BRIARCLIFF MANOR POCANTICO PARK

Westchester County, NY


Directions:

Saw Mill River Parkway north; get off at the Hawthorne Exit; turn left onto route 9A; go straight and get off at the exit for Pleasantville Road. Turn left on Pleasantville Road. Set odometer at 0.00 and at 0.2 of a mile turn left onto South State Road; at 1.1 mile turn right onto E. Long Hill Road; at 1.55 turn left onto Cedar Drive; at 2.05 miles turn left onto Laurel Lane and park at 2.1 miles.


Habitats:

Oak-hickory rocky, dry area; river floodplain; tussock sedge marsh


Trials:

There are only paths marked with round, plastic, yellow trail markers. If you keep going straight southwest and south the trail stays on the high ground and will turn you around and circle you back going clockwise returning to the same yellow trial. The trail was very badly kept. (I pushed a hell of a lot of logs and sticks off the path.)

I turned back and took the path that I passed by earlier (on the right I was going south). This path leads downhill and does the same thing (turns you around and back onto the same trail). To get to the more interesting areas you have to leave the path and walk down to a small stream/marsh that feeds into the Pocantico River. I followed this stream and walked across a tussock marsh sedge to get to the Pocantico River.

The town should extend the trails down to the stream and river. It's a shame to have to stay only in the woods per se.


PLANT LIST:

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree of heaven)
Betula lenta (black birch) 4/30/99
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood) 4/30/99 bracts out
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash) 4/30/99
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust)
Salix caprea (goat willow) 4/30/99
Salix sp. (willow)

Shrubs:
Alnus sp. (alder)
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry) 4/30/99
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Lindera benzoin (spice bush)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry)
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum)

Vines:
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)

Herbs:
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard) 4/30/99
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster)
Cardamine concatenata (cut-leaved toothwort) 4/30/99
Claytonia virginiana (spring beauty) 4/30/99
Dicentra cucullaria (Dutchman's britches)
Erythronium americanum (trout lily)
Geum canadense (white avens)
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed)
Lemna sp. (duckweed)
Narcissus sp. (daffodil)
Nymphaea odorata (white water lily) probably
Ranunculus hispidus var. caricetorium (swamp buttercup?)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Urtica sp. (stinging nettle)
Viola blanda (white violet; 4 flat, not twisted white petals, and a dipping lower lip like a scoop with lots of purple lines) 4/30/99
Viola sororia (common blue violet) 4/30/99

Rushes and Sedges:
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) 4/30/99
Carex stricta (tussock sedge) 4/30/99

Grasses:
Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)

Ferns:
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)