SPARTA MOUNTAIN WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA
Sparta Township, Sussex County, NJ
1394 acres


Directions:

Tappan Zee Bridge; US 87 to US 287 south; get off at Butler exit for Rt. 23 north; left turn onto Route 517; travel south to Ogdensburg 1.6 miles and turn left onto Edison Road; travel 2.4 miles and turn left into the Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area.

Coming from US 80, take the exit for Rt. 15 and get off at the Sparta exit and travel north on Route 517 to Ogdensburg and turn right onto Edison Road; travel 2.4 miles and turn left into the Sparta Mountain W.M.A.


History:

There is a monument here to Thomas Alva Edison. On this site in 1891 Edison built an enormous complex of mines, crushers, separators, and subsidiary buildings known as the Edison Mines or "The Works of the New Jersey and Pennsylvania Concentrating Company" that made concentrated iron briquettes. At the height of the mine 500 men worked here. The mine closed on September 30, 1900. It cost him $2 million dollars of his own money, but he made it all back by using the area to mine limestone.

Edison also built a railroad system to ship the briquettes to Pittsburgh. The processing mill, factory and homes here were among the first in the world to have the benefit of electricity. Unfortunately for Edison, he began his operation just when the Messabi Iron Range in Minnesota opened up for business. Their location near major transportation routes by water gave the Minnesota mines a decisive competitive edge, and it is estimated that Edison lost close to $10 million on the venture.

Edison was down but not out. He recovered all of his losses by converting the operation to a limestone processing plant for cement, much of which became foundations for skyscrapers and large buildings then being built in New York City. There are remnants of two large strip mines used for extracting limestone, and some of the smaller mine shafts used by Edison are still open, although unsafe to enter. There is still plenty of interesting stone work to be explored in the woods of Sparta Mountain WMA left from the pillow blocks that supported Edison's mining equipment and the foundations of the now dismantled mining town.

In the December '94 Activist we reported on the plight of Sparta Mountain, and you were asked to petition Green Acres for preservation. The latest issue of High Ground (published by the Highlands Coalition), gives us an update: New Jersey Audubon Society (NJAS) and the state together plan to purchase more than 1,700 acres on Sparta Mountain from Glendon Development. NJAS will use a $500,000 state Green Acres grant and a $400,000 grant from the Victoria Foundation in Montclair. The preservation of this tract, part of 2,000 acres Glendon owns in Sussex and Morris counties, is a great victory for the local citizens group Friends of the Sparta Mountains.

In the summer of 1994, many assumed that Glendon's proposed 2,000-unit development was a "done deal." But, encouraged by the Highlands Coalition, citizens organized, attended municipal hearings en masse, raised questions, documented the resources of the tract and lobbied all levels of government. More Green Acres In Sparta... NJDEP's Green Acres program and the Trust for Public Land (TPL) recently announced the purchase of 828 acres of heavily wooded, rugged land also in Sparta. The tract lies adjacent to Morris County's 3,000-acre Mahlon-Dickerson reservation and is linked to the Glendon property by the old Edison Mine Railroad right-of-way and the new Highlands Trail.
http://www.gsenet.org/library/11gsn/1997/GS70131C.TXT


Trails:

Near the parking place there is a huge area used by mountain bikes and off-road vehicles as their amusement park. As it typical of these areas, the opening is quite sandy. There is a lot of erosion on the hills because of the lack of any vegetation. You also pass through a field area. Shortly you come to a fenced-in mine opening.

About an hour or less or hiking on an abandoned wagon trail and the trail turns right and soon the New Jersey Audubon Society signs show up. I did not walk the entire way -- the trail goes between two rocky ridges.

If you go straight off trail, where the trail turns rights into the Audubon area, you will come to Edison Pond. Here is a leatherleaf bog with lots of typical leatherleaf bog plant species.

You can take the trail behind the Edison Monument that goes parallel along the road. You pick up an old mine railroad bed trail that goes along to the marsh/pond. This intersects with the Audubon Trail; it will take you to the north trail (turn left at the T-intersection to get to Edison Leatherleaf Bog.) If you continue on the railway trail you can walk onto the rocks on the far side of the marsh/pond.

The Highlands Trail goes just east of Rykers Lake but parking is far away. The north parking lot is on the (approximately) northeastern side of the intersection of Rt. 23 north and Canistear Road.


Overview:

By Eric Hoyer who is a Seasonal Naturalist with the NJ Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife.

The Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area (WMA) lies in Part of a large tract of land purchased cooperatively by the New Jersey Audubon Society and the New Jersey Division of Fish, Game, and Wildlife, it is divided into two areas with significantly different management plans. The land owned by the Audubon Society, whose mission is "to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds and other wildlife for the benefit of humanity and the earth's biological diversity" is closed to hunting and fishing and is laced with trails affording plenty of opportunity to hike and enjoy the scenery and watch for wildlife. The New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife's mission is "to protect and manage the state's fish and wildlife to maximize their long term biological, recreational, and economic values for all New Jerseyans." The state-owned portion is a Wildlife Management Area, where there is also a focus on the outdoor sportsman or woman.

The 1394 acres that make up Sparta Mountain WMA are open for deer, small game, turkey, and waterfowl hunting. There is also an established warm water fishery on the WMA. Ryker Lake, one of several bodies of water on the WMA, has been declared a "Lunker Bass Lake". Special regulations maintain the high quality of the fishery in the lake, which includes panfish as well as a healthy largemouth bass population. There are also other lakes in the area worth exploring for trophy fish.

Sparta Mountain WMA contains many different habitat types. In addition to Ryker Lake and other smaller bodies of water, there is a significant area of wetlands know as Edison Bog. Wetland habitats are some of the most important ecosystems found in the environment due to their amazing diversity and productivity. They are also quite fragile. Many species of wading birds and songbirds can be found there along with a large number of insect, mammal, reptile, and amphibian species. Wetland plant life includes heath shrubs, sedges and sphagnum moss. Apart from the wetland areas there are some hills to climb offering a moderate workout and beautiful view. There are also acres of forests to stroll through which are home to white-tailed deer, black bear and wild turkey. If you are very lucky you may even catch a glimpse of a bobcat.

For more information on the Sparta Mountain Wildlife Management Area, please contact the New Jersey Audubon Society at 908-204-8998, or New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife at 908-637-4125. And be sure to get a copy of the New Jersey's Wild Places & Open Spaces map which highlights all the Wildlife Management Areas in New Jersey. This map can be purchased for $4 by sending a check or money order, payable to the New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife, to: Wild Places Map, P.O. Box 400, Trenton, NJ 08625-0400, ATTN: Carol Nash

Eric Hoyer: http://www.njskylands.com/pksparmt.htm


PLANT LIST:
Karl Anderson and Dr. William F. Standaert (6/02/01) and Dr. Patrick L. Cooney (7/02/01; 10/02/00)


Trees:
Acer negundo (boxelder)
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Amelanchier arborea (shadbush)
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Carya glabra (pignut hickory)
Castanea dentata (American chestnut)
Catalpa speciosa (northern catalpa)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Crataegus sp. (hawthorn)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Juglans nigra (black walnut)
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Larix laricina (tamarack)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree) 6/02/01
Paulownia tomentosa (empress tree)
Picea abies (Norway spruce)
Pinus nigra (Austrian pine)
Pinus strobus (white pine)
Populus deltoides (cottonwood)
Populus grandidentata (big toothed aspen)
Populus tremuloides (quaking aspen)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Pyrus malus (apple)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus prinus (chestnut oak) lots
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust) 6/02/01
Salix discolor (pussy willow)
Salix nigra (black willow)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Tilia americana (American basswood)
Tsuga canadensis (hemlock)
Ulmus americana (American elm)

Shrubs:
Alnus serrulata (smooth alder)
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Cephalanthus occidentalis (buttonbush)
Chamaedaphne calyculata (leatherleaf)
Clethra alnifolia (sweet pepperbush)
Comptonia peregrina (sweetfern)
Cornus alternifolia (alternate-leaved dogwood) 6/02/01
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Corylus cornuta (beaked hazel)
Cotinus coggygria (smoke tree) 6/02/01
Crataegus sp. (hawthorn)
Dianthus armeria (Deptford pink) 7/02/01
Diervilla lonicera (bush honeysuckle) 6/02/01
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus) 6/02/01
Forsythia x intermedia (golden bells) 10/02/00
Gaultheria procumbens (wintergreen) lots
Gaylussacia baccata (black huckleberry)
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)10/02/00
Ilex verticillata (winterberry holly) 6/02/01 soon
Kalmia angustifolia (lambkill) 6/02/01
Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel) 6/02/01
Lindera benzoin (spice bush)
Lyonia ligustrina (maleberry) 7/02/01
Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)
Nemopanthus mucronatus (mountain holly)
Philadelphus sp. ? (mock orange)
Rhododendron periclymenoides (pinkster flower) 6/02/01 past
Rhododendron viscosum (swamp azalea) 7/02/01
Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa carolina (Carolina rose) 7/02/01
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus odoratus (flowering raspberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry) 6/02/01 7/02/01 & fruit
Salix (cinera?) (gray willow)?
Salix discolor (pussy willow)
Salix sp. (willow)
Sambucus canadensis (common elderberry)
Spiraea alba var. latifolia (meadowsweet)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry)
Vaccinium pallidum (hillside blueberry)
Vaccinium stamineum (deerberry) 6/02/01
Viburnum acerifolium (maple leaf viburnum) 6/02/01
Viburnum dentatum var. dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)
Viburnum lentago (nannyberry viburnum) 6/02/01
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum )

Vines and Climbing Herbs:
Ampelopsis brevipedunculata (porcelain berry) 6/02/01 near
Amphicarpaea bracteata (hog peanut) 6/02/01 near
Calystegia sepium (hedge bindweed)
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Dioscorea villosa (wild yamroot)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Smilax herbacea var. herbacea (carrion flower)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis labrusca (fox grape)

Herbs:
Achillea millefolium (yarrow) 7/02/01 10/02/00
Actaea alba (white baneberry) 6/02/01
Agrimonia sp. (agrimony)
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard) 6/02/01
Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed)
Anemone canadensis (Canada anemone) 7/02/01
Anaphalis margaritacea (pearly everlasting)10/02/00
Apocynum androsaemifolium (spreading dogbane)
Apocynum cannabinum (Indian hemp) 7/02/01
Aquilegia vulgaris (European columbine) 6/02/01
Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla) 6/02/01
Arctium minus (common burdock)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Asclepias exaltata (poke milkweed)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed) 7/02/01
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster) 10/02/00
Aster schreberi or macrophyllus (aster)
Aster spp. (asters) lots of them
Aureolaria flava (false foxglove)
Barbarea vulgaris (common wintercress) 6/02/01
Boehmeria cylindrica (false nettle)
Brasenia schreberi (water shield)?
Calla palustris (wild calla) 6/02/01
Caulophyllum thalictroides (blue cohosh)
Centaurea maculosa (spotted knapweed) 7/02/01 10/02/00
Cerastium vulgatum (mouse-ear chickweed)
Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)
Chimaphila maculata (spotted wintergreen)
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum (ox-eye daisy) 7/02/01
Chrysosplenium americanum (golden saxifrage) 6/02/01 near
Cichorium intybus (chicory)10/02/00
Cicuta lutetiana (enchanter's nightshade) 7/02/01
Cirsium vulgare? (bull thistle)
Collinsonia canadensis (horsebalm)
Conyza canadensis (horseweed)
Cypripedium acaule (pink lady slipper) 6/02/01
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) 7/02/01
Decodon verticillata (swamp loosestrife)
Desmodium glutinosum (tick trefoil)
Dianthus armeria (Deptford pink) 6/02/01
Drosera intermedia (spatulate-leaved sundew) seen from a distance
Chicum vulgare (viper's bugloss) 7/02/01
Epifagus virginiana (beech drops) lots
Erigeron annuus (daisy fleabane) 7/02/01
Erigeron philadelphicus (Philadelphia daisy fleabane) 6/02/01
Eupatorium purpureum (sweet joe-pye-weed) 7/02/01 soon; 10/02/00
Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot) 10/02/00
Euthamia graminifolia (grass-leaved goldenrod)
Fragaria virginiana (wild strawberry) 6/02/01
Galium lanceolatum (wild licorice) 6/02/01 near
Galium mollugo (wild madder)
Gaultheria procumbens (wintergreen)
Geranium maculatum (wild geranium)
Geum canadense (white avens) 7/02/01
Glechoma hederacea (gill over the ground) 6/02/01
Goodyera pubescens (rattlesnake plantain)
Hieracium caespitosum (yellow king devil) 6/02/01
Hieracium paniculatum (panicled hawkweed)
Hypericum punctaum (spotted St. Johnswort) 7/02/01
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed)
Iris versicolor (blue flag) 6/02/01 soon
Krigia biflora (two flowered cynthia) 6/02/01 near
Laportea canadensis (wood nettle)
Lepidium virginicum (peppergrass) 6/02/01 near
Lilium canadense? (Canada lily)?
Linaria vulgaris (butter and eggs) 7/02/01
Lobelia inflata (Indian tobacco)
Lycopus sp. (water hore hound)
Lysimachia ciliata (fringed loosestrife)
Lysimachia quadrifolia (whorled loosestrife)
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower) 6/02/01
Medeola virginiana (Indian cucumberroot) 6/02/01
Medicago lupulina (black medick) 6/02/01
Melampyrum lineare (cowwheat) 7/02/01
Melanthium sp. (bunch flower)
Melilotus alba (white sweet clover) 7/02/01 10/02/00
Mitella diphylla (two-leaved mitrewort) 6/02/01 near
Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot)
Monotropa uniflora (Indian pipe) 7/02/01 recent new ones
Nuphar advena (yellow pond lily) 6/02/01
Nymphaea odorata (fragrant white water lily) 7/02/01
Oenothera biennis (common evening primrose)10/02/00
Orchis spectabilis (showy orchis)
Origanum vulgare (wild marjoram)10/02/00
Orobanche uniflora (cancer root) 6/02/01
Osmorhiza claytonii (sweet cicely)
Oxalis dillenii (yellow wood sorrel)
Paronychia canadensis (forked chickweed)
Pedicularis canadensis (lousewort) 6/02/01
Penstemon digitalis (beard tongue)
Pilea pumila (clearweed)
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain) 6/02/01
Plantago major (common plantain)
Plantago rugelli (plantain)
Polygonatum pubescens (hairy true Solomon's seal)
Polygonum amphibium (water smartweed)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose knotweed) 7/02/01 10/02/00
Polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese knotweed)
Polygonum sagittatum (arrow-leaved tearthumb)
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed)
Potentilla norvegica (rough cinquefoil)
Potentilla recta (sulphur cinquefoil)
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil) 6/02/01
Prenanthes trifoliolata (tall rattlesnake root)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal)
Pyrola elliptica (shinleaf) 7/02/01
Ranunculus abortivus (kidney-leaf buttercup)
Ranunculus acris (tall buttercup) 6/02/01 7/02/01
Ranunculus hispidus var. nitidus (swamp buttercup)
Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima (black-eyed Susan) 7/02/01
Rumex crispus (crisped leaved dock)
Rumex obtusifolius (broad-leaved dock)
Sanicula canadensis (black snakeroot) 6/02/01 near
Sanicula marilandica (black snakeroot) 6/02/01 near
Sarracenia purpurea (pitcher plant)
Satureja vulgaris (wild basil) 7/02/01
Senecio aureus (golden ragwort) 6/02/01
Senecio obovatus (ragwort)?
Silene latifolia (white campion) 6/02/01 7/02/01
Silene vulgaris (bladder campion) 6/02/01 7/02/01
Smilacina racemosa (false Solomon's seal) 6/02/01
Solidago bicolor (silverrod)10/02/00
Solidago caesia (blue stem goldenrod)10/02/00
Solidago patula? (goldenrod)
Solidago rugosa (goldenrod)
Stellaria graminea (common stitchwort) 6/02/01
Stellaria media (common chickweed)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion)
Thalictrum dioicum (early meadowrue)
Thalictrum pubescens (tall meadowrue) 6/02/01
Trientalis borealis (star flower) 6/02/01
Trifolium aureum (yellow clover) 7/02/01 10/02/00
Trifolium hybridum (alsike clover) 7/02/01
Trifolium pratense (red clover) 6/02/01 7/02/01 10/02/00
Trifolium repens (white clover) 6/02/01 7/02/01 10/02/00
Trillium cernuum (nodding trillium) 6/02/01 past
Tussilago farfara (coltsfoot)
Typha latifolia (broad-leaved cattail)
Uvularia perfoliata (perfoliate bellwort)
Uvularia sessilifolia (sessile-leaved bellwort)
Veratrum viride (swamp hellebore)
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein) 7/02/01
Verbena alba (white vervain)
Veronica officinalis (common speedwell) 6/02/01
Viola conspersa (American dog violet)
Viola cucullata (marsh blue violet) 6/02/01
Viola palmata (wood violet) 6/02/01
Viola pubescens (yellow forest violet)
Viola sagittata (arrowhead violet)
Viola sororia (common blue violet)
Zizia aurea (golden alexanders) 6/02/01

Rushes and Sedges:
Carex bebbii (sedge)
Carex blanda (sedge)
Carex foenea (dryspike sedge)
Carex gracillima (sedge)
Carex lacustris (sedge)
Carex laxiflora (sedge)
Carex pellita (woolly sedge)
Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge)
Carex seorsa (sedge)
Carex stipata (sedge)
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)
Carex vulpinoidea (sedge)
Dulichium arundinaceum (three-way sedge)
Juncus tenuis (path rush)
Luzula multiflora (wood rush) 6/02/01
Scirpus atrovirens (dark green bulrush)

Grasses:
Arrhenantherum elatius (tall oatgrass) 6/02/01 near
Bromus sp. (brome grass)
Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass) 6/02/01
Festuca subverticillata (nodding fescue)
Elytrigia repens (quack grass)
Leersia oryzoides (rice cut grass)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer tongue grass)
Phleum pratense (timothy grass)
Poa alsodes (bluegrass)
Poa annua (annual bluegrass) 6/02/01
Poa compressa (Canada bluegrass) 6/02/01 near
Setaria sp. (fox tail grass)

Ferns and Fern Allies:
Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)
Lycopodium clavatum (common clubmoss)
Lycopodium obscurum (pine tree clubmoss)
Athyrium filix-femina (lady's fern)
Botrychium dissectum (dissected grapefern)
Botrychium virginianum (rattlesnake grapefern)
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (hay-scented fern)
Dryopteris carthusiana (spinulose wood fern)
Dryopteris marginalis (marginal woodfern)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Osmunda claytoniana (interrupted fern)
Osmunda regalis (royal fern)
Polypodium sp. (rock cap fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)
Pteridium aquilinum (bracken fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)
Thelypteris palustris (marsh fern)
Woodsia obtusa (blunt-lobed cliff fern)

Others:
reindeer lichen
rock tripe lichen
Sphagnum sp. (sphagnum moss)


Vicia caroliniana; east-facing slope of Sparta Mountain, ca. 0.15 mile east of the sw corner of Morris Lake, Sparta. David Snyder.


April 25, 1948.

Weather and flora conspired to make the day an enjoyable one for all participants. After assembling at the Sparta Post Office the group proceeded by car to the railroad station where cars were parked and a short foray into a nearby swamp was made. Trollius laxus and Cardamine douglasii were produced in full bloom, as well as an interesting array of early spring plants in various stages of development.

Sparta Glen, a magnificent stand of hemlocks with a little mountain stream flowing through it, was chosen for lunch. It was particularly interesting to note the survival of Streptopus roseus here, since it was recorded in Britton's "Catalouge of Plants Found in New Jersey" for 1887.

Through the kindness of Mr. Lee Edwards we were permitted a glimpse of a rare horsetail (Equisetum pratense) in a neighboring glen.

The group then made a short trip to the limestone belt at Springdale to see some of the more interesting ferns found in that locality. En route home a final foray was made into a wooded swamp near Succasuna under Mr. G. G. Nearing's guidance where Helonias bullata was coming into bloom, as well as Coptis trifolia.

We were very fortunate on this field trip to have such able botanists as Mr. E. J. Alexander, Mr. Lee Edwards, and Mr. G. G. Nearing to help us out of any difficulties in identification which confronted us during the day. Attendance 20. Leader, James K. McGrath.


SPARTA. May 30, 1935.

On May 30th a small party visited a few of the interesting spots in the vicinity of Sparta, NJ. In the morning a search was made for ferns in a swampy section along the railroad west of the town. Dryopteris hybrids were frequent and colonies of Botrychium matricariaefolium and Ophioglossum vulgatum were seen.

In Sparta Glen the Phegopteris dryopteris and Phegopteris polypodioides colonies were visited and Streptopus roseus was seen in flower. In the afternoon the party visited the Pine Swamp near the top of the hills east of Sparta. Only one noteworthy fern was found here, a few plants of Botrychium angustisegmentum at the edge of the swamp, but other interesting plants were noted. Calla palustris, Clintonia borealis and Nemopanthus mucronata were in flower.

The possibility of Arceuthobium pusillum occurring on the Black Spruce was suggested and everybody searched for it on the small trees near the trail.

Mr.. V. L. Frazee soon found a tree which had a number of the little plants growing on the twigs. This is the second NJ station to be discovered for the dwarf mistletoe, the other being at the bog west of Lake Mashipacong near the top of the Kittatinny ridge in Sussex County. This bog is also called a "Pine Swamp." The Sparta Pine Swamp is located at the extreme eastern edges of Sussex County about 35 miles form New York City. ?The elevation is 1,250 feet above sea level which is about 540 feet higher than the Mashipacong Pine Swamp.

Trip Leader was James L. Edwards.


SPARTA
May 30, 1935

On May 30th a small party visited a few of the interesting spots in the vicinity of Sparta, NJ. In the morning a search was made for ferns in a swampy section along the railroad west of the town. Dryopteris hybrids were frequent and colonies of Botrychium matricariaefolium and Ophioglossum vulgatum were seen.

In Sparta Glen the Phegopteris dryopteris and Phegopteris polypodioides colonies were visited and Streptopus roseus was seen in flower.

In the afternoon the party visited the Pine Swamp near the top of the hills east of Sparta. Only one noteworthy fern was found her, a few plants of Botrychium angustisegmentum at the edge of the swamp, but other interesting plants were noted. Calla palustris, Clintonia borealis and Nemopanthus mucronata were in flower.

The possibility of Arceuthobium pusillum occurring on the Black Spruce was suggested and everybody searched for it on the small trees near the trail.

Mr.. V. L. Frazee soon found a tree which had a number of the little plants growing on the twigs. This is the second NJ station to be discovered for the dwarf mistletoe, the other being at the bog west of Lake Mashipacong near the top of the Kittatinny ridge in Sussex County. This bog is also called a "Pine Swamp." The Sparta pine Swamp is located at the extreme eastern edges of Sussex County about 35 miles form New York City. ?The elevation is 1,250 feet above sea level which is about 540 feet higher than the Mashipacong Pine Swamp.

James L. Edwards


Sparta to Springdale September 1948 p. 582.


May 18-20 Sparta N.J. nature conference.

In its 37 years of operation the annual spring nature conference has lost the use of the Pines and now of the Haltere through changes in management and policy. This year accommodations were found at Manor Farm Hotel at the end of Lake Mohawk. This location gave the group much new territory to explore although some trips were scheduled to familiar areas at Culvers Lake, Stokes Forest, and the Pines. As usual, the attendance overflowed the facilities.

Those present and those who have attended in other years appreciate the devotion and graciousness with which Mr. Wallace Husk has met the problems of accommodations. No less devoted has been Mr. James Hawley's attention to details of the program for these busy days. Every year he has enlisted an amazing array of instructors whose services would ordinarily command a high remuneration from the "customers."

Total attendance, 92.


Supposedly: The old Edison Mine abandoned railroad bed, which intersects with Haywards Road, off Milton Road in Sparta Township, provides access to the Weldon Brook WMA, as well as connecting to the Sparta Mountain WMA to the north and Mahlon-Dickerson Reservation to the south.

Going south down the trail you pass over a brook (with dark tea colored water) and pass by a marsh. Then you come to an intersection with the blue and yellow trail. The blue trail goes south and east, while the yellow trail goes south only from here. Following straight ahead takes one to the Weldon Road - Saffin Pond parking area by the huge marsh.