Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Chimney Rock Park and Washington Valley Park, NJ

Chimney Rock Park - Bridgewater Township, NJ
Washington Valley Park - Somerset County Parks
Washington Valley Park - JORBA

GPS Coordinates for Chimney Rock Park 40.594427, -74.560607

View Larger Map
Based on the trail map, I parked near the entrance and walked around to the right of the ball fields.  A better way would be to park at the far end and walk along the left side of the ball fields, then turn right for a few steps, then left at the bleachers to the trail into the woods.

Washington Valley Park Map - Somerset County Parks
Chimney Rock Map - MTBNJ  
Chimney Rock Park and Washington Valley Park, NJ at EveryTrail

I did some backtracking thinking two different trails were overgrown and not passable.  When approaching from the other side, overgrown sections were short and all of the trails can be used.

Chimney Rock Park Ball Fields
Trail into the woods behind the bleachers at the back of the ball fields near the far end.
Unmarked trail from ball fields.
Planet information signs along the trails.
East Branch Middle Brook
Rock hop over side stream to East Branch Middle Brook just before Gilbride Road,
Just before the guardrail and bridge, the trail to the right is the orange trail but there are no markers until on the trail.
East Branch Middle Brook from the Gilbride Street bridge.
A short distance after crossing the bridge, the trail to the right is the yellow trail but again no markers until on the trail.
Square markers are perimeter trails.
Round markers are interior trails.
Turn right and roceed through the Miller Lane Parking lot when the trail comes out on pavement.  No markers in this area.
Continue through the gate on the paved path.
Combined yellow square/yellow circle on the paved path.
Hawk Watch
View to the left.
Most of the view is the quarry.  It might be quiet on weekends but during the week it's LOUD and STINKY!  The noise and smell does stop after Buttermilk Falls,
Chopping away at Earth
Chimney Rock
Again no markers at the intersection but the yellow square/yellow circle trail leaves the pavement to the left after circling around from Hawk Watch.
Buttermilk Falls at the East Branch Reservoir.
I did not know it until I was on the orange trail on the other side but this can be crossed to connect with orange.  But doing so would cut out one of the prettiest parts of the hike.
Yellow square continues along the reservoir.
The trail becomes quite rugged.
Looking back at the East Branch Reservoir.
On the orange square trail.
On the other side of East Branch Middle Brook.
The other side of the rock hop over East Branch Middle Brook.
Returning to Gilbride Road on the orange trail.  Turn left ...
... then right just after the guardrail in the unmarked trail back to Chimney Rock Park.


  1. Love your blog. You have so many great hikes in New Jersey. My Border Collie Mix and I love exploring all the new ones that you post. Thanks so much for all the useful information!

    1. Thanks, Bethany! So glad my info is of use to you and your dog. Appreciate the feedback.


  2. I am planning to hike here with a small group next weekend (June 14th '14) and your post provides all the info. Awesome write-up and pictures. Thank you!


  3. Thank you so much for this post! I am going to visit Washington Valley and your post helped me to plan my trip.

    Thanks and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    1. Great! I think this is the better section of the park. I hiked the western section yesterday but it is not as remote feeling.

      Happy New Year!