Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Ramapo Valley County Reservation

Ramapo Valley County Reservation - Bergen County Parks

GPS Coordinates 41.077826, -74.187197

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North Jersey Trails Map 115 - New York New Jersey Trail Conference
Ramapo Valley County Reservation Trail Map (free map) - New York New Jersey Trail Conference

HIKE DISTANCE:  7.8 miles

With your back to the road, head towards the kiosk at the far left corner of the lot and take the orange/silver trail.
Cross the bridge over...
... the Ramapo River then turn left following the orange trail.
The orange trail follows along the bank of the Ramapo River before going through a flooded/swampy area.
Crossing on a pile of sticks - it actually worked pretty well.
The trail returns to higher and drier ground and because nobody else had walked on the fresh snow I was able to follow what I am pretty sure are fox prints.
The fox had walked very nicely on the orange trail, across the bridge ...
... and along the ruins before eventually leaving the trail into the woods.
Fox Paw ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Shawnee Paw
The trail ascends along pretty cascades and waterfalls.
Paved road to...
MacMillan Reservoir
Christmas Day snow ...
... on the red Marsh Loop Trail.
It was all pretty much a sloppy muddy mess at the end of the hike but early on the light coating of snow was simply gorgeous.
All but maybe 1 mile of this route had been cleared of blowdowns and those still down were not that hard to navigate around.
Heading to the top of that mountain on the Silver-Yellow Trail.
More ruins off of the trail.
The first time a bridge spans Swamp Brook on a road but later on it is crossed again on rocks.
More fox prints and all the little dots are from snow falling off of the trees - it was like rain for a while.
I am thinking maybe mouse tracks - there were several sets all over this area so apparently the mice has a Christmas gathering.
Finishing the climb up the mountain on the yellow trail.
At the overlook.
New York City skyline in the distant haze.
Continuing on orange/yellow along the ridge.
This was the first and worst  jumble of blowdowns right when the trail starts to descend. 
Log cabin ruins next to a creek.
Rock hop over creek.
Lots of pretty creeks to cross in the woods.
Back at MacMillan Reservoir, it is early afternoon and getting crowded.
The snow had almost all melted heading to Scarlet Oak Pond.
Scarlet Oak Pond

[  0.00]  With back to road, head towards kiosk on the left for the start of the orange and silver trails
[  0.15]  Cross bridge over Ramapo River then turn left on orange when silver continues straight
[  0.60]  Cross bridge where green on white starts, continue on orange towards ruins
[  0.90]  Follow orange as it joins road and crosses old stone bridge when silver goes to the right
[  1.10]  MacMillan Reservoir; continue straight on orange when yellow-silver goes left
[  1.45]  Turn left on red-blazed Marsh Loop
[  1.75]  Red ends, turn right on yellow-silver
[  2.25]  Rock hop creek
[  2.40]  Rock hop creek
[  2.55]  Ruins on left; trail joins paved road and crosses Swamp Brook on bridge, when road veers left, leave road on orange to the right
[  2.70]  Rock hop creek
[  2.80]  Rock hop creek
[  2.90]  At T-intersection turn right on yellow-silver when unmarked goes left
[  3.80]  At intersection with old rusty fire tower ruins, turn right on yellow when yellow-silver goes left towards bridge
[  4.05]  Views were orange joins in from left; continue following combined yellow/orange
[  4.15]  Keep straight on yellow/orange when green starts to the left
[  4.55]  Turn right on orange when yellow continues straight; rock hop creek
[  4.65]  Old log cabin, rock hop creek
[  4.95]  Trail turns right on paved road and crosses bridge, cross another paved road at intersection and continue on orange as it leaves paved road uphill into woods
[  5.65]  Rock hop creek
[  6.10]  Right on orange when red-silver goes left
[  6.25]  Straight on orange when blue starts on the left
[  6.40]  Straight on orange when red starts on the right
[  6.75]  MacMillan Reservoir; continue straight on orange
[  6.95]  Keep straight on silver when orange leaves to the right
[  7.10]  Right on silver when blue starts on the left
[  7.40]  Scarlet Oak Lake
[  7.70]  Orange joins in from the right, cross bridge over Ramapo River
[  7.80]  Back at parking lot


  1. Haven't seen an update in a few weeks. Hope you're OK, I look forward to the weekly reports on your hikes, it gives me some good suggestions for my own hikes.

    1. Ken,
      So nice of you to ask and glad to hear my info is useful to you, thanks! We hiked today so I'll have it posted soon. Shawnee (my dog) had some back pain the weekend after Christmas so we couldn't hike. She went to the chiropractor and seems to be OK now. Then I had car trouble and was almost stranded in PA last weekend heading there for a hike so the hike was aborted and we returned home. Now with a new car we should be back in business!

  2. Glad to hear that things are now OK, looking forward to your posts in 2013. Thanks for the reply and Happy New Year!