Experience the rugged beauty of the South Fork’s Atlantic coastline when you explore the hiking trails, fishing spots and scenic viewpoints in this nature reserve.
Shadmoor State Park is an idyllic getaway in Montauk, where pretty woodlands and freshwater wetlands are next to spectacular bluffs. Explore the hiking trails on the cliff top or clamber down to the broad sweep of ocean beach. With its gorgeous views and nature preserve, Shadmoor State Park is the perfect spot for a picnic.
Explore the scenic bluffs lining the 100-acre (40-hectare) park. The dense shadbush growing across the area inspired the park’s name. A network of hiking and biking trails crisscrosses the parkland, showcasing the region’s different ecosystems. Find pretty woodlands populated with black cherry trees, as well as small groupings of the endangered sandplain gerardia flowers. In winter, the park’s hiking and biking trails are popular with cross-country skiers.
As you explore, look for the historic sites that have given the park its nickname of “the Bunkers.” Two concrete structures were used as observation bunkers during World War II. These were formerly equipped with artillery guns in order to protect the coast from potential invaders. Appreciate the sweeping views across the coast from these strategically placed structures.
Check out the park’s pristine freshwater wetlands. Keen birdwatchers will love the park’s elevated observation decks. Watch for migratory shorebirds circling overhead and woodland birds amid the shadbush.
Rugged 70-foot (20-meter) bluffs dominate the park’s coastline. Reach the beach below the bluffs via two stairways. Try surf fishing or stroll along the sandy stretch of coast. Lifeguards do not patrol this beach. If you’d like to go swimming or surfing, investigate the safe swimming areas at nearby Ditch Plains Beach, which also has concession stands.
Shadmoor State Park is a large parkland located 2 miles (3 kilometers) east of Montauk. It is a 5-minute drive from the town and has free parking outside the entrance. The park is open daily for free. Be sure to check the permit requirements before going fishing on Shadmoor’s beach.