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Franklin Parker Preserve
There are two main entrances to the preserve: the Chatsworth Lake entrance off Route 532 and the Speedwell entrance off Route 563. Use Contact Information on this site for links to detailed directions.
A 16-square-mile preserve, situated near five other major parks in the Pine Barrens, is a significant ecological treasure, with beautiful wetlands and several loop trails.
The Preserve has four blazed trails, each of them forming loops ranging from three to nearly seven miles. Blue-blazed connecting trails, under a half-mile each, make short-cuts possible. The trails are multi-use with pathways consisting of sand roads, save for the Red Trail’s narrower footpath and a similar segment of the Yellow Trail (identified on the trail map). Accessible from the Chatsworth Lake entrance, both the Green Trail and Red Trail (co-aligned in places) loop around the DeMarco Cranberry Meadows Natural Area. Climbing an observation tower along the way provides unobstructed views. The White Trail loops around Bald Eagle Reservoir and passes by yet another observation tower.
Use the Web Map link on this site to view a trail map. Click to view a detailed description of a hike in the preserve.
Click for detailed hike descriptions, scroll down to the name of this park.
On the site of a former cranberry farm, and in the heart of the New Jersey Pine Barrens, the Franklin Parker Preserve contains approximately 5,000 acres of wetlands habitat and 4,400 acres of contiguous upland pine oak forest. The Preserve is crossed by 14 pristine tributaries of the West Bank of the Wading River; be prepared to encounter some soggy trail sections and somewhat challenging water crossings here and there.
It is adjacent to approximately 250,000 acres of five state-owned properties: Brendan Byrne State Forest, Wharton State Forest, Bass River State Forest, Greenwood Wildlife Management Area and Penn State Forest. For more information about these parks go to the "Choose another experience" Finder on this site.