Abram Hewitt’s Bearfort Ridge

Awosting, New Jersey

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5 Reviews
4 out of 5
After a few hours of rolling along the rocky ridges of Hewitt, you’ll swear you’ve been magically airlifted to the middle of Maine. A big reason for that is the stark, natural beauty of your surroundings, which range from bubbly puddingstone plateaus to an abundance of pitch pines, laurels, and scrub oaks, to the extended views of lakes in several directions, to near-total solitude. The only things missing for a truly authentic Down East experience are incessant swarms of mosquitoes. In spring-time, fuchsia-yellow penstemon and rare moccasin flowers add a touch of magic to this jagged, antediluvian environment. From there, the sharp descent grows more earnest, with the path snaking by one sentinel stone after another, part of a valley of boulders that rolled off the high bluffs eons ago.
60 Hikes within 60 Miles: New York City

DESCRIPTION FROM:

60 Hikes within 60 Miles: New York City

by Christopher & Catherine Brooks (Menasha Ridge Press)

After a few hours of rolling along the rocky ridges of Hewitt, you’ll swear you’ve been magically airlifted to the middle of Maine. A big reason for that is the stark, natural beauty of your surroundings, which range from bubbly puddingstone plateaus to an abundance of pitch pines, laurels, and scrub oaks, to the extended views of lakes in several directions, to near-total solitude. The only things missing for a truly authentic Down East experience are incessant swarms of mosquitoes.

In spring-time, fuchsia-yellow penstemon and rare moccasin flowers add a touch of magic to this jagged, antediluvian environment. From there, the sharp descent grows more earnest, with the path snaking by one sentinel stone after another, part of a valley of boulders that rolled off the high bluffs eons ago.

© 2013 Christopher & Catherine Brooks/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Awosting
Distance: 8.3
Elevation Gain: 1,651 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Moderate to Difficult
Duration: 4.5 hours
Season: Year-round
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Local Contacts: Abram S. Hewitt State Forest
Topo Map: Abram Hewitt’s Bearfort Ridge Topographic Map
Guide Book: 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: New York City Guide Book
Driving Directions: View Directions
Trail Directions: View Guide

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Recent Trail Reviews

10/17/2015

A ridiculously beautiful and challenging trail. There were a few spots where my adrenaline rushed as I had to delicately negotiate steep drops and a few were done on stooped over almost crawling but it just added to the fun. This is a more challenging hike than its distance or elevation gain might imply. It just never stops going up and down over rocks and boulders and all manner of geology The trail guide mentioned an unmarked spur trail where you can see NYC on a clear day. There were a few umarked trails and we tried one promising one for half a mile but couldn't figure out if it was going anywhere good. And we got our NYC view directly on the trail at one point anyway. West Pond is definitely worth the very short side trip just past the bluff where we could see NYC from. The only thing on this entire trail that had the slightest twinge of unpleasantness was the starting point. This is not a trail head or a parking lot or a remotely accommodating starting point. It is one of several close together tiny spots on the busy road where the guard rail swerves out 10 feet wider for a hundred feet where you can make a harrowing attempt to pull over if it is empty or even worse, as I encountered, stop on the road and quickly back into the last guard rail gap spot with lovely patient New Jersey people trying to run you over and honk at you. Sigh.

7/11/2010

Great hike. There are outstanding views from Buck Mtn, Osio Rock, Wyanokie High Point and Carris Hill. The trails are rugged, but nothing too difficult. There are some interesting mines, including Roomy Mine (which can be entered during the summer months) and at least two waterfalls. It has everything one could ask for in a hike. Best of all, no crowds. You may see a handful of other hikers on the trails, but nothing like nearby Ringwood State Park or Ramapo Mountain State Forest, which draw hordes.

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