The Best Summer Getaways: New York, New York

Play the city slicker

May 14, 2012
Outside Magazine
Hudson River getaway

Hudson River getaway    Photo: Stuart Conway/Redux

In summer, most Manhattanites looking for an outdoor fix race off the island. But with a MetroCard and a little creativity, it’s possible to spend the day fishing, kayaking, and mountain biking without crossing a single bridge or tunnel. Start at Battery Park City, at the southwest tip of Manhattan, for surprisingly good striped bass fishing. The area around Wagner Park and Pier A is usually best. Spin fishermen: use diving lures. Fly-fishermen: you want an 8- to 10-weight rod with some clouser minnows and baitfish patterns. (You’ll also want a conservative backcast.) Pick up flies from Urban Angler on Fifth Avenue between 25th and 26th streets. Next stop: Pier 66, just west of 12th Avenue and 26th Street. There you’ll find the Manhattan Kayak Company, whose guides give lessons on the Hudson and take serious boaters on tours around the Statue of Liberty, where the currents can get hairy. (Half-day classes from $175; guided trips, $40–$175). Last stop: the five-year-old Highbridge Park trail system, which straddles the rocky cliffs above Harlem River Drive between 155th and Dyckman streets. It’s got a 1.5-mile freeride trail and a jump park designed by pros. Take the 1 train to Dyckman Street and look for the trailhead across from Fort George Hill. Pedal Pusher Bike Shop on Second Avenue and East 69th Street rents Gary Fisher bikes (from $28 per day).