We made our way to Paterson, NJ past Medieval Times and the new insane super mall Xanadu (it has a ski slope on it) to take a tour of Lambert Castle. Unfortunately, we were an hour too early for the lady with donuts on her face to start conducting tours (fyi – hours are 1-4 even though the website says noon) so we decided to stroll the grounds instead.
Behind the castle, which now stands next to a sheriff station is a steep hill leading to an imposing tower above. We headed up the step terrain, that, with the right shoes would have been fine, but my flat boots with no traction made it rather treacherous. Any panic along the trail was worth it, as the tower is an impressive building, reminiscent of the kind of buildings princesses would be trapped in and grounds you could imagine the dead rising from in creepier weather and time of day.
Originally built as an observation tower, the interior was open to the public through the 1960s. There was even a snack stand for the revelers. Today, while the main building is refurbished, the tower looks a bit rough and was a spot for couples making out when we were there and tagging, pot smoking kids after hours.
There are paths leading off from the tower, but (again the shoes) I wasn't able to take advantage of them. Maybe if we come back for a mansion tour, we can also explore them. The surrounding land is called the Garrett Mountain Reservation and seemed to offer lots of picnic areas and walking paths.