Dover Stone Church Preserve

Dover Stone Church Preserve

Dover Stone Church. Photo by Justin P. Goodhart Photography. Dover Stone Church. Photo by Justin P. Goodhart Photography.
41.739125, -73.586799

Main feature: a short, moderate walk leads to a scenic brook and a dramatic natural cavern—the "Dover Stone Church" —through which water flows out and sunlight filters in.  

This is a small-town preserve, which began in 2004 by offering a single short hike (about 1.2 miles round-trip from parking area). The scenic brook and cavern at the end of the trail make the Dover Stone Church — an extraordinary cave-like natural formation — a worthwhile destination.  Inside the cavern is a 30-foot waterfall cascading into a pool of water that flows through and then out of...

Park Acreage:

170.00 acres


Dover Plains

Read full description

Contact Information

Web Link:

Town of Dover


(845) 832-6111


Not available

Dogs in park:

Dogs on leash

Prepare For Your Destination

Let's Go

Trip Reports

rate experience
January 22, 2018
Floating Pineapples and Canyoneering

The Dover Stone Church is one of the more interesting geological features in the Hudson Valley. It's a really short hike to the cave, but it's definitely worth the visit. I usually coordinate this with a trip to the Trevor Zoo and make a day out of it.

The first section of the hike is down a treelined path. The trees are still small, but someday this section of the trail should be shaded by some giant trees. This section leads to the creek that runs along the trail and up to a wooden bridge. Most people skip past this little field, but there is a nice pond here and some trails that most people skip. I'm not sure if these trails lead along the top of the gorge, but you used to be able to walk along it and up past the cave to some nice views of the water coming down the slopes above the Church.

The main attraction here is the Stone Church itself. There is a stone path that follows the creek to the cave with some nice cascades and rocks to sit on. At the entrance to the cave I once found a pineapple (Don't ask me how it got there). It was stuck underwater, but through some sly maneuvering, I managed to get it out. Apparently submerging pineapple makes them incredibly squishy and rotten, so it exploded in my hand and floated its way down the creek. It then became my mission in life to return this majestic pineapple to the sea. Sadly it only made it to the wooden bridge before sinking to the bottom, resting in the murky depths, never to be seen again.

Beside pineapples, the cave is filled with rocks that you can walk across to get deeper in the Church. In the winter, the walls will freeze over with icicles and gives it a completely different look. The Stone Church isn't huge (It's more of a Stone Studio) but it is extremely picturesque and a great spot for a short hike. It does get crowded here in the Summer, but if you go during the week or in the Winter, you can usually avoid people.

May 14, 2016
Gorgeous spot
I have visited this place numerous times. It is one of the most scenic spots around. The new trails are alright, but the money spot is the "Stone Church." I visited today hoping to get there before the rains fell and was rewarded with amazing beauty.  If you would like to see images of this short easy hike with a big payoff, visit:
Log in or register to post comments