Sunday, May 2, 2021

Wayayanda Lake Loop Spring Hike

Wawayanda State Park
Sussex Co.,
New Jersey

Hiking Trails:
Double Pond Trail: Yellow blaze
Wingdam Trail: Blue blaze
Sitting Bear Trail: Orange blaze
South End Trail: Orange blaze
Pump House Trail: Orange blaze
Boulder Garden Trail: Blue blaze

Total Time: 2:15 hour
Estimated Distance: 5.5 Miles

Pros: Scenic lake and good loop
Cons: Popular and busy area, lots of bikers, no vista view
Hike Type: Loop
Level of Difficulty: Easy

Google Maps of Parking:

I had been at Wawayanda State Park the previous week, and decided to explore the area some more, especially around Wawayanda Lake, the main area of the park. I parked at the boat launch area of the park, and was surprised at all the facilities and people present. There was a bike race going on, with many bikers present and some trails difficult at times because of the volume of bikers.

I took the Double Pond Trail at the northern part of the lake, and took a short detour to the old furnace, which has a fence around it so I couldn't explore it. I then turned around and took the Wingdam Trail south to the Wayayanda Lake Dam. Beyond the bridge near the dam is a short waterfall, and I took a short climb down to the waterfall. I then continued on the Wingdam Trail to the Sitting Bear Trail, a scenic trail towards the south of the lake. I then took the South End Trail around the lake to the Pump House Trail, which I then took to the Boulder Garden Trail. I then connected again with the Pump House Trail back to the northern side of the lake, by the beach, where I walked along the path back to my car.

Map of the Route

Waywaynda Lake and Fresh Bamboo from the Boat Launch

Wawayanda Lake Northern Part of the Lake

Boat Launch and Docks at Wawaynda Lake

Small Inlet at the Northwestern Part of the Lake

Rocky Area in the North Part of the Lake

Another View of the Inlet from a Rocky Part

Bike Race Participants

Old Furnace

Dam and Outlet of Wawayanda Lake

Another View of the Dam

Waterfall Below the Wawaynda Lake Dam

View from the Middle of the Lake

Rocky Promenade in the Middle Part of the Lake

Looking Across Lake Wawayanda

Dense Rhododendron Forest on the Sitting Bear Trail

View from the Southern Part of the Lake on the South End Trail

Swamp Adjacent to the Boulder Garden

Boulder Garden on the Boulder Garden Trail

Approaching the Bridge in the Swampy Area on the Boulder Garden Trail

Bridge Across the Brook at the Approaching the Bridge in the Boulder Garden Trail

Scenic Brook at the Boulder Garden Trail

Dock at the Northern Part of Wawawanda Lake, at the End of the Hike

Last View at the End of the Hike

Me on the Dock at the Lake Wawayanda Boat Launch

Me with Kayakers Approaching the Boat Launch on Wawayanda Lake

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Appalachian Trail to Wawayanda State Park

Appalachian Trail National Scenic Area /
Wawayanda State Park
Sussex and Passaic Counties.,
New Jersey

Hiking Trails:
Appalachian Trail (AT): White blaze
William Hoeferlin Trail: Blue blaze

Total Time: 2:05 hour
Estimated Distance: 4.4 Miles

Pros: Very quiet and remote area
Cons: No good mountain views
Hike Type: In and out same route with slight lollipop
Level of Difficulty: Easy

Google Maps of Parking:

Now on my westernmost portion of the Appalachian Trail in my region, this hike connected the Bearfort Mountain area with Wawayanda State Park on the Appalachian. It had just rained hard on the morning, and was cloudy, windy, and unseasonably cold. However, despite the prediction of rain until later in the day, the rain pulled out in the morning and my hike was entirely dry, so I couldn't really complain about the weather.

The first part of the hike connected Longhouse Road, near Upper Greenwood Lake, to Warwick Turnpike. This is a very sparsely traversed trail, and full of boardwalks crossing swampy areas and streams. With the very wet terrain and sprouting greens, it felt a bit like I was hiking through the rainforest. I captured many of the short boardwalk hikes in the pictures below.

I parked on Longhouse Road, and took the Appalachian Train westward, and then crossed Warwick Turnpike. After crossing the road, I passed the outlet of Parker Lake, a small, natural, beaver-dammed lake that is very scenic. I then took the William Hoeferlin Trail for a short distance, then bushwacked briefly to the shelter. I then took the short Shelter Connector Trail back to the Appalachian Trail, and then took the William Hoeferlin Trail south to the park entrance area. I then turned back around on the William Hoeferlin Trail, took the short connector trail to the Appalachian Trail, and then took that trail back along the same route that I came from.

Map of the Route

Longhouse Road at the Roadside Trail Parking

AT at the beginning of the hike

The First Boardwalk and Stream Crossing

Next Pair of Boardwalks Through a Wet Marshy Area

Crossing the Stream

Trail Bridge on the AT

Another View of the Bridge with the Vivid Greenery

Another Boardwalk

AT with Sprouting Greenery

The Longest Boardwalk, Approaching Warwick Turnpike

Through the Swamp Approaching Warwick Turnpike

AT after Warwick Turnpike Crossing

Blooming Forsythias on the AT

Another Forsythia

Dam at Parker Lake

Parker Lake from the AT

Another View of Parker Lake

Trail Bridge at the Outlet of Parker Lake

Me at Parker Lake

Beaver Dam at Parker Lake

Me at the Parker Lake Outlet

Intersection of the AT and Hoeferlin Trail

Hoeferlin Trail Marker

Hiking Shelter

A Single Daffodil Near the Shelter

Sign on the Outhouse Near the Shelter

Hoeferlin Trail Trailhead Sign