Lake Rutherford Loop via Appalachian Trail and Iris...

High Point State Park

Scenic New Jersey Appalachian Trail - View in High Point State Park - Photo Jeremy Apgar Scenic New Jersey Appalachian Trail - View in High Point State Park - Photo Jeremy Apgar

This loop hike ascends to several viewpoints, parallels the shore of scenic Lake Rutherford, and combines a walk on the rugged Appalachian Trail (A.T.) with a stroll along the Iris Trail, which follows a gentle woods road.

41.302684, -74.667402

From the kiosk at the southwest comer of the parking area, follow a blue-blazed trail gently uphill. In 0.2 mile, the blue-blazed trail joins the red-dot-on-white-blazed Iris Trail. Turn right and follow the joint blue/red trail a short distance to a four-way junction, with a four-foot-high drainage pipe on the left. Here, the red-on-white-blazed Iris Trail turns right, and the yellow-on-white...

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Trip Reports

rate experience
January 17, 2019
What a nice hike!
Lake Rutherford was "singing" today. The lake is starting to freeze and with the brisk breeze blowing across the lake, the ice was making sounds sort of like what humpback whales make. (No whale sightings though!). The hike description is spot on and the trail is blazed clearly.
August 31, 2015
Hike description has been updated
I did this hike yesterday and have updated and largely rewritten the description.
Daniel Chazin
November 22, 2012
Change in access point with new parking area
I hiked this trail on November 21, 2012; there is now a blue marked trail from the southwest corner of the parking lot.   Consider changing the first paragraph to read:   From the southwest comer of A.T. parking area, follow a blue marked trail for about 0.25 mile to an intersection with the red-on-white-blazed Iris Trail. Turn right following both trails for about 0.2 miles.    You will reach a trail junction, with a painted drainage pipe to the right rising vertically from the ground to a height of about four feet. The blue trail ends here, and the A.T. crosses the red-on-white-blazed Iris Trail. (The intersection includes the red-on-white-blazed Iris Trail and the yellow-on-white-blazed Mashipacong Trail.) Turn left, or south, on the white-blazed A.T. through the woods, and gradually uphill to the main ridge.   Consider changing the last sentence to read:   After another mile and a half on this woods road, you will arrive at the junction with the blue trail, at which point you should turn right and head back about 0.25 mile to your car at the parking area.
Bob Ross
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