Site #20 Hudson River Skywalk


The panoramic view of the Hudson River looking north, east and south from his original property in Catskill captivated the 19th century artist Thomas Cole. Today, the Hudson River Skywalk features viewing platforms along the Rip Van Winkle Bridge that offer sweeping views of the very same landscape that inspired Cole to found America’s first major art movement, the Hudson River School of landscape painting. This magnificent landscape, remarkably unchanged in many ways, is depicted in Cole’s drawing Long Dock or Catskill Landing on the Hudson River, and his painting study Reflections. The Skywalk pedestrian walkway connects Cole’s historic home in Catskill with the home of his student and fellow Hudson River School artist, Frederic Church, across the river. Church, who went on to become one of the most successful artists of his day, painted his beloved home, Olana, from this vantage point in Olana in the Clouds. The views, shorelines and horizons depicted in the paintings are still visible, a testament to the conservation work of numerous state agencies, concerned citizens, and non-profit groups..

This site was prepared for New York State Water Resources Institute and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Hudson River Estuary Program, with support from the NYS Environmental Protection Fund.

Plan Your Trip

Visit their Website


Free, as available on side streets


Accessible with Assistance 
Meets some ADA standards and has some barriers. Many visitors with disabilities will require assistance

Open all seasons 
Dawn to dusk


Map & Directions

Driving Directions: We recommend Google Map . Site coordinates: 42.224528 Lat., -73.854861 Long.

Photography / Painting Credits

Frederic Edwin Church. Olana in the Clouds. Oil on paper, 1872, 8 11/16 in x 12 1/8 in. New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

Thomas Cole. Long Dock or Catskill Landing on the Hudson River. Ink and pencil on paper, 1847, 6 3/8 in x 10 1/2 in. Albany Institute of History & Art, Descended in family of Thomas Cole to Florence Cole Vincent, by purchase to the Albany Institute of History & Art.

Thomas Charles Farrer. A Buckwheat Field on Thomas Cole's Farm. Oil on paper, 1863, 11 3/4 in x 25 1/4 in. Gift of Maxim Karolik for the M. and M. Karolik Collection of American Paintings, 62.265.

Thomas Cole. Reflection. Oil on canvas. Richard Sharp.