THOMAS J. BOYCE PARK

Wingdale, Dutchess County, NY


Directions:

From Hastings-on-Hudson; Sprain Brook Parkway north; US 287 east; US 684 north.  US 684 ends and the flow northward continues on Route 22.  Boyce Park is on the east side of NY 55 just north of the intersection with NY 22 and Dutchess County 21. Just to the south is Harlem Valley State Hospital.


Geology:

The Harlem Valley is a little arm of the Great Valley extending south between the gap between Taconic Mountain rocks on the west and the New England Upland on the east.  The actual names in this area are the West Mountain on the west and Hammersly Ridge and East Mountain on the east.  Ten Mile River flows through the northern part of the little arm.  Just north of the Thomas J. Boyce Park, Ten Mile River turns east to push through the gap between the East Mountain on the north and Hammersly Ridge on the South on its journey to the Housatonic River just south of Bull's Bridge, Connecticut.

Just west of  Thomas J. Boyce Park is the Swamp River that starts north of Pawling.  This looks like it flows north into Ten Mile River and thence into the Housatonic River.  South of Pawling is The Great Swamp.  This feeds into the East Branch of the Croton River.  

This is a calcite and dolomite marble trough deep in alkaline soils and glacial outwash. Many of the limey farm fields are abandoned and being colonized by either red cedar or family housing projects. On West Mountain some of the dark conifers are white and pitch pines.  The high spots in the valley floor are marble bedrock outcrops or, plainly put, marble hills, where rare plants grow.

Van Diver (1985:104) says that Route 22 north follows a system of valleys developed on carbonate rocks.  The hills surrounding the valley are mostly held up by crumpled schists (via metamorphized shales and graywackes).  Watch for several greenish-gray roadcuts.  These are Cambrian-Ordovician Stockbridge marble.  In addition, there are some exposed dark schists.  

Between Wingdale and Wassaic (12 miles) are seen sillimanite-grade rocks to staurolite-grade rocks. The valley is comparatively broad at this point. East Mountain (elevation 700 feet above the valley) is on the east side. East Mountain is held up by hard gneisses and quartzite. (Van Diver 1985:104)


History:

1923-24  --  Thomas J. Boyce was Dutchess County Post Commander of the American Legion.


Trails:

Park by the playground.  There is a huge lawn to the east.  Often people run their motorized toy planes here.  You are going to walk to the northeast section of this huge lawn area at the base of  the mountain.  You pick up a trail here that will take you to the top and then southward to a overlook platform.  Here people jump off  with their gliding wings -- what's it called, power gliding?  From here you can clearly see over Harlem Valley and West Mountain.  

E-mail Message received November, 2000:

I am the president of the Leather Hill Pilot's Association and the Boyce Park Flyers Organization, or the people that fly RC planes and hang gliders at Boyce Park in Wingdale, NY. Recently we have had issues at the park with undesirables causing havoc by riding ATV's in the park, which is strictly prohibited, and non-members gaining access, flying and crashing RC planes in the playground areas. Because of these actions the town of Dover has suspended all aeronautic activity until further notice. Thank you for your cooperation.

Peter J. Perrone
Boyce Park Flyers Org.
Leather Hill Pilot's Assoc.

P.S. There is a new landowner of the mountain and he most likely has deemed the platform area off limits to transients.


PLANT LIST:

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Acer pensylvanicum (goose-foot maple) 5/17/93
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Amelanchier arborea (common shadbush) 5/1/95
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula papyrifera (paper birch)
Carya glabra (pignut hickory)
Fraxinus americana (white ash) 5/1/95
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Populus deltoides (cottonwood tree)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Prunus virginiana (chokecherry) 5/17/93
Quercus prinus (chestnut oaks)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust) 6/03/94
Salix caprea (goat willow) 5/1/95
Salix sp. (willow)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus rubra (slippery elm)

Shrubs:
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry) 5/17/93
Cornus sericea (red-osier dogwood) 5/17/93 6/03/94
Cornus racemosa (gray-stemmed dogwood)
Elaeagnus umbellata (autumn olive) 5/17/93
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel)
Lonicera sp. (honeysuckle) 6/03/94
Rhamnus sp. (buckthorn)?
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus sp. (blackberry) 6/03/94
Vaccinium pallidum (hillside blueberry)
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)

Vines:
Celastrus orbiculatus (oriental bittersweet)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis sp. (grape vine)

Herbs:
Achillea millefolium (yarrow) 7/21/93
Actaea alba (doll's eyes) 5/17/93
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard) 5/17/93
Anemone quinquefolia (wood anemone) 5/17/93
Anemonella thalictroides (rue anemone) 5/17/93
Arabis canadensis (sicklepod)
Arabis glabra (tower mustard) 5/17/95
Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla) 5/17/93
Arctium sp. (burdock) 7/21/93 soon
Arisaema triphyllum (jack-in-the-pulpit)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed) 7/21/93
Baptisia tinctoria (wild indigo) 6/02/93
Barbarea vulgaris (common wintercress) 5/17/93
Calystegia sepium (field bindweed) 7/18/96 7/21/93
Castilleja sp. (Indian paintbrush) 6/03/94
Centaurea maculosa (spotted knapweed) 7/21/93
Chenopodium album (pigweed) 7/21/93
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum (ox-eyed daisy) 7/21/93
Cichorium intybus (chicory) 7/21/93
Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle) 7/21/93 7/18/96
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) 7/21/93
Erigeron annuus (daisy fleabane) 5/17/93 7/21/93
Erigeron strigosus (lesser daisy fleabane) 6/03/94
Eupatorium perfoliatum (boneset)
Galium verum (yellow bedstraw) 6/03/94 7/21/93
Galium mollugo (wild madder) 7/21/93
Geranium maculatum (wild geranium) 5/17/93 6/03/94
Hesperis matronalis (dame's rocket) 6/03/94
Hieracium pratense (field hawkweed) 6/03/94
Hypoxis hirsuta (yellow stargrass) 6/03/94
Lotus corniculatus (birdfoot trefoil) 5/17/93 7/21/93
Lychnis flos-cuculi (ragged robin) 5/17/93 with its pink flowers
Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife) 7/21/93
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower) 5/17/93
Matricaria matricarioides (pineapple weed) 6/02/93
Medicago sativa (alfalfa) 7/21/93
Melilotus alba (white sweet clover) 6/03/94 7/21/93
Melilotus officinalis (sweet yellow clover) 6/03/94 7/21/93
Mitella diphylla (mitrewort) 5/1/95
Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot) 7/18/96 7/21/93
Monotropa uniflora (Indian pipe)
Origanum vulgare (wild marjoram) 6/18/96 7/18/96 7/21/93
Ostrya virginiana (hop hornbeam)
Pastinaca sativa (wild parsnip) 7/21/93
Physalis heterophylla (clammy ground cherry) 7/21/93
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain) 6/03/94
Polygonatum biflorum (true Solomon's seal) 5/17/93
Polygonum virginianum (Virginia knotweed)
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil) 6/03/94
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal) 7/21/93
Ranunculus abortivus (kidney-leaf buttercup)
Ranunculus acris (tall buttercup) 5/17/93 6/03/94
Ranunculus bulbosus (bulbous buttercup) 6/03/94
Rudbeckia hirta v pulcherrima (black-eyed Susan) 6/03/94 7/18/96 7/21/93
Sanguinaria canadensis (bloodroot) 5/1/95
Saponaria officinalis (bouncing bet) 7/21/93
Senecio aureus (golden ragwort) 5/17/93 6/03/94
Silene vulgaris (bladder campion) 6/03/94
Silene latifolia (white campion) 5/17/93 6/02/93
Silene noctiflora (night-flowering catchfly) 5/17/93 6/03/94
Smilacina racemosa (false Solomon's seal) 517/93 soon
Solanum carolinense (horse nettle)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (dandelion) 5/01/95 5/17/93
Thalictrum dioica (early meadow rue)
Trifolium dubium (least hop clover) 5/17/93
Trifolium pratense (red clover) 6/03/94 7/21/93
Trifolium repens (white clover) 6/02/93
Trillium erectum (red trillium) 5/1/95 5/17/93
Triosteum perfoliatum (perfoliate horse gentian) 7/18/96
Tussilago farfara (coltsfoot) 5/1/95 and with puffs
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein) 7/21/93
Veronicastrum virginicum (culver's root) 7/21/93
Viola pubescens (downy yellow violet) 5/1/95 5/17/93
Viola sororia (common blue violet) 5/17/93
Zizia aurea (golden Alexanders) 6/03/94

Sedges:
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) 5/1/95
Carex lurida (sedge)

Grasses:
Anthoxanthum odoratum (sweet vernal grass)
Bromus inermis (smooth brome grass)
Bromus sp. (purplish brome grass? or chess?)
Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass)
Festuca sp. (fescue grass)
Phalaris arundinacea (reed canary grass)
Phleum pratense (timothy grass)
Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)
Tridens flavus (purple top grass)

Ferns and Fern Allies:
Adiantum pedatum (maidenhair fern)
Athyrium filix-femina (lady's fern)
Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)