"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Thursday, July 27, 2017

New Jersey High Point

Montague, New Jersey
Rockview Valley Campground

After leaving Bill and Kelly in Southern New Jersey, we drove north so we could hike the high point.  Good thing I didn't know anything about the Mars Plant on the way in Hackettstown.  We just drove past.  A tour would've been fun though.

According to an article, Mars Incorporated has been churning out M&M's, since 1958. They originally debuted in 1941 and were at first supplied exclusively to the military because of their resistance to heat.

Since the drive wasn't all that long, we stopped behind a small neighborhood in the country to look for a geocache hidden in the woods.  Again, geocaching took us to another really interesting historical spot that we wouldn't otherwise know about.

We chose a private park called Rockview Valley.  It was $35 for W/E on a large grass area.  It was pretty but there were several old, unoccupied trailers parked on other parts of the grassy area.  We stayed in spot #14.  This area is where NJ, NY and MA come together.

The next day we drove off to hike the Monument Trail.  It's a 3 1/2 mile loop trail.  You can drive all the way to the top if you wanted, but we wanted to get a little hike in. 

No bears were spotted on the hike.  It was hot, humid and quiet.  No one else out here but us.

It was also very cloudy so there weren't many views to be had on the way up.

There were many cool mushrooms growing along the way.
Some were very large.
This one was nibbled into a heart shape.
Some tubular fungus.

A little caterpillar taking a rest.

A cute little salamander.

I thought this was funny.  A little off-shoot to the trail would take you over to New York.  I knew we were close.  We won't be hiking NY's high point as we've done that with the kids when we lived there years ago.

Many trails branching off in different directions.  Some are marked for winter sports like snowshoeing, so you had to watch for your trail marks.  We were following the red/green markers.

We were happy to be in the shade of the woods as the clouds started to clear the temperature really picked up and made it even more humid.

More interesting fungus.

Still not much view to see.

We did stop for a little break to pick some yummy berries.

Then you pop out of the woods and there is the monument straight ahead.  I must say, very impressive monument for the High Point of New Jersey!  1803 feet above sea level.  The monument is 220 feet tall.

A close up of the door panels.

Hurley says enough of this hike!  I'm hot and tired!

The clouds parted a bit and we did get a nicer view.

High Point Survey Marker.

Time to head down.

Some pretty flowers on the way down on this side.

There was this rocky spot on the trail to traverse which was a little tricky as it was slippery.

The white hash signifies yet another part of the Appalachian Trail.

Hurley was so happy to get down to the lake.  He ran right in and laid down in the shallow part, just rolling around, happy to cool off.

From the lake looking back up we wondered why we didn't notice the monument when we first started on the trail.  Then we remembered it was foggy when we headed out and you couldn't see much of anything.

In the small Visitor's Center was this map showing the Appalachian Trail from end to end.
We chose a few interesting geocaches to do later on.  One was at a monument at the border of New Jersey and New York.  Pennsylvania is just over the bridge.  This area is referred to as the Tri-State Area.

It was under a bridge next to a very large, interesting cemetery on an island.

Only a short drive over the bridge crossing the Delaware River and you're welcomed to Matamoras, Pennsylvania.

And on the other side of the bridge, Port Jervis, NY.

I had spotted something strange on our drive to the campground and wanted to head back for a better view when it was lighter out.  I just happened to turn my head to the right off the one lane country road we were on and saw these strange eyes looking back at me.
We turned up the road for a closer view.

Pretty creepy, but cool.


Off tomorrow to conquer Massachusetts high point.



  1. Is that a parking lot I see at the top? I totally would have driven up there in my air conditioned car. :) Good luck in New Hampshire, you may start off hot but your will need a jacket at the top! :)

    1. Yes, like several of the lower high points, you can drive right to the top. We'd rather hike it if there is a trail though. :-) We're hoping to make NH, but already disappointed we can't do Katahdin in Maine(more on that in another post).

  2. I'm so uncomfortable hiking in the east anymore with the ticks. Lyme disease is a big problem in PA. That tick is so darn small. Have you seen many? What about on Hurley? Hot and humid sums up the east!

    1. We have only seen a few. We stay on-trail and avoid the brush as much as possible. We do several tick checks too. Deep Woods Off is our friend on some of these trails. Hurley takes Nextgard once a month chewables which repels ticks/fleas/mosquitos. We rarely see one on him and I've only seen one attach this entire trip. The usual deer flies are what torture us the most. Bugs have not really been too much of a problem so far, surprisingly.

  3. Some busy times in NJ! Glad you had an adventure!

  4. Hurley looked pretty happy with that dip. We saw a lot of tics while in the east but have been lucky so far. You are right about the middle of the trail.


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