road. Bridge completion is expected by the end of 2013.
Route 213 and Trail intersection improvements
This intersection now has greatly improved safety and access to the rail trail. The new sidewalks, funded by a state grant, provide safe movement of trail users from the trail to the light at Lucas Avenue (County Route 1) and return to the trail. The new handrail on the hill provides assisted access to the southern entrance of the trail from Route 213.
Cottekill Hill Improvements
15 Lilacs, provided at cost by Davenport Farms, have been planted on the hill a quarter of a mile south of the Cottekill trail parking area. In addition a new 100 foot hand rail has been built to help with safe transit up and down the hill. A sign marking the abrupt downhill turn and an erosion preventing drainage swale have been installed at the top of the hill.
Bridge widened behind High Falls train station
The 4 foot wide trail bridge was widened to 8 foot providing much needed mower access to the trail south to Route 213. The trail path was also widened and made more traversible.
2011 Committee Activities
Future plans call for general trail bed improvements, trail bridges over both Rest Plaus Road and the Kripplebush Creek, improved trail access at Route 213, and new and improved signage. The funding for these activities will come from our limited trail budget and futrue grant awards. One such award was obtained from the Hudson Valley Greenway for a trail brochure and website design. The brochure was designed and printed in June, 2011. You can pick one up at any kiosk along the trail. Additionally, in 2011, the Leggett Road parking lot was expanded by the Town Highway Department to accomodate more trail users.
A 2011 Plan Achievement — We Did It!! Rest Plaus Road Bridge 12/19/2013
Download: Marbletown Rail Trail Brochure