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All Blog Posts (324)

Merrill Creek Day Hike

Headed out to Merrill Creek yesterday (6/29/13) for a nice summer dayhike with my girlfriend. I've fished here in the past but never spent any real time exploring other than the boat launch area. It's very similar to Round Valley (RV)  (lake trout population, very deep, built in 20th century as water control). In fact, the reason I chose this hike was based on my Uncle Jim's suggestion during the RV trip. He was struck by their similarities as well. Merrill Creek Reservoir (MCR) is…


Added by TJ Karakowski on June 30, 2013 at 10:30am — No Comments

Return to the Valley

I mentioned in my previous post, that back in 2010 I dabbled with backpacking by hiking into the Valley about 4 miles with 45-50lbs of gear on a cheap pack. And when I hobbled out and was practically bedridden with soreness for a few days afterwards I hid that pack in the basement and didn't even day hike again until 2012.

I returned to Round Valley on Friday (6/21/13) to redeem myself and celebrate the Summer Solstice. I was hoping that a strong will and a Visa bill full of newer…


Added by TJ Karakowski on June 24, 2013 at 11:00pm — 2 Comments

Buttermilk Falls, Crater Lake and Hemlock Pond Loop - 6/15/13

We'd planned on redoing Buttermilk Falls last spring but just never got to it. The last time we hiked the loop was in the Fall of 2009 and the falls were just a bit of a trickle – so we wanted to try to time it in the spring when it runs more or – even better – after a heavy rainfall.

It poured buckets in Jersey for a few days... so off we went.

This route packs in a lot in it's moderate 7.5 miles: Buttermilk Falls (at 200', the highest in NJ), Crater Lake,…


Added by njHiking.com on June 21, 2013 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Point Mountain Reservation – Mountain Top Road - 5/28/13

For general info and trail maps, visit our Point Mountain Reservation page.

As per usual on Memorial Day Weekend, we pointed the car in the opposite direction of crowded beaches and the associated traffic, ending up at Point Mountain Reservation.

We'd hiked here only once before, doing a short hike in the central section almost four years ago ("…


Added by njHiking.com on June 11, 2013 at 5:30pm — No Comments

AT/Garvey Springs Hike with Overnight at Worthington

Headed out on Sat (6/1/13) for my first "serious" backpacking trip (a few years ago I lugged way too much weight 3 miles into Round Valley on an ill-fitting cheap pack and vowed to never do that again!). I've done my homework and bought some better equipment now.


Started at Kittatinny Visitor Center (off Rt 80 in NJ at Water Gap) at 9:15 and was already sweating by the time I hiked under 80 and hit the Dunnfield/AT Trailhead. Spent the first hour sweating and cursing…


Added by TJ Karakowski on June 4, 2013 at 10:30pm — 2 Comments

njHiking.com Site Redesigned - 5/16/13

Have you checked out the redesigned njHiking.com yet?

New look, easier to find info... and just snazzier all around!…


Added by njHiking.com on May 16, 2013 at 2:35pm — No Comments

Stokes Weekend

Spent the Weekend up at a Cabin at Stokes. Great time of year to be there as Spring gets into full gear! Spent Friday (5/3) mainly exploring/shooting through the SW (of 206) section. Hiked to Hidden Falls and Buttermilk. Great to get to Buttermilk on a weekday and have only a few people around (as opposed to the weekend hordes). After that explored more in the DWG park, including Walpack center, and NPS…


Added by TJ Karakowski on May 7, 2013 at 11:00pm — 10 Comments

Four Birds/Split Rock Section

Hit Four Birds Middle/Split Rock Loop yesterday. Did the 6 mile In and back version, first hike since last summer. Not a particularly inspiring hike, good views of lake disappear after the first half mile (might return past 3 mile point but wouldn't know), with 2-3 swampy/buggy areas passed through. Bugs were very bad yesterday, not sure if they're mayflies or what, but am covered in itchy bites today (and sore!). HOpe to be more active on site this summer

POST EDIT 5/1. The…


Added by TJ Karakowski on April 29, 2013 at 9:00am — No Comments

Tamarack Hollow Preserve - 04/14/13

The trails at Tamarack Hollow Preserve are relatively new and I'd read about their creation a few years ago. Since there are only a little over 2 miles of marked trails here, we'd just never gotten around to checking them out.

There are three blazed trails: Fresh Ponds Spur (.3), Hidden Holly (.6), and Tamarack (1.0). There are some other unmarked…


Added by njHiking.com on April 15, 2013 at 4:15pm — No Comments

Plainsboro Preserve - 4/7/13

Plainsboro Preserve Spring is finally here it seems - and what a gorgeous weekend to get outside. We continued our exploration of parks under an hour away. This weekend we ended up at Plainsboro Preserve.

This small park contains about 5 miles of easy trails that are a mix of gravel trail and forested trails, with Lake McCormack in the center. Be sure to stop into the New Jersey Audubon nature center to check out the turtles, snakes, frogs etc.

This park is mostly a…


Added by njHiking.com on April 8, 2013 at 2:03pm — No Comments

Sourlands Mountain Preserve, Ecosystem Preserve and D&R Greenway - 3/17/13

We continued our exploration of central Jersey parks under an hour away from us by hitting up the Sourlands Mountain Preserve, Ecosystem Preserve (formerly called North Stony Brook) and the D&R Greenway, located in East Amwell and Hopewell Townships.

Across from the parking area for Sourlands Mountain Preserve is the…


Added by njHiking.com on March 19, 2013 at 2:02pm — No Comments

Ireland Brook Conservation Area - 3/10/13

The Ireland Brook Conservation Area is small park in Middlesex County with a few short, easy trails near Ireland Brook in East Brunswick.

We'd been saving checking this one out for a day when we needed a quick, somewhat close-by hike.

The trails are short but it looked possible to piece them together into a longer route. So when we've had…


Added by njHiking.com on March 12, 2013 at 4:43pm — No Comments

Cheesequake State Park – Yellow, Red, Green - 2/18/13

Headed over to Cheesequake for a quick President's Day hike. It was quite windy at first so it was COLD, but about half-way through we started warming up enough to be removing gloves.

We go to this park a lot and tend to always go the same direction, so this time we did some trails in reverse to get a different perspective, ending…


Added by njHiking.com on February 20, 2013 at 8:31pm — No Comments

Sourland Mountain – Ridge & Roaring Brook Trails - 1/19/13

While poking around on our site a few weeks ago, I realized not only had we not been to Sourland for several years (see "Sourland Mountain Preserve – Ridge Trail"), the trail map…


Added by njHiking.com on January 24, 2013 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Cheesequake S.P. – Green and Yellow Trails - 1/5/13

cheesequake-green-trail We had limited time this weekend and only could manage a quick hike at our go-to park for that, Cheesequake State PArk.

While there, we figured we may as well collect new GPS data on the change to the GREEN trail, and also the small reroute around the damaged boardwalk in the cedar swamp.

The GREEN is now a tad longer at around 3.3. The main reroute is around the Atlantic cedar swamp section. The other main new area is a reroute around a section that…


Added by njHiking.com on January 8, 2013 at 4:44pm — 4 Comments

Wharton State Forest - Atsion - 1/1/13


We always try to hike on New Year's Day as it's just a great way to start the year (and shake off the wine & cheese from the night before!)

For New Years we wanted a hike that we were familiar with so it didn't require any research, and our last hike here was less than a year ago [see Wharton State Forest – Atsion to Quaker Bridge…


Added by njHiking.com on January 5, 2013 at 8:00pm — 3 Comments

New Year's Snowshoe Weekend At High Point, NJ

New Year's Eve day some were preparing to watch the ball drop in Times Square.  But we were preparing to snowshoe while watching some snowflakes drop at High Point.  It didn't snow that day, but it did on New Year's Day.  Shoeing in the snow (unless we're talking blizzard conditions) always enhances the experience for us.  Then again...a bright, winter-blue sky sunny day is nothing to shake a snowshoe at. :)

Arrived at the High Point X-Country Nordic Center around 9:00am on Monday.…


Added by Linda Frank on January 4, 2013 at 11:30am — 2 Comments

Plantar Fasciitis,New hiker.Very upset

First like to say hello to everyone out there who enjoys the same things I do.Im a mountain biker road biker,kayaker who now enjoys hiking now also.Ok lets start out hiked four times so far and now have been striken with what seems to be the signs of plantar fasciitis in my left heel.Burning heel morning pain blah blah blah. What has me upset is did I over do it first times out?Have I caused this injury that can be with me forever and just…


Added by Scott Bower on January 3, 2013 at 9:50pm — 9 Comments

Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Reserve - 12/23/12

Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed was never really on our radar to do, but when the Watershed contacted us to put up their trail map onto njHiking.com we saw that there was a longer trail, the Watershed Trail, that linked the two smaller sections. Now we could likely get a solid 8+ miles in.

Most of…


Added by njHiking.com on December 28, 2012 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Celebrate the New Year with “First Day Hikes”

A hike is a great way to kick off the New Year. There is nothing like fresh air and an invigorating hike on the first day of the year.

The New Jersey State Park Service is holding First Day Hikes across the state on January 1, 2013, in…


Added by njHiking.com on December 26, 2012 at 2:05pm — No Comments

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