Pick-Your-Own Apple Orchards in Ulster County | Fall in the Hudson Valley
by Dylan Taft
on Tuesday, September 12th, 2017 at 3:07pm.
Come autumn, the Hudson Valley is known for a few distinct things; picturesque foliage and stunning views of mountains draped in red, orange and golden hues, quaint small town hamlets perfect for exploring after hikes and APPLES! Our hills are dotted with these bright red and green delicacies and people travel from near and far to pluck them straight from the trees, at their absolute freshest. As if the sheer number of people traveling to our area, by the busload most weekends, isn't enough indication that the Hudson Valley has some of the best fall produce available, the number of craft cideries opening up and moving to the area is another indicator that it doesn't get any better than apple season in the valley! Angry Orchard, a popular nationwide brand of hard cider, set up shop a few years ago off Albany Post Road in Walden to take advantage of some of the best apple trees for their Innovation Cider House, and Bad Seed Hard Cider also recently opened up a Tap Room in Highland, NY and will soon be expanding and opening a second Tap Room in Brooklyn. People just cant get enough of Hudson Valley apples, no matter their form! If you're looking for things to do in the Hudson Valley this fall, just follow the orchards!
The best way to attain apples is straight from the orchard, direct off the tree! Many Hudson Valley and Ulster County orchards welcome you to do just that- and stay and make a day of it enjoying the farm, offering activities for the kids, yummy food to eat and homemade ciders to taste, locally made jams, preserves and bakery items to take home or pick up as gifts and more. Most U-Pick orchards offer another Hudson Valley farm favorite and autumn food group staple- Apple Cider Donuts; a must try for anyone visiting the area (might we suggest creating your own Apple Cider Donut trail and stopping at multiple stands to find the area’s best?)
Good to note: If you're looking to walk away with bushels of your favorite variety of apple, its best to check farm websites or call ahead to see what variety of apples or other produce is ripe and available for picking, before your farm arrival, and also to see if any special farm events are planned to further your weekend fun!
Don't let fall pass you by without visiting some, or all, of these great U-Pick Orchards around Ulster County!
Roadstand with home grown produce and homemade pressed apple cider and cider donuts and Kettleborough Hard Cider (NOTE: Ice Cream Stand adjacent to farm market now closed for the season, so ice cream and other snacks not available this PYO season)
Lots of fun things to do for kids, including 2 acre corn maze, Big Apple Bounce air pillow, Cow Train and Hayrides, giant slide on sand mountain, farm animal petting area, Rubber Duck Derby, and pony rides (select availability)
Big Apple Cafe with baked goods, cider donuts and other local local products
Farm market featuring all homegrown fruits, vegetables and other produce, pressed apple cider and their own hard cider- Yankee Folly Cidery, as well as bakery items, caramel apples, apple cider donuts, fresh flowers, grass fed beef, milks, cheeses and more.
Pick your own apples, seasonal fruits and vegetables, pumpkins and flowers
Lots of activities for families and large groups, including jumping pillow, petting farm, hayrides, corn maze, Kelder Express & Caboose childrens playground, milking cows (for groups/special events) and even Homegrown Mini-Golf (for parties)
Farm market filled with produce, Kelder’s own grass-fed beef and all natural chicken, eggs, cheese and other local jams, honeys, butters and more.
World’s Largest Garden Gnome, by Guinness Book of World Records stands tall out front for photos.
Farm market with homemade pressed cider, hot apple cider donuts, bakery goods, muffins, pies and other farm grown vegetables and fruits, corn grown from New Paltz’s Wallkill View Farms and Bad Seed Hard Cider (made with Wilklow Orchard apples)
Lots of activities for kids including a hay jump, petting zoo and Greenhouse of Fun, that includes blowup fun houses, tunnels and more.
Large farm market with other homegrown vegetables, fruits, homemade jams, preserves, flower, plants and more
Bakery serving up hot pies, apple cider donuts, bbq lunches and more
While our list above features some of the more popular orchards offering U-Pick services to find fresh fall produce, there are still plenty more great farm markets and farm stands in the Hudson Valley that are open and have the freshest produce available, if you're looking to drop in quick, rather than trek through the orchards to pick yourself. Wallkill View Farms, located just over the bridge in the Village of New Paltz and at the foot of the Shawangunk Ridge, offers plenty of farm grown produce in their expansive market, plus lots of fall flowers, plants and pick your own pumpkins. Bradley Farm, on Springtown Road in New Paltz, also has a large farm market with various vegetables and herbs, naturally raised pork and eggs and much more available, and offers Sunday mountain bike rentals and rides through the farm and along the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail. Saunderskill Farms, located adjacent to Kelder's Farms in Accord, offers delectable baked good and some of the largest and most beautiful mums we've seen, that will turn your yard into an autumn oasis. In neighboring Rhinebeck, of Dutchess County, located across the river from Kingston, Kesicke Farms large farm stand offers even more produce, apple cider donuts, and farm raised beef, pork lamb and chicken in their market. With lots of activities for kids, every autumn weekend at Kesicke there is a Fall Festival, with corn mazes, wagon rides, farm animals to feed and pet, pumpkin picking and more!
There are limitless places to enjoy the best season in the Hudson Valley... what new place will you discover this weekend?