MacGregor Preserve
Old Chester-Gladstone Road, Chester Township, Morris County, NJ
The Preserve is contiguous with the Township's Tiger Brook Park (southwest part).

Located in the southeastern portion of the Township between Old Chester-Gladstone Road and the Township's existing Tiger Brook Park.  The property is adjacent to the 270 acre Tiger Brook Park will create a 430-acre parcel of contiguous permanently preserved land.


From the intersection of Main Street and Route 206 in Chester Boro; drive south on Route 206 to a left turn onto Old Chester Road; drive 0.1 of a mile (passing Hunters Trail) and turn left into the parking area.


The preserve contains the headwaters of Peapack Brook, a major tributary of the North Branch of the Raritan River along with several other trout production streams.  It is also a major recharge area for the aquifer lying beneath Chester Township.


2002 (November 16)  --  preserve dedicated. The property was preserved through a partnership of the Morris County Open Space & Farmland Preservation Trust, Chester Township and the Green Acres Program. Chester township purchased the land for $3.2 million. $1 million grant came from the Morris County Open Space Trust Fund and a Green Acres grant. The Township requested $1.6 million in State Funds. 

The preserve is named for the former owners to honor the Samuel C. MacGregor family's dedication to the land. The late Mr. MacGregor did not live to see his property preserved but his family fulfilled his wishes.


Open field (a portion of the tract was formerly farmed), deciduous and coniferous forested uplands, and forested corridor of the Peapack Brook.


The existing system of hiking trails in Tiger Brook Park will be extended into the new preserve.
There will be a link between Tiger Brook Park and Morris County's Patriot's Path trail system.

11/15/2004.   There is a huge field by the parking area surrounded by woods.  I walked up the middle of the field;  I noticed a lot of different conifers in the woods in front of me some of which were most likely planted.  Walked over to the right hand side of the field and along the woods until I found an opening where I saw some trail markers.  It is a bit weird but there are two trail markers (on one side are orange/pink markers and on the other side yellow markers/splotches.)  

The trail goes north and northeast.  Reach the AT&T easement and cross over it.  Reaching Peapack Brook, the trail turns right heading south with the Brook on the left and a big hill on the right.  I could have kept on going south, but I decided to turn left and cross the Brook at the flat wood bridge.  Turn left and walk along the trail with the Brook now on the left and a hill (with houses on it) on the right.  Come to an area with a low building set between two silos.  I head uphill to an old dirt road to the silos.  I turn left, northeast.  Come to an old shed on the left  (probably the pump station and tank of Tiger Brook Park.)  I see Tiger Brook Pond ahead and the dam holding the waters back.  Turn left and go over a larger flat wooden bridge over Peapack Brook.  The Brook flows on the western side of the Pond.  Head away from the Pond climbing uphill.  It is a pleasant, wide road clear of vegetation.  There are lots of white pine.  Bearing right the trail reaches the parking lot at Coopers Lane. 

I turn around and decide to head back.  Very close to the parking lot, on the right, is the AT&T easement.  I know I had passed it earlier so I decide to take it rather than walk back the way I came.  It makes the return a lot faster.  Head Southwest past lots of pine.  Bearing left I see Route 206 up the hill on the right.  Pass the Green Trail on the left.  Descend into low lands.  Cross over a stream and then up a steep hill.  Houses are up on the right.  Head sharply down hill.  I come to a choice of continuing straight or going right on the easement.  Luckily, I chose the right turn and that rather quickly brought me back to the huge field in MacGregor Preserve. I turn right following the path along the wood's edge and then take a left to head along the field back to the parking area  I felt pretty good  because, without knowing where the trails were going, I was able to make a nice loop trail without getting lost.  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney. 


Benjamin L. Spinelli, Mayor, [email protected]; January 30, 2001;


see the plant list for Tiger Brook Park