Sunday, June 1, 2014

Long Pond Ironworks State Park, NJ - Big Beech Mountain and Jennings Hollow

Long Pond Ironworks State Park - NJ Department of Environmental Protection
Long Pond Ironworks - Friends of Long Pond Ironworks
Tranquility Ridge County Park - Passaic County, NJ

GPS Coordinates 41.145368, -74.297161

View Larger Map
Room for a few cars on the left before the gate.

Big Beach Mountain - New Jersey 1K Club
Big Beach Mountain - Peakery

North Jersey Trails Map 115 - New York New Jersey Trail Conference
Long Pond Ironworks State Park, NJ - Big Beech Mountain and Jennings Hollow at EveryTrail

HIKE DISTANCE:  7.6 miles

Start on the green Monks Connector Trail at the gate.
Cross over a couple of ugly pipes.
At first it is an overgrown field ...
... then a woods road.
At information sign #5 ...
... a 200-year-old tree.
When green ends, turn right on the yellow Hansenclever Trail.
At information sign #6 turn left on the woods road to Patterson Mine.
Unmarked woods road to Patterson Mine.
Creek crossing along the way.
Patterson Mine
Second water-filled mine shaft near the first.
Mine tailings.
Looks like a railroad track near the mine?
The woods road ends at the Highlands/Sterling Ridge Trail.
It gets swampy in places ...
... then a few scrambles up.
Views to the east at the top.
A little farther along the trail, partial views to the west.
Some partial views along the way a short bushwhack to the right.
Easy going along the ridge.
The cairn at the summit of Big Beech Mountain, a little to the left off of the trail.
We added a rock to the cairn.
On the summit of Big Beech Mountain.
Crossing into New York on the Highlands/Sterling Ridge Trail.
Not far into New York, left on the red-dash-on-white Lake-To-Lake Trail.
It starts out nice and smooth ...
... but becomes very swampy off and on.
There is a bridge for crossing Jennings Creek but some prefer to wade across.
Jennings Creek
At the intersection with the green trail (there is no green trail on the map) turn left on a woods road ...
... with faint yellow blazes.
This runs into the yellow-blazed Jennings Hollow Trail which is supposed to go either left or right but I never saw the intersection or a turn to the left so right it was.
Lots of swampy trail.
And lots of pretty and dry trail, too.
A beaver lodge in the swamp.
A wood duck.
A very pretty swamp with, surprisingly, no annoying bugs.  The dragonflies must have been keeping them away.
A puddle frog.
A swamp frog.
Did I mention how swampy parts of the trails are?
Watch for this intersection.  The yellow trail veers left here but it is very easy to continue straight on the more defined woods rood since there is no turn blaze and it appears you should stay on the woods road.
The yellow trail veers left and crosses the creek.  There are ropes but there is nothing under them to step on so not of much use.
I stepped on a wobbly rock and slid in with my left foot so what the heck, just waded on over with both feet the rest of the way.  It felt quite nice, actually.
There is a second rope over a second crossing which is of use but if you are already wet, what the heck?
Looking back down the swamp from the other side.
There should have been another intersection where yellow goes left (back around the loop) or straight (leg of the lollipop) but did not see that intersection either.
When yellow ends, left on Highlands/Sterling Ridge Trail then right on the woods road to Patterson Mine.
Road to Beech Farm leads from the Road to Patterson Mine back to ...
... information board #4 and the yellow Hansenclever Trail.
Somebody had lunch.
Slight problem at the bridge - it was way too long of a jump for Shawnee.  What to do?
She figured it out :)

[  0.00]  Follow the green-blazed trail through the gate then to the left

[  0.10]  Turn right on yellow when green ends; stop #5 a few steps ahead
[  0.50]  Turn left on unmarked woods road at stop #6 when yellow goes right
[  0.70]  Rock hop creek
[  0.75]  Turn left at T-intersection (looks like 4-way intersection on map but it is not) then look for woods road on right somewhat obscured by blow downs; keep right when another woods road goes sharply to the left
[  1.10]  Patterson mine off the trail to the left at mine tailings
[  1.35]  Right on teal/blue-dot-on-white trail
[  1.85]  Views at top of third rock scramble
[  2.25]  Summit of Big Beach Mountain on left on other side of blow down across trail
[  2.45]  Cross into New York
[  2.65]  Cross woods road not on map
[  2.70]  Turn left on red-line-on-white Lake-to-Lake Trail
[  3.65]  Cross bridge over Jennings Creek
[  3.95]  Turn left on trail with faded yellow blazes at triple green blazes
[  4.15]  Veer right on yellow trail (yellow markers) - should be an intersection but did not see the trail going to the left
[  5.00]  Watch for yellow trail veering left towards creek (no turn markers)  - do not continue on woods road - follow yellow markers to creek and rock hop or ford over
[  6.10]  At the end of yellow, turn left on teal/blue-dot-on-white
[  6.40]  Veer right on woods road to Patterson Mine when teal/blue-dot-on-white go left
[  7.00]  Turn right on woods road (Beech Farm woods road) at T-intersection
[  7.30]  Keep straight on yellow at stop #4
[  7.50]  Keep straight on green when yellow goes left
[  7.60]  Back at parking


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you, Rebecca. She goes into a panic if we come across an obstacle where she thinks she will be separated from me. This one was tricky but by golly, she solved the problem!


  2. You got some great shots of the frogs! What a beautiful hike and I do love your dog.

    1. Thanks! The frogs (as well as the snake) were being very cooperative - that sure helps!