Wawayanda State Park

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Wawayanda State Park


Kayaker (and great blue heron) on Wawayanda Lake
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Wawayanda State Park
Location in New Jersey
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Red pog.svg
Wawayanda State Park
Location in United States
Location Sussex County
Coordinates 41°11′53.203″N74°23′51.892″W / 41.19811194°N 74.39774778°W / 41.19811194; -74.39774778 Coordinates: 41°11′53.203″N74°23′51.892″W / 41.19811194°N 74.39774778°W / 41.19811194; -74.39774778 [1]
Area 163-acre (0.66 km2)
Opened 1960
Operated by New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry
Website Official website

Wawayanda State Park is a 34,350 acres (139.0 km2) state park in Sussex County and Passaic County in northern New Jersey. The park is in Vernon Township on the Sussex side, and West Milford on the Passaic side. There are 60 miles (97 km) of hiking trails in the park, including a 20 miles (32 km) stretch of the Appalachian Trail. The park is operated and maintained by the New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry. The hiking trails are maintained and updated by the New York - New Jersey Trail Conference.

State park protected area managed at the federated state level

State parks are parks or other protected areas managed at the sub-national level within those nations which use "state" as a political subdivision. State parks are typically established by a state to preserve a location on account of its natural beauty, historic interest, or recreational potential. There are state parks under the administration of the government of each U.S. state, some of the Mexican states, and in Brazil. The term is also used in the Australian state of Victoria. The equivalent term used in Canada, Argentina, South Africa and Belgium, is provincial park. Similar systems of local government maintained parks exist in other countries, but the terminology varies.

Sussex County, New Jersey County in the United States

Sussex County is the northernmost county in the State of New Jersey. Its county seat is Newton. It is part of the New York Metropolitan Area and is part of the state's Skylands Region, a term promoted by the New Jersey Commerce, Economic Growth, & Tourism Commission to encourage tourism. As of the 2017 Census estimate, the county's population was 141,682, making it the 17th-most populous of the state's 21 counties, a 5.1% decrease from the 149,265 enumerated in the 2010 United States Census, in turn an increase of 5,099 (3.5%) over the 144,166 persons enumerated in the 2000 Census. Based on 2010 Census data, Vernon Township was the county's largest in both population and area, with a population of 23,943 and covering an area of 70.59 square miles (182.8 km2).

Passaic County, New Jersey County in the United States

Passaic County is a county in the U.S. state of New Jersey that is part of the New York metropolitan area.


The park is part of the Northeastern coastal forests ecoregion. [2] It is home to the red-shouldered hawk, the barred owl and the great blue heron, and includes 1,300-foot (396 m) Wawayanda Mountain and glacially-formed, spring-fed Wawayanda Lake with a swimming beach and boat launch and group camping.

Northeastern coastal forests

The Northeastern coastal forests are a temperate broadleaf and mixed forests ecoregion of the northeast and middle Atlantic region of the United States. The ecoregion covers an area of 34,630 sq miles (89,691 km²) encompassing the Piedmont and coastal plain of seven states, extending from coastal southwestern Maine, southeastern New Hampshire, eastern Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, southward through Connecticut, New York State, New Jersey, southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.

Ecoregion Ecologically and geographically defined area that is smaller than a bioregion

An ecoregion is an ecologically and geographically defined area that is smaller than a bioregion, which in turn is smaller than an ecozone. All three of these are either less or greater than an ecosystem. Ecoregions cover relatively large areas of land or water, and contain characteristic, geographically distinct assemblages of natural communities and species. The biodiversity of flora, fauna and ecosystems that characterise an ecoregion tends to be distinct from that of other ecoregions. In theory, biodiversity or conservation ecoregions are relatively large areas of land or water where the probability of encountering different species and communities at any given point remains relatively constant, within an acceptable range of variation.

Red-shouldered hawk species of bird

The red-shouldered hawk is a medium-sized hawk. Its breeding range spans eastern North America and along the coast of California and northern to northeastern-central Mexico. Red-shouldered hawks are permanent residents throughout most of their range, though northern birds do migrate, mostly to central Mexico. The main conservation threat to the widespread species is deforestation.

The 1,325 acres (5.36 km2) Bearfort Mountain Natural Area is a part of the park, with Terrace Pond at 1,380 feet (420 m) near the top. The mountain forest includes swamp hardwood, hemlock and mixed hardwood and chestnut oak forest communities; some rock outcrops have a 360-degree view of the surrounding highlands.

Swamp A forested wetland

A swamp is a wetland that is forested. Many swamps occur along large rivers where they are critically dependent upon natural water level fluctuations. Other swamps occur on the shores of large lakes. Some swamps have hammocks, or dry-land protrusions, covered by aquatic vegetation, or vegetation that tolerates periodic inundation or soil saturation. The two main types of swamp are "true" or swamp forests and "transitional" or shrub swamps. In the boreal regions of Canada, the word swamp is colloquially used for what is more correctly termed a bog, fen, or muskeg. The water of a swamp may be fresh water, brackish water or seawater. Some of the world's largest swamps are found along major rivers such as the Amazon, the Mississippi, and the Congo.

Mallards on Wawayanda Lake Wawayanda2.jpg
Mallards on Wawayanda Lake

2,167 acres (8.77 km2) Wawayanda Swamp Natural Area is an Atlantic white cedar swamp with a mixed oak-hardwood forest and a lake and Laurel Pond.

<i>Thuja occidentalis</i> species of plant

Thuja occidentalis, also known as northern white-cedar or eastern arborvitae, is an evergreen coniferous tree, in the cypress family Cupressaceae, which is native to eastern Canada and much of the north, central and upper Northeastern United States, but widely cultivated as an ornamental plant. The species was first described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753, and the binomial name remains current.

399 acres (1.61 km2) Wawayanda Hemlock Ravine Natural Area is a 300 feet (91 m) ravine formed by Doublekill Creek surrounded by a hemlock and mixed hardwood forest. The Appalachian Trail is located on the western edge of the area.

See also

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South Taconic Trail

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Taconic Crest Trail

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Wawayanda Mountain mountain in United States of America

Wawayanda Mountain is a ridge in the New York-New Jersey Highlands region of the Appalachian Mountains. The summit lies within Sussex County, New Jersey.

Allegheny Highlands forests

The Allegheny Highlands forests are a temperate broadleaf and mixed forests ecoregion of North America, as defined by the World Wildlife Fund.

The Appalachian hemlock–northern hardwood forest is a forest system found in the Appalachian Mountains of New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and western North Carolina. These forests occur in deep coves, moist flats, and ravines.


  1. Official website
  2. Olson, D. M, E. Dinerstein; et al. (2001). "Terrestrial Ecoregions of the World: A New Map of Life on Earth". BioScience . 51 (11): 933–938. doi:10.1641/0006-3568(2001)051[0933:TEOTWA]2.0.CO;2.