6.2 out of 10

Pine Plains

41.9784165725816 -73.6575179833448
Great for
  • Safe & Sound
  • Cost of Living
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Clean & Green
Not great for
  • Nightlife
  • Public Transport
  •  
  •  
  •  
Who lives here?
  • Country Lovers
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Tourists
  • Trendy & Stylish

Reviews

3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 4/5
2yrs+

"Excellent outdoor activities"

Pine Plains is located in the north-central part of Dutchess County. It is bordered to the north by Columbia County. There are five hamlets within the town: Bethel, Hammertown, Mount Ross, Pachin Mills, Pine Plains and Pulvers Corners. The town occupies about 31 square miles, with about 2,600 residents.

Students attend the Pine Plains Central School District, which also draws from some of the surrounding areas. There are two elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. There are approximately 1,200 students. At the elementary level, scores on state exams are well below the mean, though Cold Spring Elementary School outperformed Seymour Smith Elementary School. At the high school level, performance on Regents exams was generally strong. The district has to contend with an 18% poverty rate.

Shopping is limited, so residents must travel to neighboring Kingston or Rhinebeck. There is also no direct train service. The closest stop is Wassaic, on Metro-North’s Harlem line, which is a 25 minute drive.

While towns like Beacon and Millerton are great for art lovers, Pine Plains is an excellent choice for outdoors aficionados. There are several parks with facilities for sports, swimming, hiking and boating. The 75-acre Thompson Pond is part of a larger 507 acre preserve. The area was designated a National Natural Landmark, with 387 plant species. It’s an excellent place for hiking and nature study. Thrill seekers will love Stissing Mountain, which is 1,403 feet and part of Stissing Lake Recreation Park. At the top is a 90-foot fire tower, which offers panoramic views to those brave enough to climb the swaying, creaky structure. Visitors can also boat and swim in the park’s lake. A small town recreation department offers a baseball league, and oversees a town beach at Twin Island Lake. Boating and fishing is also possible. Several horse farms have opened in recent years.

Some of the current properties for sale include a few horse farms, with price tags in the millions. House-hunters looking for affordable single-family homes will find a good amount of inventory. It is also possible to buy vacant land.
Pros
  • Stissing Mountain is a cool hiking area
  • Green and pleasant setting
Cons
  • Schools are better in surrounding areas
  • Isolated
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Country Lovers
  • Trendy & Stylish
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 5/5
2yrs+

"Amazing Views of Stissing Mountain in a Cozy Country Town"

Pine Plains, located at the crossroads of Rts. 199 and 82, is a great place to visit as well as live in. As most homes only cost a fair $165,000, the town's cost of living is very reasonable. You get the Pine Plains School District, which has great teachers and is a 6 out of 10 when it comes to schools in the general area.

As part of Dutchess County, you're not far from major cities like Poughkeepsie (which has a metro-north station) or bustling towns like Newburgh with the Stewart International Airport for greater travels. In the immediate area, you'll have the security of safety for raising your family and excellent restaurants for taking the family out for a fun night on the town. Your kids will love the Mountain Cow Cafe with its comfy couches and funky décor, as well as juice bar, and you'll love the excellent coffee they provide, and the staff is always welcoming. There's also the town's favorite, the Stissing House, which offers a clash of Mediterranean and American fusion and fine-dining quisine. For those who like tea instead of coffee, I highly recommend a trip to Shapira's Coffee & Tea Co., where you'll have lots of different types to choose from: anywhere from Assam black teas to smoky Lapsang Souchong.

For Nature Lovers, Pine Plains is a hiker's paradise. You're right near the Harlem Valley Rail Trail, but even better, you're also in the valley of beautiful Stissing Mountain, which has its own Stissing Lake as well, and plenty of trails to choose from. You'll see marshland and woodland on your day hikes, as well as beautiful flora such as lush green fern, Red Cedar, Black Birch or Sugar Maple trees.

Pine Plains is home to famous residents such as singer and songwriter Priscilla Herdman (a personal favorite folk singer of mine) as well as Matt Finley, a popular jazz musician. Pine Plains is also the base camp of the wonderfully creative Tri-Arts Theater. Make sure you get a performance before you leave---and come back soon!
Pros
  • Genuine local businesses
  • Stissing Mountain is a cool hiking area
  • Green and pleasant setting
Cons
  • Kinda sleepy
  • Isolated
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Tourists
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Country Lovers
  • Trendy & Stylish
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
  • Medical Facilities 1/5
  • Schools 4/5
2yrs+

"Cute, isolated town with a mountain to hike"

In far northern Dutchess County, almost near the border with Columbia County, you'll find the small town of Pine Plains.

There may be a few state highways passing through and the Taconic State Parkway's not all that far away, but it's still pretty isolated. There's nothing in the way of civilization within at least several miles of Pine Plains in any direction. As you might then expect, problems here with traffic are pretty light and reasonable.

To say it's clean and green is certainly true, and as visitors can see for themselves on the Pine Plains main page, there are some quaint small-town buildings here that give the village a bit of a charming feel. It's quiet and certainly a peaceful place for someone to raise a family (but if you or your kids are looking for local hangouts, there aren't a ton, or in other words, there's just not much nightlife to be had here at all).

Commuting from here to any city of note probably wouldn't be very easy, especially taking into account the fact that no public transport lines make it here, whether buses or trains. To live in Pine Plains and get to work, one must have access to an automobile (unless you're fortunate enough to have a job in town and relatively close-by). Otherwise, not just for commuting, but also for accessing medical facilities, fitness facilities, shopping malls and variety in restaurants will you need a car to get where you're going. If you're looking for a shopping mall, your best option might be Kingston or even Poughkeepsie, both of which are a fairly long drive from Pine Plains. Because of the lack of public transport and sheer distance, this is probably not a place I'd live if I were commuting to and from, say, New York City, if anyone had the idea.

As mentioned, there is a mountain and its affiliated park located right outside the village called the Stissing Mountain Multiple Use Area. It draws some interest from locals or even tourists looking for a pleasant hike, and it's picturesque as well, so why not. There are other local parks in the area, so I'd rate Pine Plains to be decent to good overall in this category.

There are a lot of things to like about Pine Plains, including its nice area, bucolic scenery, quietness and small-town feel. You are going to be somewhat cut off from society, however, so if you are looking for bigger and better options with regards to shopping, medicine, and more, this area probably won't be for you. Those who appreciate country settings and retirees looking for a modest lifestyle may very well like it here.
Pros
  • Green and pleasant setting
  • Genuine local businesses
  • Stissing Mountain is a cool hiking area
Cons
  • Isolated
  • Kinda sleepy
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Country Lovers
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
2yrs+

"Pine Plains, home to a landmark restaurant and a nice mountain"

Pine Plains is a 31.4 square mile town in Dutchess County, NY although it does directly border Columbia County, NY.

The Stissing House is one of America’s oldest and longest operating restaurants and was once voted as one of THE very best in the Hudson Valley region. Agriturismo is housed in a long yellow building and has a cozy interior with whimsical black and white checkerboard floors where the chef shows off his ever-changing and creative farm to table cuisine. Other area eateries include Lia’s Mountain View Restaurant, Mountain Cow Café, New Chinatown Restaurant, USA Pizza Restaurant and Crumpets. There is also the very cool The Scoop Creamery, a family-friendly ice cream parlor that serves local Ronnybrook brand ice cream.

There isn’t much shopping to speak of in Pine Plains, but there is Pine Plains Pharmacy, Chisolm Gallery, Grassi Copy Shack, Flower Basket, Deuel’s Home Center (a hardware store) and Hammertown Barn which is a cool country store that sells antiques, home furnishings and décor items, kitchen utensils, gardening paraphernalia and gifts. For more extensive shopping options, one can drive to nearby Red Hook where you will find Red Hook Drugstore, Annex Antiques Center, Cider Mill Antiques, East Market Street Antiques, Wiltsie Bridge Country Store, a CVS Pharmacy and a Hannaford supermarket for grocery shopping and a slew of good restaurants.

Also in Red Hook, you will find the Lyceum Six Cinemas and a miniature golf course at Ro-Rin Lanes which is a bowling center with twenty lanes.

Peck’s Market in Pine Plains is a full service grocery store.

The HOPP (Heart of Pine Plains) is a wonderful community center that proudly promotes community well-being and provides engaging activities to all the town’s residents. It has engaging senior activities, a gamer’s club, contests, creative arts events, family sessions to help local area families, a shelter for emergencies and/or inclement weather, a safe teenage hangout, yoga and Zumba sessions, tutoring, digital photography instruction as well as the Brad Pulver Movie Theater. It holds an annual Soup Fest and a town decorating day.

Stissing Mountain is a park with what they call a geologically significant mountain with an elevation of 1,1403 feet. There is a steep hiking trail that leads up to a fire tower with long and magnificent views. Mountain biking and dogs are allowed there, as well. Twin Island Lake is in the center of town. Just west of town is Stissing Lake where you can go swimming. Pine Plains is also home to the Thomas Carvel Country Club.

Local students are a part of the Pine Plains School District which is pretty good.

Pine Plains is pretty safe and the crime rate is low.

The median household income of Pine Plains is around $43,125.

The population of Pine Plains is approximately 2,473.
Pros
  • Genuine local businesses
  • Stissing Mountain is a cool hiking area
Cons
  • Kinda sleepy
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Country Lovers
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Good hiking around an interesting mountain"

Pine Plains has a few things going for it, and these positives nicely offset any negatives, which are mostly due to the size and economic level of the town.

First, I've been hiking in the Stissing Lake Park, and I loved the amazing view from the top of the mountain. It's not an incredibly difficult climb but it's great to get to the top, as outside of the mountain there are very few hills or other mountains, so you can see a really long ways from the top. It's really quite beautiful. I read up on Stissing Mountain a bit, and in the past they used it as a lookout for forest fires, and I can see why they used it. Like The Who sang, I can see for miles!

In addition to the beautiful outdoor scenery, there's a wonder quaint charm to Pine Plains itself. The various establishments all have a really authentic feeling and flavor that sets them above so many similar places. The Stissing House is a great place to get a bite to eat, with a nice selection of very American food, from steaks and duck to burgers and gourmet pizza, and the service is very friendly. Overall I've been impressed. The local pharmacy (I've never had to fulfill a prescription) is very cool as well, and has a small town friendliness that I like. I'm sure if I needed a prescription filled it would be a pleasure getting it here.

Pine Plains is also fairly safe, and the schools are supposed to be good, as I've heard Seymour Smith High School is above average, and I'm pretty sure I've been waited on by some of the students when dining at the Stissing House, and I can attest to their friendliness and professionalism. That, in my opinion, bodes well for the school.

All in all, I would give Pine Plains a very high score. It's a solid small town that can be a bit sleepy or slow at times, but it's not so bad that you will hate it, and there are great options for getting out and hiking some beautiful scenery. Not the best I suppose, but definitely above average.
Pros
  • Stissing Mountain is a cool hiking area
  • Genuine local businesses
Cons
  • Kinda sleepy
  • Veall
Recommended for
  • Retirees
  • Tourists
  • Country Lovers

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