Multiple views on this hike, plus you can wander around Skylands Manor and the NJ State Botanical Gardens. We did a 9.5 mile loop starting from Parking Lot A of the Manor:
Crossover (WHITE) to Halifax (RED) to Pierson Ridge (BLUE) to Crossover - past Ilgenstein Rock - Hoerferlin Memorial (YELLOW) - past Erskine Lookout - Old Guard (GREEN LEAF) to right on Ringwood/Ramapo (RED) to Crossover (WHITE)
...make sure you have map #115 of the NYNJTC North Jersey map set so you can follow all that! :)
We picked out our route as we went along (we like to wing it), and ended up going pretty much the opposite route of what Daniela did a couple weeks ago: http://njhiking.ning.com/profiles/blogs/ringwood-state-park-032710Parking:
Rt 287 N to exit 55 to Rt 511. Turn right onto Sloatsburg Rd, there should be signs for Ringwood. Right onto Morris Ave, go straight where there are stone lions on either side of the road and parking lot A will be on your left.
Walking out of the parking lot, turn left to pick up the Crossover (White) trail. If you follow the road around instead, you will shortly come to the visitor center and bathrooms on the left, while the Manor is on your right. Skylands Manor
info is here: www.njbg.org
and there is a map of the grounds you can print out and directions and info. Parking fee is charged from Memorial to Labor day. The Manor is only open for tours one Sunday a month, but you can wander the grounds and the garden.
Formal gardens are not our cup-o-tea normally, as we really prefer trails... but we spent about 20 minutes wandering around taking pics before starting the hike... things were starting to bloom and it's quite pretty and peaceful. There are many paths that run throughout it that we did not check out. Note that they do not allow dogs on the grounds.
The only very slight negative is that the Ringwood-Ramapo (RED) trail must be biking also, and we had to get out of the way for quite a few bikers. The trail in sections also seemed to be quite twisty and geared more for biking than hiking... but that's just our tastes. It wasn't a huge deal.Skylands Manor:
The Botanical Gardens... and the ridge in the distance is one you will be hiking on later:
Zoomed-in view of NYC from Ilgenstein:
Red trail on the way back: