Haunted Road Trip – Upstate New York

by | Oct 23, 2017 | Escapades, Renter Stories

‘Tis the season for crunching leaves, pumpkin-spiced everything, Stranger Things, and haunted campervan trips! Our friend Zaq grabbed a van (named Tecumseh) and some travel buddies and meandered north from New Jersey, hitting all the spooky stops he could fit into a weekend trip.

Stop 1: Rockland State Psychiatric Hospital

From our New York Escape Depot, it’s about 1.5 hours to Tallman Mountain State Park near Sparkill, which is a great area to camp if you’re leaving after work. Get dinner at the Tallman Grill by NoCo, and hang out at the Tallman Beach and Pool Club–just keep in mind it closes at 10 pm. The next morning, get breakfast at the Orangetown Classic Diner before heading into Rockland State Psychiatric Hospital in Orangeburg.

The lowdown from Zaq:

“There really is nothing like visiting an old mental hospital to remind you to feel grateful for, you know, not getting lobotomized or whatever. Rockland was once one of the largest mental asylums in New York, but the patients and staff now take up only a tiny portion of the campus, which spans over 600 acres. If you wander through the warrens of crumbling buildings, you’ll find rooms at varying levels of creepiness, from an abandoned bowling alley (3/10 scare points) to mouldering children’s wards (12/10 — the eyeless stuffed toys are totally going to come to life any second and get stabby, get me out of here, thx).”

Stop 2: Letchworth Village

From Rockland, it’s 20 minutes to Letchworth Village.

The lowdown from Zaq:

“Letchworth was originally intended as a kinder variant on the mental asylum, but any place intended to segregate “the epileptic and feeble-minded” from the general population is going to be… um, suspect — and the practices that went down here make Nurse Ratched look like Mary Poppins. Children suffered from forced medical testing, and there were many allegations of abuse. The buildings shuttered in the mid-’90s, and today, the sprawling grounds are ripe for exploration. In case you need additional nightmare fodder, there’s an attendant cemetery full of unmarked graves.”

Stop 3: The Pines Hotel – South Fallsburg

An hour up the highway from Letchworth, you’ll find The Pines Hotel in South Fallsburg.

The lowdown from Zaq:

This massive Catskills ski resort once offered 400 rooms, an ice-skating rink, an indoor pool, and about a bajillion other amenities. Several of these have now been demolished, but large chunks of the buildings still stand, where you can scope out remains of peeling vintage wallpaper and old-school chandeliers.

Stop 4: Grossinger’s Resort, Liberty

The last stop on our tour is a quick 15-minute trip from The Pines Hotel.

The lowdown from Zaq:

“If you’ve ever wanted to attend a Dirty Dancing-style Catskills resort populated by raccoons instead of a pre-nose job Jennifer Grey, then this is your chance. This abandoned resort is now carpeted in moss and the Olympic-sized swimming pools grow ferns.”

More Stops!

Can’t get enough? Here are a few more points of interest you can see along this route.

Gallery:

Do you have any more stops to add to the list? We want to hear about them! Contact us.

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