Spring has finally sprung in New Jersey, and we are lucky to have many natural parks and reservoirs.
Throughout North Jersey, there are many places to ditch our cabin fever and enjoy what spring has to offer. Sometimes, you might not realize that some of the best places are not too far away. After you have finished up with your spring cleaning, check out these places to hike, bike, or go for a leisurely walk.
Hiking & Running
Eagle Rock Reservation Loop – West Orange
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Eagle Rock Reservation Loop is a serene place for a walk or run for West Orange, Verona, and Montcliar residents. Located only two miles away from Crestmont Gardens, it offers rustic woods, along with views of the New York City skyline. The reservation is also home to the Essex County 9/11 Memorial (pictured above).
Ramapo Valley Reservation – Mahwah
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There’s something for everyone at this Bergen County park. Hiking trails at this park range from 0.5 miles to 3.5 miles. There are also some challenging trails available for experienced hikers. This park is considered the starting point of the Ramapo Mountains. Ramapo Valley Reservation is also one of the best spots for geocaching in New Jersey, featuring multiple caches.
Loantaka Brook Reservation – Morristown/Madison Border
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According to the New York – New Jersey Trail Conference, Loantaka is a combination of two Native American words that mean “the place of cold water.” This park features a seven mile path perfect for walkers, joggers, or bicyclists. The northern end features Kitchell Pond, while the southern end features an historic horse barn that was built in 1834.
Kayaking & Fishing
Splitrock Reservoir – Kinnelon
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Get away from it all in northern Morris County. Splitrock reservoir offers 25 parking spots for Kayakers, so make sure you get there early or consider carpooling.
While shoreline fishing is not allowed, Splitrock reservoir is a popular spot for kayak fishing and small boats. It is a well known spot to catch smallmouth and largemouth bass, including catfish, crappie, pickerel, and sunfish. Before you go fishing on your kayak or boat, you will need to register for a freshwater license with the state.
Hackensack River – Bergen County
For those of you who do not have your own kayak, you can rent kayaks from the Laurel Hill Paddling Center in Secaucus from April to October. The Meadowlands offer many spots to kayak within Bergen County for both first timers and experts. If you want to make a lunch stop, River Barge Park & Marina in Carlstadt has picnic benches.
Rahway River – Cranford
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The Cranford Canoe Club is less than a mile from Riverfront at Cranford Station. This is one of the best options in North Jersey for group kayaking or canoe trips. This is also an easier river to paddle down, making it a great river to paddle with first timers.
Are April Showers hampering your outdoor plans? If so, you can still be active by exercising in your apartment!