Evans Preserve/Highlands Ridge Loop is a 3 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Chester Township, New Jersey that features a waterfall. The trail is rated as moderate offers a number of activity options. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
cross country skiing
A brook, a pond, a view of NYC, forest & fields in this hike on Chester Township parkland. The trail uses the former Bell Labs "telephone pole farm" and takes you through a restored grassland Wildlife Habitat Improvement Project where birders will find an incredible variety of species. Follow the red trail along the brook from the parking area. The trail ends at the white trail approximately 1 mile in. At the end of the red trail, turn right onto the white trail & follow downhill to the brook where the white trail turns right to follow a large stone wall along the brook. The trail leaves the stone wall but continues to parallel the brook to its terminus at a junction with the blue trail. Follow the blue trail over a footbridge, to the ruins of an old mill dam then left away from the brook and steeply uphill. At the crest of the hill there is a junction with the yellow trail. Turn right on the yellow trail and go steeply downhill reaching a small stream in approximately 1/2 mile. The yellow trail crosses this stream on a footbridge then turns left and heads back uphill on the other side. At the top of the hill the yellow trail turns right. Keep a sharp lookout for a trail marked with an aqua rectangle that leaves to the left. In about 300 yards the trail reaches a gravel road. Turn left on the road and follow it along the edge of the woods for about 1 mile. Just after passing a small pond through the woods on your right the gravel road turns right and an unmarked woods road continues straight ahead and uphill. Follow this road up the hill. In about a 1/4 mile it reaches a gravel road that continues straight ahead along the edge of a field. Follow it to where it turns right at the edge of the park with route 510 (old route 24) in front of you. An unmarked road goes to your right a short distance uphill to the grass covered summit of Seward Hill. Pause at the crest of the hill to take in a 360 degree view that includes the New York City skyline. Descend the other side of the hill and return to the gravel road that brought you here. Retrace your steps back downhill, past the small pond that is now on your left, along the edge of the woods to a junction with a paved road that goes uphill to your left. Turn left on this road, go past the community garden, and continue on this road as it turns right then left uphill to a parking area next to a ball field. Turn right and walk across the large open field, take note of the view to your right that includes looking down the valley towards the center of Mendham and again the NYC skyline in the distance. At the far end of the field, at the park's edge with several homes in front of you, a gravel path turns right through a break in the trees and heads downhill through a restored grassland. Follow the path downhill to the back edge of the park where you will turn right onto a gravel road back to the aqua blazed trail. Turn left on the to aqua trail and return to the yellow trail, this time turning left. Follow the yellow trail through the woods, into an open field where it turns right to re-enter the woods and heads downhill to a stream crossing on a footbridge and a junction with the red trail. Turn left on the red trail and follow it back to the parking area in approx. 1/2 mile.
Simple, quiet, hilly set of trails surrounded by nice country/suburban neighborhoods. We hiked this on January 1. Even though the area is relatively small, it's peaceful aside from signs of hunters.