Falling Waters and Grand Loop Trails

Schooley’s Mountain County Park

Falling Waters and Grand Loop Trails - Schooleys Mountain County Park - Photo: Daniel Chazin Falling Waters and Grand Loop Trails - Schooleys Mountain County Park - Photo: Daniel Chazin Falling Waters and Grand Loop Trails - Schooleys Mountain County Park - Photo: Daniel Chazin Falling Waters and Grand Loop Trails - Schooleys Mountain County Park - Photo: Daniel Chazin

This loop hike runs along the gorge of a scenic brook, climbs to an overlook over the surrounding countryside, and continues through attractive woods.

40.801791, -74.78282

Although Schooley's Mountain County Park features a large picnic area, a lodge, and other developed recreational facilities, most of the park remains in its natural state. This hike passes through wild and undeveloped portions of the park that are far removed from the more heavily used areas...

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Trip Reports

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July 22, 2017
Nice hike, directions a little confusing
My husband and I hiked this today and really enjoyed it, though we did get a little confused trying to follow the directions at one point. When you get to the top of the blue trail, after you've checked out the rocky outcropping, walk past the bench (hard to miss it), and just keep following that trail. We didn't see the alleged left of the Patriot's Path before the gravel road, which had us doubting whether we were going on the right direction. But if you just follow the path to the left of the bench you really can't miss the gravel road. And though the description says the road is unmarked, it's now pink-blazed. So follow the pink blazes and then all the rest of the directions will fall into place. Hopefully this will help anyone who got confused like us! Also, this did not take us near 2 hrs and we are not the fastest/fittest people, just in case you were wondering how much of a time commitment this one really is. Enjoy!
August 24, 2016
A great short hike
<p>Really enjoyed this trail. I would say it's more of a strong moderate even though its a short hike because of some steep rocky areas and some long uphills. I went on a Monday and I never saw anyone on the trail. The unmarked gravel road also referred to the Quarry Stone Path is now marked by pink blazes. I'm so thankful for this website and the detailed turn by turn direction otherwise I wold probably still be wandering around the woods.</p>
July 30, 2012
Very nice park, Patriots Path cuts through here
<p>Living in town, I've been to this park many times. In this hike description, only about half of what's in the area is covered. There is a Green (or teal-ish) blazed trail that descends toward the brook from the lookout, although it ends at the gravel woods road (it used to continue up the opposite side of the brook from the Blue trail, but now there are signs stating not to go further, somethng about work isn't completed on that section although I've been on it in the past, wouldn't surprise me if there was damage to the trail from past floods or they have a property issue with the abutting private property owners) - what remains of the trail is pretty challenging as it's a steep climb. The Bee Line trail heads down the hill, moderate diffuculty, to Fairview Ave. (As does the White blazed Patriot's Path) Here you would cross the street, and head down maybe 50 yeards or so from the parking area to pick up the Columbia Trail (a rail-trail that stretches from Flanders - about 4 miles up Bartley Road to the current terminus of the tracks that are still in service by Morristown &amp; Erie RR at the Toys R Us warehouse - to High Bridge) You can also continue across this trail to the Gillette Trail which heads through some woods to cross the Raritan to a field that used to be part of Ort's Farm property that is now Open Space to a parking area on Mill Road in the center of Long Valley - Patriot's path designations continue along Rt 513/Mill Road from here.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the other direction from the lookout, once you get back to the lake, you can either cross on the wooden bridge over the falls or head up further to cross the floating metal bridge over the lake itself. (Sometimes this bridge seems to be closed as they've recently had to dredge the lake for Red Algae and are renovating the boathouse, I remember back in the day you could rent paddle boats by the hour here) Heading out toward the Springtown Road entrance, you could cross here by the turn to the left on the road and follow Patriots Path in the woods toward Harrington Park (formerly Falcon Fields) and beyond.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The trails in the area have really increased in number in recent years. A lot more area to explore, even when you're not looking for a challenging mountain hike. If you like bike trails, I recommend the Columbia Trail. </p>
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