Where: Cranberry Bog, Riverhead
What: Hiking (trail, unpaved)
Snacks: Mustache Brewery, Riverhead
If there are people in your life that aren’t outdoorsy and they want to be Cranberry Bog is a great introduction. The mile or so path is clear with minimal debris. There are enough view points to make even the biggest curmudgeon smile.
To get there, use the address for the Wildwood Lanes. If you are coming from Rt. 58 the trail head will be after the bowling ally to the left. If you’re coming from the traffic circle it will be on your right. The trailhead is well marked with a prominent sign.
Enter the trail by going around the gate. I have yet to see it open as it is to prevent vehicles from driving to the water. Walk forward toward the lake. You’ll know when you’re there, you can see it through the trees. Once you get to the lake, veer right and follow the loop around the lake. There are plenty of little view points along the way. Roughly a third of the way around a loop, there will be a concrete structure to your right. It is typically covered in graffiti but, I have yet to see anyone nefarious.
The bridge pictured below indicates that your nature jaunt is almost finished. You’ll walk over the lily pad strewn water and feel like you’re far away from Long Island.
Pair this short hike with a tasting at Mustache Brewery. Flavors rotate. Cheers! There as several other breweries, and hard cider breweries in or around Riverhead. Off the top of my head I can think of Crooked Ladder, Woodside and Long Ireland.
Riverhead is a popular tourist destination so if drinking isn’t your thing there is a bustling Main Street with cute eateries and an aquarium. I highly recommend Blue Duck Bakery for its cafe and abundance of pasties. I’m a dessert person, what can I say! If none of these fit the bill, there is always Tanger Outlet.
See you on the trails!