Know the New Hiking How-tos
Pochuck Boardwalk Section of Appalachian Trail
The 1.5-mile Pochuck Boardwalk and its 110-foot long wooden suspension bridge elevate this section of the Appalachian Trail over what was once a prehistoric lake between the Pochuck and Wawayanda Mountains in northern New Jersey.
Canal Road (South) lot: 41.226677, -74.468951
Parking for up to 15 cars is available at this small dirt lot. The middle of Canal Road is closed to traffic, so approach Canal Road from the south via Maple Grange Road.
Canal Road (North)/Bucky Lane lot: 41.231688, -74.462125
Parking for up to 10 cars is available at this small dirt lot. The middle of Canal Road is closed to traffic, so approach Canal Road/Bucky Lane from the north via Prices Switch Road.
Route 94 lot: 41.219347, -74.455087
Parking for 20 cars is available at this small dirt lot and associated wide shoulder of Route 94.
Route 517 shoulder: 41.235761, -74.480470
Parking is very limited along the shoulder, with parking allowed only where indicated by signs; vehicles may be ticketed if parked anywhere else along Route 517 or nearby side streets.
The 1.5-mile Pochuck Boardwalk and its 110-foot long wooden suspension bridge elevates this section of the Appalachian Trail over what was once a prehistoric lake between the Pochuck and Wawayanda Mountains near Vernon, New Jersey.
This beautiful walk is full of native cattails, plumed grasses, wildflowers, hemlock, firs, and five species of oak. The National Park Service has designated the low-lying floodplain next to Pochuck Creek one of the most valued wetlands in the country.
The boardwalk puts you on a unique sliver of the historic Appalachian Trail as it crosses northern New Jersey. It draws everyone from locals enjoying a casual walk to the most determined thru-hikers who call the Appalachian Trail home for as long as it takes to hike from Georgia to Maine.
The Pochuck Boardwalk was constructed in 1995 by volunteers under the direction of the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.
Know Before You Go
- Parking is very limited, especially near the access from Route 517; be aware that vehicles parked outside of proper parking areas may be ticketed along Route 517 or nearby side streets.
- Due to extensive over-use at this site, it is recommended to first try parking at Canal Road or Route 94 and hiking west to the boardwalk. In addition to avoiding the most severe parking issues, this will afford you a longer and more scenic hike.
- If you plan on hiking at peak times (weekends during pleasant weather), consider a different hike and returning to the Pochuck Boardwalk when it will be less crowded.
- Remain on the boardwalk to avoid disrupting the delicate wetland ecosystem that hundreds of plants and animals rely on.
- Dogs are allowed but must remain on-leash.
Pochuck Boardwalk sees heavy use, especially on weekends and after work hours in warm weather. If you plan on hiking during these peak times, we encourage you to explore other local options. The Trails of Vernon Challenge web page has an excellent list of nearby hikes, maps, and more.