As I have stated in previous posts, the Old Put Train line, that back in the early and mid 20th century, snaked its way through Westchester County, leaving a trail of steam and then a smell of diesel, has always fascinated me. As many of you know, the County decided to create a park out of the entire railway after it was completely abandoned in 1982, taking what was once train tracks and paving over them with black top for outdoor enthusiasts to run, jump and bike their way through a carved out train path.
Recently, well a few months ago to be exact, I decided to check out the final segment of what was the Put. Yonkers finally finished the final segment of the South County Trail back in 2011 and now, you can literally take the Old Put from the Bronx border, all the way north to Mahopac uninterrupted.
The section that is most recently completed is near Tuckahoe Rd., where the Saw Mill Parkway…the roadway that would eventually ensure the demise of the Old Put, crosses Tuckahoe. You can park in any number of locations near the path, including in the nearby Dunkin Donuts Parking lot, across from the Ramada.
The path is truly a thing of beauty in my opinion and the County did an excellent job of creating something that is sustainable and will be enjoyed for years to come.
First off, the path is now lined with wood fencing, something that I think adds to the history and nostalgia of the path. Also, you can find some beautiful masonry work with stone walls that line other sections as the path ascends up Bryn Mawr Hill toward Palmer Rd.
Also, another cool part about the newest section of the South County Trail is the work that was done underneath Mile Sq. Rd. Having been a teenager who, along with many others used to light firecrackers among other hijinx underneath that bridge in what was a wooded, leaf strewn wasteland, this is pretty impressive.
As you approach Palmer Rd., you really feel as if you are on one of the massive locamotives since you go from being in a completely wooded area, back to civilization, at Bryn Mawr Park Station.
And lastly, one of the coolest finds you can see on the path are some of the old and I think original wooden power lines that used to flank the railway to the east and west.
Sadly, I did see some of this as well in the woods just to the West of the tracks…
Lets hope that the trash stays to a minimum people…who the hell are tossing television sets into the woods anyhow??? Also, there are some new panoramic views of Central Ave. and the area near Roosevelt High School that are now opened up for us all to enjoy!
So all in all, the newest section of the bike path is one of beauty and one that the County should be very proud of. Just think, when the homes that were built in the area 50-75 years ago thought they were putting their houses flush against a major train path, now they are within a stone’s throw from a public park and an ideal way to get some exercise, appreciate the outdoors of Yonkers and reminisce of the great iron horses that rumbled through these very woods decades ago.