Mashipacong Bogs Preserve
Montague Township, Sussex County, NJ
1,000 acres


The preserve is found on the western side of the Kittatinny Mountain Range and borders High Point and Stokes state parks.

Route 80 west to Exit 25/Newton-Route 206 North; Route 206 North for 18 miles to intersection of Routes 15 and 206; turn left at light; follow Route 206 North for 5.5 miles; find the Stokes State Forest sign on the left (from here drive 3 miles more); turn right at NJ School of Conservation sign onto Flatbrook Rd.; drive 1 mile; bear to the right following Flatbrook Rd. for 4 miles to Crigger Road; turn left at a T-junction with Crigger Rd.; drove 1 mile, bearing right at fork; turn left onto Route 650 West (Deckertown Tpke.); drive 1 mile beyond Trail Blazers Camp entrance to a small parking lot on right. A 2 mile loop trail begins here.


Tappan Zee bridge west to exit 15 for US 287 south (at mileage marker 29.9); exit 52B for Route 23 north; drive about 27.8 miles (to just before route mileage marker 41) and turn left onto Route 560;  drive about 8.8 miles (just 0.1 mile beyond Trail Blazers on the right) and park by the blocked off gate on the right. 


1775  --   the East Jersey Proprietors first lay out the land.  

1800s  --  Deckertown Turnpike goes through the land.  

1848 -- 46-acre Mashipacong Pond formed to provide power for two mills owned by John Rutherford.

1924 --  state parks built around the land.

1938  --  Doris Duke buys the land and leases it to Life Fresh Air Camps (now Trail Blazers Camp).

1991  -- shortly before her death, Doris Duke donates the land to TNC.  


mixed-oak forest; the glacial Lost Lake Bogs (with black spruce-tamarack swamp); northern boreal bog.


7/01/04.  Well, I think I went too far along Deckertown Turnpike past the Trail Blazers camp and missed The Nature Conservancy parking area.  I parked on the left side of the road at a pull-off.  (Equivalent to a 3.3 green mileage marker, if they were marking every tenth of a mile on Route 650.)  The trail was an old wagon road or something similar but was not well maintained.  And it eventually petered out.  I had to bushwhack.  But this gave me a chance to look over the marsh (which later I figured out was probably Pine Swamp).  The marsh was interesting and looked beautiful with all the yellow swamp candles in bloom amid the various sedges. Found some interesting plants.

I must have gotten north of Pine Swamp and then in fumbling around got on the east side of the marsh and by accident stumbled onto the real trail with white blazes.  I did not know where I was so did not know where the trail was taking me.  It was generally going south so I followed along hoping it would take me back to Deckertown Turnpike and my car.  The trail went on and on and as a botanist I was getting tired of hiking.  When the trail went west I got off and took the trail going closer to a southerly direction.  To my surprise I ended up at the Trail Blazers camp.  Well, at least I finally got back to the road.  But then I had to walk another mile and one-tenth along Route 650 back to my car. 

Walked much more than I had planned or wanted to, but at least I got a better plant list than I would have if I had known where I was and where I was going.

5/16/05.  Parked just 0.1 of a mile west of Trail Blazers on the right (at the equivalent of 4.3 on the route mileage marking system.)  We followed the Nature Conservancy signs and the white blazes north past through woods with lots of heath plants in the underbrush.  We passed a trail coming diagonally in on the right that takes the hiker to Trail Blazer.  A ways farther up we saw a trail heading off to the right (east).  (We missed seeing the return loop part of the trail system.)  Shortly before reaching a small stream, the trail turned left and headed parallel with a swampy area with a Phragmites marsh on the farther side.  The trail then turned left again.  We figured the trail would be a reverse P shape, but the last part of the trail was so badly marked that it just stopped in the middle of the woods.  We guessed that the trail maintenance was just really bad and decided to look for the turn on the way back. 

Reversing our direction, we did find the turn (marked only one way, the return way and not the going into the woods way).  I just happened to see it on the left.  I was tempted to see if I could connect the two ends of the unconnected trail, but my buddy was already tired from walking over the rocky part of the trail.  I used much of this white blazed trail the last time I was here.  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney.

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney
dates = plants blooming on the dates of the field trips, 5/16/2005  7/01/2004

Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree of heaven)
Amelanchier arborea (shadbush)
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Carya spp. (hickory)
Castanea dentata (American chestnut)
Crataegus sp. (hawthorn)  5/16/05
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus Americana (white ash)
Nyssa sylvatica (tupelo)
Populus grandidentata (big-toothed aspen)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus palustris (pin oak)
Quercus prinus (chestnut oak)
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Quercus velutina (black oak)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Tilia americana (American basswood)
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus americana (American elm)
Ulmus rubra (slippery elm)

Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry) becoming a problem in the area
Chimaphila maculata (striped wintergreen)
Comptonia peregrina (sweet fern)
Epigaea repens (trailing arbutus)
Eubotrys racemosa (fetterbush)
Gaultheria procumbens (checkerberry)
Gaylussacia baccata (black huckleberry)  5/16/05
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Ilex verticillata (winterberry holly)
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)
Rhododendron periclymenoides (pinxter flower)  5/16/05
Rhododendron viscosum (swamp azalea)  7/01/04
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rosa palustris (swamp rose)  7/01/04
Rubus hispidus (swamp dewberry)  7/01/04
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Sambucus canadensis (common elderberry)
Spiraea alba var. latifolia (meadowsweet)
Spiraea tomentosa (steeplebush)
Vaccinium angustifolium (low bush blueberry)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry) 5/16/05
Vaccinium pallidum (hillside blueberry)
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)
Viburnum lentago (nannyberry viburnum)
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)

Convolvulus sp. (morning glory type vine) ?
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Smilax rotundifolia (round-leaved greenbrier)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis labrusca (fox grape)

Achillea millefolium (yarrow)  7/01/04
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)  5/16/05
Allium vineale (field garlic)
Ambrosia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Anagallis arvensis (scarlet pimpernel)  7/01/04
Anemone quinquefolia (wood anemone)  5/16/05
Anemonella thalictroides (rue anemone)  5/16/05
Apocynum androsaemifolium (spreading dogbane )  7/01/04
Arisaema triphyllum (Jack in the pulpit)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort) 
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)  7/01/04
Barbarea vulgaris (common wintercress)  5/16/05
Bidens spp. (beggar ticks)
Calla palustris (wild calla)  7/01/04
Caltha palustris (marsh marigold) 
Cardamine pensylvanica (Pennsylvania sedge) 5/16/05
Centaurea maculosa (spotted knapweed)
Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)  ?
Chenopodium album (pigweed)
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum (ox-eye daisy)  7/01/04
Chrysosplenium americanum (golden saxifrage) 
Cichorium intybus (chicory)  7/01/04
Circaea lutetiana (enchanter's nightshade)  7/01/04
Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle)  7/01/04
Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle)
Coronilla varia (crown vetch)  7/01/04
Cypripedium acaule (pink lady's slipper)
Dianthus armeria (wild pink)  7/01/04
Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot)
Galinsoga sp. (gallant soldier)  7/01/04
Galium aparine (cleavers)
Galium asprellum (rough bedstraw)
Galium circaezens (wild licorice)  7/01/04
Galium mollugo (wild madder)  7/01/04
Galium trifidum (northern three-lobed bedstraw)  7/01/04
Geranium maculatum (wild geranium)  5/16/05
Glechoma hederacea (gill-over-the-ground)  5/16/05
Gnaphalium obtusifolium (sweet everlasting)
Hedyotis sp. (bluets)  5/16/05
Hemerocallis fulva (tawny day lily)  7/01/04
Hieracium sp. (hawkweed)  7/01/04
Hieracium venosum (rattlesnake hawkweed)  7/01/04
Hypericum perforatum (common St. Johnswort)  7/01/04
Hypoxis hirsuta (yellow star grass)  7/01/04
Iris versicolor (blue iris)  7/01/04
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed)
Lemna sp. (duckweed)
Linaria vulgaris (butter and eggs)  7/01/04
Lotus corniculatus (birdfoot trefoil)  7/01/04
Lycopus virginicus (Virginia bugleweed)
Lysimachia terrestris (yellow candles)  7/01/04 lots
Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife)
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)  5/16/05
Medeola virginiana (Indian cucumberroot)
Medicago lupulina (black medick)  7/01/04
Melilotus alba (white sweet clover)  7/01/04
Melilotus officinalis (yellow sweet clover)  7/01/04
Oxalis sp. (yellow wood sorrel )  7/01/04
Panax trifolius (dwarf ginseng)  5/16/05
Pastinaca sativa (wild parsnip) 
Peltandra virginica (arrow arum)
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain)
Plantago major (common plantain)
Polygonatum pubescens (smooth true Solomon's seal)
Polygonum arifolium (halberd-leaved tearthumb)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed )  7/01/04
Polygonum sagittatum (arrow-leaved tear thumb)
Polygonum sp. (water smartweed) ?
Potentilla canadensis (dwarf cinquefoil)  5/16/05  7/01/04
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil)  5/16/05
Prenanthes altissima (tall white lettuce)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal  7/01/04
Ranunculus acris (tall buttercup)  7/01/04
Ranunculus hispidus var. caricetorium (swamp buttercup)
Rumex acetosella (sheep sorrel)
Rumex crispus (curled dock)
Silene vulgaris (bladder campion)  7/01/04
Smilacina racemosa (false Solomon's seal)
Solanum carolinense (horse nettle)  7/01/04
Sparganium sp. (bur reed)  7/01/04
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion)  5/16/05  7/01/04
Thalictrum pubescens (tall meadowrue)
Tragopogon dubious (fistulous goatsbeard)  7/01/04
Triadenum virginicum (marsh St. Johnswort)
Trientalis borealis (starflower)  5/16/05  7/01/04
Trifolium aureum (yellow clover)  7/01/04
Trifolium pratense (red clover)  7/01/04
Trifolium repens (white clover)  7/01/04
Typha latifolia (broad-lived cattail) 
Veratrum viride (swamp hellebore)
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein)
Veronica officinalis (common speedwell)
Veronica serpyllifolia (thyme-leaved speedwell)  5/16/05
Viola cucullata (marsh blue violet)  5/16/05
Viola macloskeyi (northern white violet)  5/16/05
Viola sororia (common blue violet)  5/16/05

Juncus canadensis (rush)
Juncus effusus (soft rush)
Juncus tenuis (path rush)
Luzula multiflora (wood rush)

Rushes and Sedges:
Carex crinita (sedge)
Carex intumescens (sedge)
Carex laxiflora type (sedge)
Carex lupulina (sedge)
Carex lurida (sedge)
Carex ovales type (sedge)
Carex stipata (sedge)
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)
Carex vulpinoidea (fox sedge)
Dulichium arundinacea (three-way sedge)
Scirpus cyperinus (woolly grass bulrush)

Anthoxanthum odoratum (sweet vernal grass)
Bromus inermis (sweet brome grass)
Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass)
Elytrigia repens (quack grass)
Glyceria canadensis (rattlesnake mannagrass)
Leersia oryzoides (rice cut grass)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Phalaris arundinacea (reed canary grass)
Phleum pratense (Timothy grass)
Phragmites australis (giant reed grass)
Poa annua (annual bluegrass)

Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)
Adiantum pedatum (maidenhair fern) 
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (hay-scented fern)
Dryopteris marginalis (marginal woodfern)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Osmunda claytoniana (interrupted fern)
Osmunda regalis (royal fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides Christmas fern)
Pteridium aquilinum (bracken fern)
Thelypteris palustris (marsh fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)

Sphagnum sp. (sphagnum moss)


Picea mariana (black spruce) NYBG specimen: Pine Swamp, second bog, Lake Mashipacong.

Andromeda glaucophylla (bog rosemary)
Gaultheria hispidula (creeping snowbewrry)
Kalmia polifolia (pale laurel)

Arceuthobium pusillum (dwarf mistletoe)
Xyris montana (northern yellow-eyed grass)

Carex rostrata (beaked sedge)


LAKE MASHIPACONG, October 1, 1939. Twelve members and friends of the club met at the new Life's Girls' camp at Lake Mashipacong. On the trail to Lost Lake two good stands of Chelone glabra were observed. The following asters and goldenrods were seen in bloom:

Aster divaricatus
Aster ericoides
Aster linariifolius
Aster novae-angliae
Aster paniculatus
Aster undulatus
Aster umbellatus
Solidago bicolor
Solidago caesia
Solidago graminifolia
Solidago odora
Solidago rugosa
Solidago speciosa
Epigaea repens was seen continually on the trail.

We approached Lost Lake, a quaking black spruce and tamarack bog, by way of an almost invisible trail through a thick growth of Kalmia latifolia, Vaccinium corymbosum, and Rhododendron viscosum. Sarracenia purpurea, Andromeda glaucophylla, Vaccinium oxycoccus, Kalmia angustifolia and Eriophorum virginicum were the most prominent herbaceous plants in the bog. Dr. Chrysler and Dr. small were rewarded for some careful searching of the black spruce by finding good specimens of Arceuthobium pusillum, the dwarf mistletoe. The lichen, Alectoria was found near the mistletoe.

A blazing fire in the fireplace of an old "Stagecoach Inn," now councilors' house, was a welcome sight on our return to the meeting place for luncheon. Rain had begun to fall and we were all somewhat chilled. Dr. Sharp, director of Life's Camps, who joined our morning trek served coffee which was much appreciated.

Five of us donned rain clothes after lunch and ventured down to Lake Mashipacong. The leader was most anxious to exhibit a handsome stand of Ilex verticillata, the branches full of bright red berry clusters. Gentiana quinquefolia, G crinita and Polygala sanguinea were observed in flower. Trip leader Eleanor Friend.

October 10-1 Sussex County weekend 1954

Mashipacong Pine Swamp was visited on Sunday to see false mistletoe (Arceuthobium pusillum) on the black spruces. How many actually parasitic seed plants do we have in the Torrey range? Myrica gale and Eriocaulon septangulare were observed at Lake Marcia. The general foliage was colorful but slightly sub-standard because the drought had caused many trees to drop their leaves ahead of time.

Attendance, 14. Leader L. E. Hand.


A visit to a muskeg in late stage of development in Mashipacong Pine Swamp produced:

Carex limosa
Woodwardia virginica
Kalmia polifolia
Andromeda glaucophylla
Xyris montana

Leader was David Fables; 8 in attendance.