What is New York State’s Most Rural County?
You probably have seen the memes of what people outside of the state think when you say you're from New York. Certainly, not all of the state is the skyline of Manhattan. But there are some who still have gotten the memo, apparently. But have you thought about really getting away from it all?
Many people still associate all of the state with just the city, not considering what the rest of the landscape actually looks like. But you may forget just how big the state actually is.
How Big is New York State?
The state of New York is 54,555 square miles, making it the 27th biggest state in the country. It's not in the same league as Alaska, Texas, or California, but it's still going to take you quite a while to drive from one side to the other. And while many of the state's residents live in urban areas, the majority of the actual land is farms, rolling hills, mountains, valleys, and forests.
So, what NY county is 100% completely rural?
According to a recent study, there is only one. if you're looking to get away from it all, then you might want to go here. Is it near the Hudson Valley?
If You Want To Really Get Away, Go To This Place
Stacker recently measured all of New York's 62 counties using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. According to the numbers, there is one county outside the Hudson Valley that is completely rural, with no urban areas. it also happens to be the largest county by area in the state.
Hamilton County has no urban areas at all, according to the Census data. Stacker says it has a population density of 2.6 people / square mile, with a total of only 4,454 residents. According to Wikipedia, Hamilton is roughly the size of the state of Delaware but is the country's least populated county east of the Mississippi River.
Hamilton is one of only two counties (Essex being the other) that lie entirely within the Adirondack Park. Yes, it was named after Alexander Hamilton.
Hudson Valley/Catskill Counties in the State's Top 50
- 4) Delaware County: Rural area: 99.6%
- 16) Greene County: Rural area: 98.7%
- 18) Sullivan County: Rural area: 98.5%
- 20) Columbia County: Rural area: 98.2%
- 40) Ulster County: Rural area: 92.6%
- 46) Dutchess County: Rural area: 78.0%
- 47) Orange County: Rural area: 77.3%
Let's Get High
New York state is known for its abundance of diverse natural beauty. When it comes to mountains, the Empire State certainly has some of the best peaks and ranges in the eastern part of the United States.
Three major mountain ranges span the state; the Adirondacks, the Catskills, and also a portion of the Appalachian Mountains. This offers many locations for a variety of outdoor activities. Though if you're looking for the state's highest peaks, it can be a daunting journey. Where to start?
So, what is the highest peak in all of New York state?
Mount Marcy (elevation 5,344 feet)
Mount Marcy is the highest peak in all of New York state at 5,344 feet. The mountain is located in the Adirondack High Peaks in Essex County, near the town of Keane, NY. Lake Tear of the Clouds is often cited as the highest source of the Hudson River. The peak was named after former New York Governor William L. Marcy.
Many trails are rough to travel and can be quite steep and challenging. Snow covers the mountain from October until as late as May. Some even say its weather can be almost as windy and severe as Mount Washington in New Hampshire. This unlucky group had to be rescued by rangers last Thanksgiving. Still, tens of thousands of visitors still flock to the mountain during the summer months.
The Area's Historical Significance
Vice President Theodore Roosevelt was hiking Mount Marcy in 1901 when he learned that President William McKinley's health was deteriorating, after being shot a week earlier. He would later take a stagecoach to North Creek, where there was a train station. At some point on the way, he learned that the President had died. Quite the historical moment.
If you travel to Mount Marcy, you're going to want to know what you're doing and come prepared. Follow the trails and instructions, and dress accordingly. Also, be mindful of many of the rangers and nature wardens in the area, who are there to protect the landscape and vegetation. Years of human intervention have caused much damage to parts of the ecosystem of the mountain.