South Branch of the Raritan River Wildlife Management Area: North Section
Four Bridges Road, Washington Township and Bartley, Mount Olive Township, Morris County, New Jersey
28 acres


US 80 to Exit 27 for Route 206 south; going past mile marker 91 turn right onto Flanders Bartley Road (Route 612); this road in parts parallels the South Branch of the Raritan River; drive 1.6 miles and park on the right side of the road by a sign for the South Branch of the Raritan River Wildlife Management Area. 

(For maps see:

Located on along the South Branch of the Raritan River from Four Bridges in Washington Township to Bartley in Mount Olive.


The name Raritan refers to the sub-tribe, Naraticong.

April 6, 2001 -- the Green Acres Program preserved the land.


floodplain, woodland, about 1000 feet of access along both sides of the South Branch of the Raritan River, swampy areas


The Columbia Trail extends due south along the South Branch of the Raritan River, to High Bridge Borough, Hunterdon County. By using other county trails and some local roads, one can travel by foot or bike along the Columbia Trail between the South Branch Wildlife Management area and Ken Lockwood Gorge Wildlife Management Area, and Voorhees State Park approximately 13 miles to the south.


4/13/2005.  Ceferino Santana, dog Sonar and I parked at the sign for the South Branch of the Raritan WMA.  Just across the road is the end (with a red metal stopper) of a railway line heading into the distance.  On this side of the road, we can see the trail heading straight for a long distance.  Obviously, the trail was once part of a railway line. 

We walked around 0.8 of a mile along the trail and then came back. 

0.2  of a mile  --  the first larger parking area (a fishing access site); it looks like one can head across to the other side of the river here;
0.6 of a mile  -- the farm we went past (with sheep and horse);
0.8  Four Bridges Road;  the road was closed to traffic. 

The trail is easy to walk with wetlands on both sides of the trail  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney.

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney

* = plant found in bloom on date of field trip, 4/13/2005

Acer rubrum (red maple) *
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Ilex opaca (American holly) planted
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Picea abies (Norway spruce)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Populus grandidentata (big-tooth aspen)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Salix alba var. (weeping willow)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Ulmus americana (American elm)

Alnus serrulata (smooth alder)
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush) *
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Pieris sp. (Japanese andromeda)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry)

Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Dioscorea villosa (wild yam root)
Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle)
Smilax sp. (greenbrier)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis sp. (grape)

Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Allium vineale (field garlic)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace)
Lemna sp. (duckweed)
Polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese knotweed)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Veratrum viride (swamp hellebore)
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein)

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

Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)

Ferns and Fern Allies:
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)