Shark River Park

Shark River Park (9/20/2010)

This relatively short hike is Hike #54 ("Shark River Circuit") from the book 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of New York City (2nd edition). We took the day off from work and headed back south again in order to explore another Monmouth County park. This was the first time we had ever visited this park, which is quite reminiscent of so many other areas in southern New Jersey. Immediately noticeable was the white quartz sand, the numerous pines, and the red brownish tint of the river. There are no vistas here, and it's relatively flat, but it's a lovely little hike within miles of the ocean.

For lunch we visited the famous Roadside Diner, one of the last genuine Jersey chrome diners, dating back from the 1940s. The cover of Bon Jovi's Cross Road was shot here, as well as scenes from John Sayles film Baby, It's You and Bruce Springsteen's music video for The Girls in Their Summer Clothes.

Total distance hiked today was 3 miles in approximately 2 hours.

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Picnic area

Trail heads

Hidden Creek trail


Lots of roots

Beautiful pine


Beach sand

Cross road

Pine Hills trail


Root-ridden trail

Box turtle

Turtle close-up

Open field [photo by Laura]

Steps to the river

First glimpse of Shark River

On River's Edge trail

Tiny critter prints

Stairs in several places


The reddish brown Shark River

[photo by Laura]

More tiny prints

Last stairs from river

On Hidden Creek trail

Trail wildflowers

Taking previous pic [photo by Laura]

The Roadside Diner [photo by Laura]

Inside [photo by Laura]

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