Mansion

Thompson Park (Monmouth County)

Photo

Location


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Park Overview:

An unusually wide variety of activities are available at this park including hiking, birding, cross country sking, crafts, historic visitors center, playground, an off-leash dog area, fishing, athletics and summer theatre.

Trail Uses:Hiking, Mountain biking, Bridle path, X-C skiing, Handicapped
Dogs:See park description
Trail Miles:13.2 miles
Park Acreage:667 acres
City/County/
State:
Lincroft/Monmouth/NJ
Web Map:Trail map and park brochure
Park Description:

This park was established in 1968 with a 215 acre bequest from Geraldine Livingston Thompson (1872-1967), a social welfare reformer and philanthropist,

Trails Overview: Five trails offer over 12 miles of easy hiking with circuits viewing Marlu Lake and the Swimming River Reservoir. Note that the park brochure map is reported not to be entirely accurate and that trails are not always reliably marked.
Directions:

Take the Garden State Parkway South to Exit 109 (Red Bank/Lincroft). Turn left at the end of the ramp onto County Route 520 West and continue for 2.3 miles to the entrance to Thompson Park (the entrance is 0.3 mile beyond the traffic circle at the entrance to Brookdale Community College). Turn left into the park, continue past the first parking lot, and turn left into the Old Orchard parking lot.

Contact Information:Thompson Park
7328424000 x4312
Region:Jersey Shore
Fees:Some times and places; check with park
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Welwyn Preserve County Park

Location


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Park Overview:

Located in Glen Cove on the famous "Gold Coast" of Long Island's North Shore, this lovely piece of land, at one time an estate, now offers a fine example of the tall moist hardwood forests that used to dominate the area.

Trail Uses:Hiking
Dogs:
Trail Miles:
Park Acreage:247 acres
City/County/
State:
Glen Cove/Nassau/NY
Buy Book:Hiking Long Island - Guide Book

Park Description:

What is now Welwyn Preserve once belonged to Harold Irving Pratt, son of oil magnate and philanthropist Charles Pratt of the late 1800s.

Trails Overview:

The Preserve features four blazed trails that are easy to walk.  Approaching from the parking area, the path to the left of the mansion is a direct walk down hill to the beach where one can hike along the shore with views across the Long Island Sound. Trails to the right and back of the mansion are more rugged.  Trail maps are available on site.   

Share your favorite hike(s) with Trail Conference web site visitors. We are especially interested in hikes from The Long Island Region where this park is located. Click for further information and a submission form.  
Directions:

From NYC take the Belt (Cross Island) Parkway to exit 30. From there go east abut 8 miles on the Long Island Expressway (Route 495) to exit 39. Go north on Glen Cove Road 6.2 miles, bearing left at a major fork near the end. Turn north (right) onto Brewster; go 0.5 mile. Turn north (left) onto Dosoris Lane; go 0.7 mile. Go left for 0.4 mile on New Woods Road. At Crescent Beach Road, proceed for about 0.1 mile to the Welwyn gate on the right. Park at the left of the main house.

GPS coordinates to park entrance (approximate):  40.878964,-73.641787

Contact Information:Nassau County Department of Parks, Recreation and Museums
5165720200
Region:Long Island
Fees:
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Mount Defiance/Skylands Manor Loop from Shepherd Lake

Overview

This loop hike climbs to panoramic viewpoints on Mount Defiance and traverses the historic Skylands Manor area.

Details
Time:
3 hours
Difficulty:
Moderate
Length:
5 miles
Route Type:
Circuit
Dogs:
Allowed on leash
Features:
Views, Swimming, Fees, Historic feature
Location
Park:
Region:
County:
Bergen
State:
NJ
Publication
First Published:
01/28/2010
Submitter:
Daniel Chazin

Photo

Skylands Manor view from trail off the Halifax Trail. Photo by Daniel Chazin.

Parking


View Shepherd Lake, Ringwood SP in a larger map

See also
Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Trailhead GPS Coordinates
41.136617,-74.232903
Driving Directions

Take Skyline Drive to its northwestern terminus at Greenwood Lake Turnpike (County Route 511). Turn right, continue for 1.5 miles, and turn right onto Sloatsburg Road. Continue for 2.1 miles and turn right onto Morris Road. In 1.3 miles, just before the entrance to the Skylands section of Ringwood State Park, turn left onto Shepherd Lake Road and proceed for 0.8 mile to Shepherd Lake. Past the entrance booth, bear left and park in the designated parking area (a parking fee is charged from Memorial Day to Labor Day). NOTE: Shepherd Lake is a popular destination on summer weekends, and the parking area can fill up early in the day. (Note: Google map may show this as Sheppard Pond.)

Description

From the parking area, follow the paved path down to the beach on Shepherd Lake. Continue through the boat launch parking area and past the boat house, with the lake to your left.

Merestead

Photo

Merestead
Park Overview:

Merestead was the working farm and estate of Margaret Sloan Patterson, daughter of William Sloane of the W & J Sloane home furnishing store. The mansion is open by reservation.

Trail Uses:Hiking, Bridle path, X-C skiing
Dogs:No dogs
Trail Miles:2.7 miles
Park Acreage:130 acres
City/County/
State:
Mt. Kisco/Westchester/NY
Buy Book:Walkable Westchester - A Walking Guide to Westchester County, NY

Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Park Description:

A visit to Merestead makes it obvious why it could not possibly be called Merestead Park. A 28-room Georgian Revival style brick mansion overlooks a vast expanse of lawn.

Trails Overview:

The trails system includes both woodland hiking trails and farm roads with some views from the farm roads at the top of the hill behind the mansion. 

Directions:

From I-684, take Exit 4 (Route 172) and head west. In 1.5 miles, turn left onto Sarles Street. Continue 1.5 miles to the stop sign at Byram Lake Road. Turn left and drive for 0.4 mile. Parking is across the street from the main driveway.

No public transportation

Contact Information:Merestead
9146664258
Region:Westchester County
Fees:None
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Rockwood Hall at Sleepy Hollow

Overview

This loop hike follows carriage roads around this park, formerly the home of William Rockefeller, with gentle grades and panoramic views over the Hudson River.

Details
Time:
1.5 hours
Difficulty:
Easy
Length:
2.1 miles
Route Type:
Circuit
Dogs:
Allowed on leash
Features:
Views, Historic feature
Location
Park:
Region:
County:
Westchester
State:
NY
Maps/Books
Map:

Rockefeller State Park Preserve map


Buy Book:
Publication
First Published:
03/14/2008
Submitter:
Daniel Chazin

Photo

Parking


View Rockwood Hall in a larger map

See also
Trailhead GPS Coordinates
41.126694,-73.87207
Driving Directions
From US 9 (Broadway) in Tarrytown head north. Follow the entrance road to Phelps Memorial Hospital all the way through the hospital parking lots to a parking area on Rockwood Road. Alternately from Route 9A or the Taconic State Parkway, take the Route 117 exit and head west to Rockwood Road where it ends in a parking area.
Description

Rockwood Hall is the site of the former summer home of William Rockefeller (1841-1922), brother of John D. Rockefeller.

Batona Trail

Location


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Park Overview:

A 50 mile trail that connects three state forests in the heart of the Pinelands.

Trail Uses:Hiking
Dogs:
Trail Miles:49.5 miles
Park Acreage:
City/County/
State:
Hammonton/Atlantic/NJ
Web Map:Batona Trail Brochure
Park Description:

Extending 49.5 miles through the heart of the Pinelands, the Batona Trail [pink] is the longest blazed hiking trail in southern New Jersey.

Trails Overview:

To pierce the genuine wilderness of the area, the Batona Trail avoids the sand roads as much as possible. Still, about 20% of the treadway is soft sand, which makes for slower-than-expected progress in parts of this mostly level trail. Good starting points for the trips on the trail are the Brendan T. Byrne State Forest headquarters and the Batsto Visitor Center. Trail maps and information may be obtained there, as well as at the Atsion Ranger Station and the Bass River Forest Office. A permit is required to camp along the trail in state forests.

 

For more information about the trail, contact Wharton State Forest, Batsto Village, 4110 Nesco Road, Hammonton, NJ  08037 [phone number below].

Share your favorite hike(s) with Trail Conference web site visitors. We are especially interested in hikes from The Pinelands Region where this trail is located. Click for further information and a submission form.

Directions:

The southern terminus of the Batona Trail is near the junction of French Coal Road and Stage Road, near Lake Absegami, in the Bass River State Forest. Its northern terminus is at Ong’s Hat on Magnolia Road in the Brendan T. Byrne State Forest [1.5 miles northwest of Four Mile Circle]. Click on the map tab at the top of this page for directions to these points.

Contact Information:NJ DEP, Division of Parks and Forestry
6095610024
Region:Pinelands
Fees:None

Locust Grove

Location


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Park Overview:

Historic estate, museum, and nature center, Locust Grove overlooks the Hudson River in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. Grounds and trails are open to the public.

Trail Uses:Hiking
Dogs:Dogs on leash
Trail Miles:5 miles
Park Acreage:200 acres
City/County/
State:
Poughkeepsie/Dutchess/NY
Web Map:Estate grounds, trails, parking area
Park Description:

Locust Grove was the home of Samuel Morse, inventor of the commercial telegraph.

Trails Overview:

A five-mile network of relatively short loop trails, constructed originally as carriage roads, wind through fields, woods and gardens around the mansion.  They are named and identified with wooden signs along the pathways.  Some of the trails are steep; many offer Hudson River views.

A web map link is above; printed maps are available at the estate's main entrance.  

Directions:

The Estate is located on the west side of US 9 just south of Poughkeepsie.  Detailed written directions from various locations can be found using web Contact Information  — follow the tabs to “Visiting”/“Directions.”  Address for Google Maps: Locust Grove Estate, 2683 South Road, Poughkeepsie, NY  12601 

GPS coordinates:  41.670765, -73.928251

Contact Information:Locust Grove Estate
8454544500
Region:Dutchess County
Fees:Some times and places; check with park
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Morristown National Historical Park

Park Overview:

Site of the nation’s first national historical park.  Morristown's winter of 1779-80 was the harshest winter encampment endured by General George Washington and the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War.  

Trail Uses:Hiking
Dogs:Dogs on leash
Trail Miles:27 miles
Park Acreage:
City/County/
State:
Morristown/Morris/NJ
Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Park Description:

Jockey Hollow, Fort Nonsense, the New Jersey Brigade, and the Jacob Ford Mansion were of importance during the American Revolution.  Today they are part of the Morristown National Historical P

Trails Overview:

Most of the hiking trails, which follow gentle grades along woods roads, are situated in the Jockey Hollow section of the park.  There are five loop trails, of varying length [1.1 to 5.3 miles] and difficulty, marked with colored blazes.  The hiking-only Patriots' Path [white] connects the Scherman-Hoffman Sanctuaries and Lewis Morris County Park to the Jockey Hollow area.  One access point to the Patriots' Path is at Cross Estate Gardens.

For trail maps follow the "Directions" link on the park's web page [under Contact Information below].

  • The Jockey Hollow Section is free; Washington's Headquarters/Jacob Ford Mansion at Morristown charges an entrance fee

 

Directions:

The Jockey Hollow area is situated near  Exit 30B of I-287; Washington's Headquarters is near Exit 36 of I-287.   For map and written directions use the Contact Information below on the park's web site and follow the "Directions" link

  • Public transportation: Take NJ Transit Morris and Essex rail line from Hoboken or Penn Station in NYC to Morristown.  A taxi can be taken to the Jockey Hollow area; Washington's Headquarters is about a half mile from the train station [see park's web page for walking directions]
  • It is also possible to disembark at Convent Station to walk roughly 2 miles along the Traction Line Recreation Trail to Washington's Headquarters.
Contact Information:Morristown National Historical Park
9087668215
Region:Morris County
Fees:Some times and places; check with park

Ringwood State Park

Photo

Location


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Park Overview:

Ringwood State Park features both wild lands and landscaped gardens. It consists of four distinct areas: Ringwood Manor, Skylands Manor/NJ State Botanical Garden, Shepherd Lake, and Bear Swamp Lake.

Trail Uses:Hiking, Mountain biking, Bridle path, Handicapped
Dogs:Dogs on leash
Trail Miles:50 miles
Park Acreage:4444 acres
City/County/
State:
Ringwood/Passaic/NJ
Buy Trail Map:North Jersey Trails Map
Web Map:NJ State Park Service map
Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Park Description:

Ringwood State Park features both wild lands and landscaped gardens. 

Trails Overview:

There are seven trails, most beginning around Ringwood Manor going on either side of Sloatsburg Road. Individual trails range from 1.0 to 7.3 miles.

  • Advisory: Approximately a 3/4 mile portion of the Hasenclever Iron Trail [yellow blaze] has been closed to the public in the area of Peter's Mine for a number of years. From Ringwood Manor it is approximately 1.5 miles in. There is currently no reroute, please plan accordingly. [February, 2014]

Ringwood Manor:Aside from enjoying the grounds and buildings, the Manor Trail is a relatively easy loop through the woods west of Ringwood Manor [3.0 miles; blue blaze].

  • Advisory:  The bridge over the Ringwood River at the northern trailhead of the Crossover Trail [white blaze] and Ringwood-Ramapo Trail [red on white] has been closed by the Park, as it is structurally unsound. Until a replacement bridge is built, the Crossover and Ringwood-Ramapo Trails heading east towards Skylands Manor cannot be accessed from the upper parking area at Ringwood Manor.

Skylands Manor: With perennials, annual plantings, and unusual plant species the Skylands is a place of beauty in any season. One can stroll amid the elegance of formal gardens, or along gentle paths winding through the woods. Only the Crossover Trail passes through Skylands. The Halifax Trail [green blaze] begins on the far side of the big lawn of the gardens.

Shepherd Lake: An informal trail goes around part of the lake, and the Ringwood-Ramapo Trail [red blaze] passes by the parking lot. A new orange-blazed trail starts at the dock and stays in the area.

Directions:
  • Ringwood Manor - NY 17 just south of Sloatsburg, New York, via Sterling Mine Road (County 72) which becomes Sloatsburg Road when it crosses into to New Jersey, Ringwood Manor is on the right.
  • Skylands Manor & Shepherd Lake - Continue another half-mile south on Sloatsburg Road, turn left onto Morris Road [a large sign will direct you].
  • All three areas have large or multiple parking areas but Shepherd Lake can get crowded on summer weekends
  • Public Transportation: NJ Transit Bus # 197 from Port Authority Bus Terminal. Bus stop is not so near, but a walk to the park is feasible from Skylands Road.
Contact Information:NJ DEP, Division of Parks and Forestry
9739627031
Region:Ramapo Mountains
Fees:Some times and places; check with park
in

Manor Trail from Ringwood Manor

Overview

This loop hike passes a scenic pond and several features of historical interest.

Details
Time:
2 hours
Difficulty:
Easy to Moderate
Length:
3 miles
Route Type:
Circuit
Dogs:
Allowed on leash
Features:
Views, Fees, Historic feature
Location
Park:
Region:
County:
Passaic
State:
NJ
Publication
First Published:
03/07/2002

Updated/Verified:
07/24/2012
Submitter:
Daniel Chazin

Photo

Dam at Sally's Pond. Photo by Daniel Chazin.

Parking


View Untitled in a larger map

See also
Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Trailhead GPS Coordinates
41.139332,-74.253416
Driving Directions

Take Skyline Drive to its northwestern end at Greenwood Lake Turnpike (County Route 511). Turn right and proceed north for 1.5 miles to Sloatsburg Road. Turn right onto Sloatsburg Road and continue for 2.4 miles to the entrance to Ringwood Manor, on the left side of the road. Park in the parking area adjacent to the manor house. A parking fee is charged on weekends from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

Description

From the parking area, follow the footpath that leads along the rear of the manor house. Near the end of house, turn right and climb the stone steps.


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