Splitrock Reservoir Trail is a 9.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Rockaway, New Jersey that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.
Views, Rock Scrambles, Lake, Streams, cliffs, Peaceful hardwood forest If you are looking for a challenge this is it. The trail will take you along the reservoir, over ledges, on mountain tops. through deep hardwood forests, as well as swamps. The only road crossing throughout the entire loop is Splitrock Rd. Which is a dirt rd anyway. While I was hiking this loop I felt like I was in a wilderness. The only way I new I was not was the development going on in the Northern part of the Splitrock. That section is short and then you are back in solitude. You will get to climb on Indian Rock as well as pass by the big boulder. Wildlife abounds in the area, especially song birds. This loop has a lot of Variety to it. Even though the loop takes you around the reservoir you are not along the shores the entire time. The trails weave all over the area. In fact there is only 2 sections that take you along the shores. the rest is high on Mountain tops or in the valleys.
The trail itself was moderately challenging, with spells of beautiful scenery, but trails are very poorly marked and sometimes nearly impossible to discern. There were frequent moments where I would only realize I had diverged from the path 100 yards after the fact, only to double back and try to find the correct course. If you can figure it out though, the trail really is pretty and the views from the mountain tops were great. I won't be going back because of the poor trail markings, but it was certainly worth hiking once.
Torn on this one. Construction at the lot caused us to have a time finding the trail. Once on the trail, it was fairly easy to follow. It was a challenging loop, but the trail was routed very strangely. At one point the blazes go up and over a rock formation that is in the middle of green woods. Why not just go around it? Of course another side trail was formed by people doing just that. In another area the trail parallels a double wide gravel road/atv trail about 30 feet in the woods and over a serious talus field. Again, why would they double the impact and create a trail when they could have adjoined with atv trail? The whole time I was thinking "why aren't we just walking on that." Some decent views of the lake. Make sure to have a map and don't miss your turnoffs.
Spring 2015 I choose this hike for our first hike of the season and was disappointed. The only thing challenging was driving up the 200 pothole dirt road to the parking lot. There is a lot of construction going on and you can not cross by the dam which was one of the reasons I chose this hike. There were several construction workers near the parking lot and dam that never told us, "Don't go that way it's closed." We only did 3.5 miles in and turned around. Not much scenery and even though we had a clear day the wind was brutal coming off the water. The path didn't have much to it except you had to walk up half wet creeks causing your boots to sink in mud. Kayaking or fishing might be a better choice for this area. I'm not being picky either. I'm an experienced hiker and have been doing it for years.
path difficult to find from parking lot due to construction and placing of power lines. path was not maintained as of 4/12/13 - down trees, tons of leaves covering it, etc... felt like i was the only person who had been there in some time
this is the best hike in new jersey IF you have the nynjtc's highlands map...its a hiking playground if you can orient yourself. in spite of the attempts of kinnelon developers to ruin the sense of solitude, this is still the most remote feeling hike in the state.
if you aren't an experienced hiker I highly suggest not trying this without maps. you Will get lost or waste hours on top of what is a 7-8 hour hike trying to find the trail.
This is actually in Rockaway Township. The trail provides pleasant woodlands, a quiet reservoir, and the remains of a 19th century iron furnace operation. One approach takes you across a one-lane road atop the reservoir's dam. Parking is limited and, because of past problems and territorial disputes, parking and other rules are fairly strictly enforced.