Hudson Highlands


Hudson Highlands

The Hudson Highlands are the mountains on both sides of the Hudson River in the U.S. state of New York, between Newburgh Bay and Haverstraw Bay. They form the northern region of the New York - New Jersey Highlands, though they are commonly viewed as starting in the south at Dunderberg Mountain on the west side of the river near Stony Point and ending to the north at Sour Mountain near Fishkill, New York. They have played important parts in America's military, cultural and environmental history.

Formed when glaciers cut through the Appalachian Mountains here, the Highlands are among the lowest summits in that range (indeed, the Appalachian Trail reaches its lowest elevation in the Trailside Zoo between Bear Mountain State Park and Bear Mountain Bridge). Conversely, the river becomes narrower and deeper through the Highlands, reaching its deepest point of 216 feet (66 m), near Garrison. Many stretches are challenging to navigate, earning nicknames like "World's End."

History

Henry Hudson and his crew on the "Half Moon" were the first Europeans to see the Highlands when they explored the river in 1609.

The mountains became strategically important during the American Revolutionary War, when it was important for the Continental Army to hold the river valley and prevent the British from cutting New England off from the rest of the colonies. The Hudson River Chain was cast from nearby iron mines and stretched across the river from the fort at West Point to prevent British ships from going upriver. The fort is today the site of the United States Military Academy.

Several decades after independence, Thomas Cole started an artistic movement by painting America's wild and rugged landscapes— especially, at first, the Highlands— with the stark contrasts and shadows they offered, in a way that suggested raw nature, a world reborn. After the movement had faded, a critic derisively referred to the movement as the Hudson River School; the name stuck as the label for the new nation's first homegrown artistic movement.

In the early 20th century, in response to damage caused by quarrymen and loggers in the Highlands, local conservationists began to press for public ownership of the area's woods and mountains. Their efforts paid off in the first of several state parks that now blanket the chain.

Later that century, an ambitious power-generating plan that would have dug into Storm King Mountain led to a landmark lawsuit by environmental groups that made history when the judge ruled that aesthetic impacts of such large projects could be considered.

Mountains of the Hudson Highlands

"East" (north to south)
*Sour Mountain
*Beacon Mountain
*Scofield Ridge
*North Sugarloaf
*Breakneck Ridge
*Bull Hill aka Mt. Taurus
*South Redoubt and North Redoubt
*Sugarloaf Hill
*White Rock
*Canada Hill
*Anthony's Nose

"West" (north to south)
*Storm King Mountain
*Crow's Nest
*Popolopen Torne
*Bear Mountain
*West Mountain
*Bald Mountain
*Dunderberg Mountain

ee also

*Storm King State Park
*Hudson Highlands State Park
*Bear Mountain State Park
*Harriman State Park
*Sterling Forest State Park
*Black Rock Forest
*Reading Prong

External links

* [http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/nyc/highlands/highlands.html USGS - The Highlands Province]
* [http://nysparks.state.ny.us/parks/info.asp?parkID=130 NYS - Hudson Highlands State Park]


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