December 5, 2010
This is the (an?) information center at the Great Swamp Refuge.
I got a map from the side of it. So weird–most of the places around here that I’ve hiked/ run/ visited lately have actually had pamphlets. I’m so used to seeing empty pamphlet-holders that I hardly ever bother looking anymore. Props to the good park folks of Morris/ Union/ Somerset Counties.
November 14, 2010
I like that tiiiny little “road curves” sign over on the left. I mean, there *is* a road right there, it’s just behind all those grasses.
(Not that it matters much, but this is standing just inside the entrance to one of the parking lots of the Great Swamp Refuge, looking left. Which would be… north? I think?)
November 8, 2010
More Great Swamp Refuge.
All the photos I’ve posted so far (including this one) have been of the western portion, which is maintained. Basically, humans interfere a lot to try to make things as nice as possible for everyone—birds, fish, humans, and other wildlife.
The eastern portion, which I haven’t explored yet but apparently is home to most of the trails, is more of a “you’re on your own” attitude. It was deemed a National Wilderness Area in 1968, so… they’ve gotta keep it pretty wild, I guess.
November 7, 2010
The Great Swamp Refuge (a walkway of which is shown here) has always been—or at least, has been for the past 25,000 years—a swamp.
After some sad attempts at farming in the 1800s, flood control in the 1920s, drainage projects in the 1930s, and plans for a major airport in the late 1950s, local wilderness afficianados decided they had had enough. They raised over a million dollars, bought almost 3000 acres of swampland, and officially preserved the site in 1960.
More land has been added over the years, and the refuge has been a Registered National Natural Landmark since 1966.
November 4, 2010
This is a walkway in the Great Swamp Refuge, which is a pretty huge chunk of land a mere 15-minute drive from New Providence!
The area of the refuge that I explored was the western observatory area—mostly boardwalks and observation decks and teenagers making out and that kind of thing.