The GUNKS Ridge and Valley Towns Through Time book signing and discussion on October 4

the-gunks-VRTRonald Knapp and Michael Neil O’Donnell have announced the publication of a new illustrated history book titled THE GUNKS Ridge and Valley Towns Through Time.

As those who live locally know, The Shawangunk Mountains (The Gunks) are renowned for stunning landscapes on and off the ridge in a region that has remained a favorite destination for visitors since the middle of the 19th century. In addition to presenting information about the fabled Lake Mohonk and Lake Minnewaska hotels, the book ranges across the ridge from Sam’s Point in Wawarsing to Joppenberg in Rosendale.  It puts a spotlight on the economic and social changes over the past century in the towns of New Paltz, Gardiner and Rosendale in the Wallkill Valley and to a lesser extent on locations in the Rondout Valley.

With some 200 illustrations — most in full color — the book contrasts century-old then images from local archives with specially photographed now images taken by a core of Mohonk Preserve volunteer photographers: Fred Gerty, John Hayes, Maxine Kamin, Glenn Koehler, Susan Koehler, Susan Lehrer and Carol Rietsma, all working under the direction of Michael Neil O’Donnell, whose photographic work is well known in the community.


All proceeds for the sale of the book benefit the Mohonk Preserve — author and photographers receive no royalties.

The book is available in New Paltz at Rock and Snow, Inquiring Minds, Barner Books, Handmade & More and The Treehouse. In Gardiner at the Gardiner Library and at the Mohonk Preserve.  In Marbletown at Mohonk Mountain House.

Knapp and O’Donnell will do a book signing and discussion at Inquiring Minds bookstore in New Paltz on Sunday, October 4 at 2 p.m.

For additional information, visit