NORVIN GREEN STATE FOREST
Bloomingdale Township, Passaic County, NJ


Directions:

US 287 west over Tappan Zee Bridge; US 87 west; before reaching green mile marker 30 take the exit for I-287 south; take the Bloomingdale exit (#53); turn right onto Riverdale Avenue; right ont Mathews Avenue/Van Dam Avenue; quick left onto Paterson/Hamburg Turnpike (Main Street); right turn onto Glenwild Avenue.  Pass by Kampfe Lake on the left and shortly after turn left into a small parking area.


History:

2003  --  NJ Conservation Foundation and Passaic County purchased from East Coast Mill Sales 90 forested acres in West Milford Township to be added to Norvin Green. The parcel was threatened by development. ( Source: The Highlands Coalition’s quarterly newsletter "High Grounds" Fall 2003. published by the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions (ANJEC); http://www.highlandscoalition.org/highground.htm)

NJCF protected the Hosford Tract, West Milford Township, Passaic County, NJ, 92 acres, part of its Arcadia Lake project, helping to link Norvin Green State Forest and Newark's Pequannock watershed lands. The $345,000 funding came from Green Acres and the Victoria Foundation. There is a pond on the tract.  (Source: The Highlands Coalition’s quarterly newsletter "High Grounds" Summer 2002 published by the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions (ANJEC); http://www.highlandscoalition.org/highground.htm)


Trail:

Caution:  Hikers should either purchase Trail Conference Map #21 or stop at the Weis Ecology Center/NJAS before attempting a hiking trip through this area.

This is a very rocky trail, which makes for some difficult walking. Have to have hard soled boots to take all the rocks.

I take the blue trail (Hewitt-Butler) on the right as you face the parking area from the street. This takes you over the brook. Climbing up a short hill you pass the intersection of the green trail which will bring you back on your circular trip. Stay on the blue to the yellow and turn left onto the yellow. If you stay on the blue straight you will hit Chickahoki Falls in about 10 or 15 minutes. The yellow trail ascends and descends and then goes up to overlooks down into a valley. There is an intersection with the orange trail. Pick up the green trail which takes you back to near the brook from where you started this trip. The last descent is through myriads of mountain laurel.

Rivers are very different from brooks, so I learn the hard way. Brooks are very shaded since they are in the woods. So don't look for a lot of real early spring flowers.
pink-purple pudding stone
oak forest here

One of the best waterfall hiking trails is in Norvin Green State Forest. There, off Glenwood Avenue, the Hewitt-Butler trail (blue trail) leads quickly to a double cascade totaling a little more than 15 feet fetchingly named the Otter Hole. About a mile and a quarter from there is Chickahoki Falls, where Posts Brook takes another plunge, this one of about 25 feet.


PLANT LIST:
Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer rubrum (red maple) 4/18/96
Carya tomentosa (mockernut hickory)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Quercus velutina (black oak)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)

Shrubs:
Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush)

Herbs:
Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)
Narcissus sp. (daffodil) by the parking lot
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Veratrum viride (swamp helleborine)


OTTER HOLE PARKING AREA

Located on Glen Wild Avenue 3.2 miles from the intersection off Main Street (Bloomingdale, New Jersey).

5/7/2003 -- Parked at the Otter Hole Parking Area off Glen Wild Avenue, northwest of Bloomingdale. My host was Bob Jonas, who heads the trail maintenance in the area. Took the Hewlett-Butler blue-blazed trail for awhile to the Otter Hole waterfall, fed by Post Brook, named after a local land owner. Then we walked off trail in the valley between Buck Mountain on the one side and Wyanokie Crest on the other. Bob is doing a study of some of the animal life found in the vernal ponds of the area. Then we returned via the Wyanokie Crest yellow-blazed trail coming back. A couple of golden Labrador retrievers introduced themselves to us and followed us back to the parking lot. Bob took them to the Bloomingdale police station from the parking area.

Located not far from the Weis Ecology Center was the home of Minnie M. Monks wrote the book "Winbeam" about the farms in the areas and the day to day activities.


PLANT LIST:
Dr. Patrick L. Cooney
* = 5/7/2003 flower found in bloom.


Trees:
Amelanchier arborea (shadbush) *
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood) *
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus prinus (chestnut oak)
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Quercus velutina (black oak)

Shrubs and Sub-shrubs:
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry) *
Chimaphila maculata (striped wintergreen)
Eubotrys racemosa (fetterbush)
Gaultheria procumbens (checkerberry)
Gaylussacia baccata (black huckleberry) *
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel)
Ligustrum sp. (privet)
Rhododendron periclymenoides (pink azalea)
Rubus sp. (black berry)
Rubus sp. (dewberry)
Sambucus canadensis (elderberry)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry) *
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)

Vines:
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)

Herbs:
Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla)
Arisaema triphyllum (Jack-in-the-pulpit)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Corydalis sp. (pale corydalis, probably)
Iris versicolor (blue flag)
Lysimachia quadrifolia (whorled loosestrife)
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)
Panax trifolius (dwarf ginseng) *
Polygonatum pubescens (hairy true Solomon's seal)
Potentilla sp. (cinquefoil)
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion) *
Thalictrum dioicum (early meadowrue)
Uvularia sessilifolia (bellwort) *
Veratrum viride (swamp hellebore)
Viola blanda (sweet white violet)
Viola sororia (common blue violet) *

Sedges:
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)

Rushes:
Juncus effusus (soft rush)
Luzula multiflora (wood rush) *

Grasses:
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Schizachyrium scoparium (little blue stem grass)

Ferns:
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (hay-scented fern)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Osmunda regalis (royal fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)

Other:
Sphagnum sp. (sphagnum moss)
(rock tripe lichen)


Polygala paucifolia (fringed polygala) is also found in Norvin Green.