Originally we intended to go early morning and hike for the first half of the day trip and then barbecue and swim for the other half. Unfortunately, we woke up a bit too late. I know, shocker. It took us about an hour to drive to Harriman State Park from New Jersey.This was the only time Google maps has failed me. There are many camp grounds in, both private and public so once you get to around the area you want to go, follow the street signs.
If you don’t decide to hike, choose a lake and park near it. If you want sand and a lifeguard, visit Lake Welch Beach. Fair warning because when I passed by the beach, it was beyond crowded. We were trying to decide between Lake Skenonto, Kanawauke, Sebago or Tiorati. We ultimately decided on Lake Kanawauke. When you arrive at the parking lot for the lake, there is a parking fee. Lake Kanawauke was six dollars. There weren’t too many people and majority of people were grilling. There are signs that say No Swimming. Keep in mind that you are responsible for your own safety. Please do not go in the water if you are not able to maintain your safety (or swim).There are other people canoeing, fishing and even wildlife such as geese, so please be well aware of your surroundings.
We brought two floaties with us, a watermelon and our rubber ducky. READ THE INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE. We did not bring pumps either electric or manual so we spent close to an hour just blowing these guys up. Thank you to the biker who felt so bad for us that he used his CO2 bike pump to help us. If you are reading this, I would love to replace the two you used for us!
Once we got both the watermelon and duck inflated, we got them in the water and started playing around. Luckily, we found a long stick to maneuver ourselves around. The depth by the shore is very shallow and easy to stand however, once you get 3 feet away from shore, it drops dramatically. We drifted around for quite a while and got made of by some kids. We watched some kids play volleyball and cornhole. Harriman State Park is such a good daytrip to get out of the city and into some nature. Unfortunately it isn’t possible to take public transportation here but get a group of friends together, rent a car and day trip or camp overnight at Harriman State Park in either a tent or a rented cabin.