Merrill Creek Reservoir

Hope, New Jersey 07844

Merrill Creek Reservoir

Merrill Creek Reservoir Professional Review and Guide

"A contemporary visitor to Merrill Creek views the placid, sun-dappled surface of a 16-billion-gallon lake encircled by forest and field atop Scotts Mountain. But this is my home ground, where I wandered as a child and where I witnessed the swift remaking of the natural landscape by human beings. In the 1960s, I played explorer here with boyhood friends, puzzling out humankind’s past influences. After a spring rain, black chert arrowheads shone against the red clay of plowed farm fields, revealing a 12,000-year Native American legacy.

Amid dense second-and third-growth forest, we found incongruous walls and sunken roads, evidence of abandoned eighteenth-and nineteenth-century farms. We explored old homesteads—overgrown, stone-lined cellar holes— with the same romantic zeal as Schliemann uncovered Troy. This 4.1-mile loop hike within the 290-acre Merrill Creek Environmental Preserve explores the north shore of the reservoir, passing through a remnant of the deciduous, conifer, streamside, wetland, and field habitats which once covered all of Scotts Mountain."

Merrill Creek Reservoir Reviews

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6/18/2006
Trails were very well maintained and marked. Visitor center had a great exhibit and info for the area. Nice clean restrooms. There were wildlife and birds about. There were benches along the trails to stop and view the scenary and wildlife.
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Trail Information

Hope
Nearby City
4.1
Distance
Loop/Lollipop
Trail Type
Easy
Skill Level
2.5 hours
Duration
Year-round, except some holidays
Season
Merrill Creek Environmental Preserve
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