Kittatinny Valley State Park
It was snowing, and the roads were a bit slick, as we drove to this beautiful state park nestled in the Kittatinny Valley. We had intended on hiking Trip #6 "Kittatinny Valley State Park" in the book Nature Walks in New Jersey, but the parking area near the gate at the trail head on Route 206 hadn't been plowed and parking on the side of the road was not available. So we continued north on 206, turning right on Goodale Road (the western boundary of the park) to see if the parking areas on that road were OK. Same story -- they hadn't been plowed and we didn't want to risk getting stuck in the 2-3 inches of freshly fallen snow. So back to 206 we went, this time turning left on Limecrest (the eastern boundary of the park). It was at the Lake Aeroflex boat launch where we finally felt safe parking. The lot was filled with SUVs and pick-up trucks of ice fishermen who were on the lake.

Getting to to the trails, though, required crossing over the runway for the small airport just south of Lake Aeroflex. There was a road just beween the airport and the lake, the only way (on land) to the other side. But there were signs forbidding us to do so, with directions to get to the trails by parking on Goodale! That's where we just came from! Ugh! Almost defeated and ready to turn back, I had a Eureka moment as I spied the ice fisherman on the lake. "We'll walk across the lake," I anxiously suggested to Laura. And that's what we did. It was frozen solid, 4.5 inches worth. Elated to finally get to the trails, we didn't care that we couldn't find the orange path. We ended up taking a yellow trail in the clockwise direction, and then a white trail along the western edge of the lake before crossing back, over the lake, to the parking area. During our hike we intersected with a blue trail, then a red trail, but never found orange. And once again, the trail maps at the park (online and at the kiosks) were basically useless because while they showed trails, nothing is labeled. So I'm still not sure where in the park we hiked, but it was beautiful and we walked just over 3 miles in 2 hours.

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Regional park office

Ice fishing on Lake Aeroflex

Plane waiting for OK to take-off

Taking off


Aeroflex Airport

Tributary from lake

Bridge to boat launch


Frozen Lake Aeroflex

He caught one

The only one of the day

Crossing the lake

Pump hut on western bank

Inside the hut

Quonset-like building west of lake

Heading south on park road

Abandoned building

Snowy scene

Wiping the informative signs

On the yellow trail

Intersection with blue trail


Sign for sphagnum moss

[Photo by Laura]

Winter wonderland

Yellow trail near Goodale Road parking


Aerial tower west of Goodale Road


Laura's there somewhere!

Nature's snow cone

Tufted Titmouse

Private residence near Park Office


Park Office

Three Black-capped chickadees

Frozen pier on Lake Aeroflex

On the white trail

Back to Lake Aeroflex


[Photo by Laura]

Still ice fishing (lower left)

Fireplace west of the lake

Another view

Giant pipes on frozen lake

Ah ... coffee!

Smack in the middle of the lake

Laura and the airport

Cat tails

This picture ...

... being taken [photo by Laura]

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