Patriot's Path: Sunrise Lake East

Patriot's Path: Sunrise Lake East (2/27/2010)

It snowed nearly two feet in the area this past week (through most of Thursday and Friday) so we weren't sure what to expect when we drove to one of the many entrance points to 35-mile long (and growing) Patriot's Path. We were very pleasantly surprised to find the small parking area across from Sunrise Lake (on Mendham Road) well plowed. Our next pleasant surprise was the condition of the trails. Clearly several others had walked the 2.1 mile stretch from the parking area to Washington Valley Road. They walked it with snow shoes, with cross country skis, with boots and with their dogs! So a good portion of our 4.2-mile out-and-back was at least partially packed snow. Very nice!

And the forest was magical, with the snow still sticking to the trees like sprinkled powdered sugar. Today's stretch is the last 2.1 miles of the 5.1-mile Hike #17 ("Patriot's Path") in the book 24 Great Rail-Trails of New Jersey. The first half covers the path from Speedwell Lake in Morristown to Washington Valley Road, which is where we turned around today.

Total distance hiked today was 4.2 miles in about 3 hours.

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In the parking lot

View to Sunrise Lake across the road

Cunningham's a NJ historian

Heading north into the woods

Sign for Libery-Water Gap Trail

Bridge over Whippany River

Whippany River west

Whippany River east


Heading east


Patriot's Path blaze

Whippany River 70 feet below


Hiker tracks

Animal tracks

[Photo by Laura]

View to Lewis Morris Park

Good path here

Beautiful blue sky

Clearly lots of hikers were here

Mansion in a clearing

Snow blown trees



[Photo by Laura]

The blaze is camouflaged

Cleaning the Kahtoolas

It was well over 40F in the sun


Houses on Whitehead Road

Swampy area near Whitehead Road

Adopt-a-Trail sign

East of Whitehead Road

Whippany River

Whippany River

Tracks from Iverson snow shoes

The woman making them

Rock-a-Bye Baby RR path

The winding river


Rail trail straight-away

Foot bridge over Whippany River

Whippany River

Laura on bank

Back to Whitehead Road

She's running in snow shoes

Like powdered sugar

Downy woodpecker

Melting ice

View to Lewis Morris Park

Park boundary

Trout sign at river

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