PASSAIC RIVER COUNTY PARK
Morris County, NJ
711 acres


Directions:

I-287; in Morristown, get off at the exit for Route 124 west; turn right on Fairmount Avenue; left onto Watchung Avenue; right onto River Road; drive south passing Stanley Park (which is 3.3 miles north of the Passaic River County Park).  Watch for the highway turning, bearing right (don't keep going straight onto Passaic Street) and drive 1.9 miles to the sign for the park entrance. 


History:

March, 1999 --  in Future Search, Long Hill officials, business and civic groups and local residents met for a three-day conference in the Gillette School. The Passaic River Park and Pathways Committee developed the concept for the river trail.  

2000 (December)  --  Five township residents (Rosemary Agrista, Roger Edwards, Edward Gerecht, Leonard Hamilton, and Robert Stanton) began working on the first segment of the 3.5 mile Passaic River Nature Trail.  The trail will run along the banks of the Passaic River from the bridge at the western edge of Millington on Valley Road to South Main Avenue in Stirling, covering about 3.5 miles.

It is hoped that the trail can be extended to the new Town Hall, the Senior Center, and Berkeley Heights, with other segments branching out into local neighborhoods and shopping areas.

Green Acres funding ($20,000) helped the preservation effort. The Township of Chatham also donated acreage. The Clover Hill Additions (Long Hill Township) were funded through the Green Trust and federal land and water conservation grant dollars and are separated from the Chatham Township section by several miles.

(Sources: "Long Hill Township: Passaic River Trail"; http://www.longhillnj.org/lht/rivertra.htm#dec2000; "Morris County Park System" http://parks.morris.nj.us/parks/passaicmain.htm)


Park Features

Cross-country skiing , fishing, softball, hiking, picnic areas (non-reservable)


When I visited her 5/06/98 the Passaic River had really overflowed its banks because of the heavy rains via el nino.   There is a ball field here, two separate picnic areas across from the parking lot from each other, a power cut, and a short walk down to the river.  


PLANT LIST:
Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharinum (silver maple)
Betula nigra (river birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood) 5/06/98
Nyssa sylvatica (tupelo)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus palustris (pin oak) don't remember when I've seen so much of it
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)

Shrubs:
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Cornus racemosa (gray-stemmed dogwood)
Corylus sp. (hazelnut)
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle) 5/06/98
Lonicera tatarica (Tartar's honeysuckle) 5/06/98
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry) 5/06/98
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)
Viburnum prunifolium (blackhaw viburnum) 5/06/98

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

Herbs:
Achillea millefolium (yarrow)
Ajuga reptans (bugleweed) 5/06/98 lots of it
Barbarea vulgaris (common wintercress) 5/06/98
Cardamine pratensis (cuckoo flower) 5/06/98
Claytonia virginica (spring beauty) 5/06/98
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower) 5/06/98
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain) 5/06/98
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed) 5/06/98
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil) 5/06/98
Pycnanthemum sp. (mountain mint)
Ranunculus abortivus (kidney-leaf buttercup) 5/06/98
Rumex acetosella (field sorrel)
Rumex obtusifolius (broad-leaved dock)
Stellaria media (chickweed) 5/06/98
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (dandelion) 5/06/98
Veronica peregrina (purslane speedwell) 5/06/98
Viola cucullata (marsh blue violet) 5/06/98
a purplish vetch 5/06/98

Sedges:
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)
Eleocharis sp. (spike rush)

Grasses:
Anthoxanthum odoratum (sweet vernal grass)
Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)
Poa annua (annual bluegrass) 5/06/98

Ferns:
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)