Tag Archives: Essex County
Though today is the official first day of Spring, Spring jumped the gun on us for a few weeks. If for some reason you haven’t gotten outside on the trail or walking around a local park, don’t waste much more time — you may miss it.
On Saturday I put in 10 miles on the trails of South Mountain Reservation and saw many signs of Spring — early wildflowers like Lavender or the invasive Lesser Celandine, many chirping birds, and trees pushing out new leaves. Continue reading
This past Saturday I spent the day in South Mountain Reservation wandering around the 2nd Annual Mayapple Festival. The day featured 3 separate guided hikes through the park, organized around a festival area at Summit Field that included an art show, live music, an educational booth run by the Essex County Environmental Center, and some other informational booths. All in all, a fun day for people of all ages, and some great weather. Hike 1: Summit Field to Washington Rock The morning started with a early hike out to Washington Rock and the overlook to the south at the Watchungs. The walk wandered a bit covering some unofficial trails and … Continue reading
There are two big events this weekend that should get the attention of both the walking crowd and those speedier trail runners. Saturday, May 21st in the middle of the state is the return of the NJ2NY50—a 50 mile, one day, walk from Metropark to New York City celebrating the East Coast Greenway. In Essex County, there is also the 2nd Annual Mayapple Festival in South Mountain Reservation, featuring much shorter walks around the park trails, but also an ultra-marathon in distances from 100k to a shorter 10mile trail race. NJ2NY50 The NJ2NY50 is a 50 mile walk along the East Coast Greenway and Liberty Water Gap Trails from NJ … Continue reading
On Columbus Day, October 11, 2010 I had the pleasure (and minor pain) of hiking 33 miles of the Lenape Trail with a great group of people for an event organized by the Freewalkers. Starting from the southern tip of South Mountain Reservation in Millburn, the day long hike covered several suburban parks and hiking trails in Essex County connected by this branch of the yellow blazed Lenape Trail. It was a great day of walking, exploring the Essex County Parks system, and getting to know a bunch of new friends and fellow hikers. I thought the trail was great and was really quite surprised that the route consisted of … Continue reading
If you’re not attending The Big Walk on Saturday May 22 or looking for something a bit more low key or family friendly there’s the first annual South Mountain Reservation Mayapple Festival. Sponsored by the South Mountain Conservancy and the Essex County Parks Department this one day event is at South Mountain Reservation in New Jersey (Hike NJ SMR Park Info Page) the festival has something for everyone — from an ultra-marathon to walks through the new wildflower preserve to an ultimate frisbee game. Most activities will take place or originate in the Summit Field area located off of South Orange Ave. (Map). The following info was taken from SOMOCON’s … Continue reading
It was such a nice Spring day on Friday that I had to leave the confines of my desk and spet a few moments in the sun. After lunch I walked a short loop in South Mountain Reservation entering from the Locust Grove parking area with the intention on checking into what wildflowers were appearing. Here’s what I spotted. What signs of Spring have you seen on the trail? Lesser celadine This waxy yellow flower can be seen in many spots in the valley near the water, runoff or muddy areas. The above photo was taken right off the parking area. Wikipedia entry for Lesser celadine. Yellow Trout-Lily Trout lilies … Continue reading
As has become routine in the last couple of years Essex County will be holding a closed deer hunt to combat overpopulation at three local parks. On select Tuesdays and Thursdays through January and February parks and trails will be closed to the public. Below is a schedule sent out recently to residents of area towns: It’s important to stay safe and be aware of various hunting seasons and activities before going hiking or backpacking. NJ hunting schedules and regulations can be found at the NJ Division of Fish & Wildlife web site and the NY-NJ Trail Conference often posts hunting location and hunting season notices.
With this new site I’m hoping to post regular trip reports from hikes around the state of New Jersey to supplement the guide pages and give you an idea what to expect when heading out to your local park. Here’s the first of what I hope are many. With the fall foliage at near peak in Essex County and rainstorms moving through Friday and Saturday I spent Sunday afternoon with a couple of photographer friends and wandering around the waterfalls in South Mountain Reservation. Autumn colors seemed to be near peak, so if you’ve got the urge to go out and see the bright reds, yellows and oranges the northeast … Continue reading