Pocantico Lake Park
Old Sleepy Hollow Road, Briarcliff Manor, Westchester County, NY
164 acres.


There are three places where you can park. The one I went to first was reached the following way: Route 9A north; get off at the exit for Route 117; turn left onto Route 117; drive 0.3 of a mile and turn left onto Route 448; drive only 0.1 of a mile and turn right onto Sleepy Hollow Road; drive 0.9 of a mile and turn right onto Pocantico Lake Road 2; park at the dead end area.

There is a parking area further down on Sleepy Hollow Road just before the intersection with Old Sleepy Hollow Road. This parking area is the southern end of the park.

There is also a parking area at the northeastern end of the lake at the dead end of Pocantico Lake Road Number One (reached off of Sleepy Hollow Road (northwestern side of the lake).


The park is a former water supply reservoir.


Hiking, fishing, equestrian and nature study. Adjacent to the park and its trail system are private equestrian riding facilities.


9/19/03. This was the day after Hurricane Isabel hit North Carolina and came up through Pennsylvania. Here the wind was somewhat strong and there were quite a few downed sticks and limbs, but not excessively so. And so it appears we in this area got off lightly.

I walked from the northeastern end of the trail along the southeastern side of Pocantico Lake to its end along Sleepy Hollow Road and back. With binoculars one can see part of the dam at the far side of the lake. A short side path takes the hiker to the dam. Below the dam one can see the remains of some buildings. One appears to be the old pump works and another is probably the house of the dam worker family. Returning to the main path I follow it down gradually to the area below the dam. Here one can follow the old road along the Pocantico River. The Department of Public Works appears to have a shack here as there were a number of their vehicles in the area near the river. I walked all the way to Sleepy Hollow Road and then returned by following an informal path up along the embankment to the top of the dam; then along the side path to the main path and back to the parking lot.

There is a stone pump house and a river spillway/dam that are in poor condition.

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney
* = plant in bloom, 9/19/03

Acer platanoides (Norway maple)
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Caprinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Ilex opaca (Americana holly)
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Paulownia tomentosa (empress tree)
Pinus sp. (pine tree)
Platanus occidentalis (Americana sycamore)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust)
Salix sp. (willow tree)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Thuja occidentalis (arbor vitae)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus americana (Americana elm)

Shrubs and sub-shrubs:
Alnus serrulata (smooth alder)
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Chimaphila maculata (striped wintergreen)
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Leucothoe sp. (leucothoe)
Ligustrum sp. (privet)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush)
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Myrica pensylvanica (bayberry)
Pachysandra terminalis (pachysandra)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Salix discolor (pussy willow)
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum)

Ampelopsis brevipedunculata (porcelain berry)
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Hedera helix (English ivy)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Sicyos angulatus (one-seeded cucumber)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis labrusca (fox grape)

Acalypha sp. (three-seeded mercury)
Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)
Agrimonia gryposepala (agrimony) *
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Ambrosia trifida (giant ragweed)
Amphicarpaea bracteata (hog peanut)
Arctium sp. (burdock)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster) *
Aster sp. (heath aster type) *
Bidens sp. (beggar ticks) *
Callitriche sp. (water starwort)
Cardamine impatiens? (Narrow-leaved bittercress)?
Chenopodium album (pigweed)
Cichorium intybus (chicory) *
Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle) *
Conyza canadensis (horseweed)
Cryptotaenia canadensis (honewort)
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) *
Desmodium glutinosum (pointed-leaved tick trefoil) *
Epifagus virginiana (beech drops)
Erechtites hieraciifolia (pileweed)
Erigeron annuus (daisy fleabane) *
Euthamia graminifolia (grass-leaved goldenrod) *
Galium mollugo (wild madder)
Geum canadense (white avens)
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed) *
Lepidium virginicum (poor man's pepper)
Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife)
Nymphaea odorata (fragrant white water lily)
Oxalis sp. (yellow wood sorrel) *
Pilea pumila (clearweed)
Plantago major (common plantain)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed) *
Polygonum hydropiperoides (mild water pepper) *
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal)
Rumex obtusifolius (broad dock)
Scrophularia sp. (figwort)
Solidago canadensis var. scabra (tall goldenrod) *
Solidago rugosum (rough-leaved goldenrod) *
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion)
Trifolium pratense (red clover) *
Urtica dioica v. dioica (stinging nettle) *
Verbascum blattaria (moth mullein)
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein)
Veronica officinalis (common speedwell)
Wolffia sp. (water meal)

Juncus tenuis (path rush)

Carex laxiflora (loose-flowered sedge)
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)
Cyperus sp. (nut or umbrella sedge)

Cinna arundinacea (wood reed grass)
Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass)
Digitaria sp. (crab grass)
Echinochloa crus-galli (barnyard grass)
Eragrostis spectabilis (purple love grass)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Schizachyrium scoparium (little blue stem grass)
Setaria faberi (nodding foxtail grass)
Setaria glauca (yellow foxtail grass)
Tridens flavus (purple top grass)

Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (hay-scented fern)
Athyrium filix-femina (lady fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)