OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
*Parking area is at the end of Old Stage Road off of Rte. 661 in Frelinghuysen.
Don’t Miss: Incredible overlook of Mud Pond from “High Rocks.”
Plants: Lesser bladderwort, which is found at only three other sites in New Jersey. This carnivorous plant produces yellow flowers and floats in the water, where it periodically extends the equivalent of a small trap door that sucks in insects that brush against it.
Animals: Threatened wildlife that make their homes around Mud Pond include great blue herons, red-headed woodpeckers, barred owls, red-shouldered hawks, wood turtles and longtail salamanders. Red-spotted newts, though not threatened, are commonly found in the moist forested areas of the preserve.
Four miles of trails wind through the pristine habitats, with constantly changing angles and views. The rock outcrops that overlook Mud Pond to the west and north are the largest formations of their kind in the New Jersey, with “High Rocks” providing an elevated vantage point for viewing wildlife, seasonal landscape vistas, and acres of fields and forest fading off toward the Kittatinny Ridge.
Johnsonburg’s water resources attracted Native Americans twelve thousand years ago and the Lenape tribe up to the late 1600s. Samuel Green, a surveyor, was one of the first Europeans to settle near Johnsonburg, which quickly became a busy town center and stagecoach stop. For the next 200 years, the region was known for its dairy farming operations. The area is now a bedroom-community suburb, but remnants of lime kilns, spring houses, dwellings and other structures from previous eras are evident when hiking the trails today.
The Nature Conservancy owns nearly 1,500 preserves covering more than 2.5 million acres across all 50 states. These lands protect wildlife and natural systems, serve as living laboratories for innovative science and connect people to the natural world.