Tag Archives: Paramus

Fairway Oaks Park


Fairway Oaks Park

Fairway Oaks Park

Fairway Oaks Park, located off of Paramus Road in Paramus, NJ was a pleasant surprise the day I discovered it. I explored it on bike during a trip to nearby Saddle River Park. Fairway Oaks Park, located to the west of the Fairway Oaks housing development contains a playground, Flowering Dogwood Grove and a walking path around a detention basin.

Detention Basin

Detention Basin

The grasses and wildflowers of a detention basin serve a two fold purpose. They help to soak up urban runoff and provide a home for birds and small mammals such as groundhogs, chipmunks, squirrels and rabbits. Urban runoff is held in the detention basin and released in a regulated fashion into drainage systems. The grass and wildflowers of a detention basin are cut annually to help ensure next year’s growth. While exploring the path around the detention basin I saw quite a few groundhogs, rabbits and many birds of different species.

Cottontail Rabbit

Cottontail Rabbit

The Borough of Paramus Shade Tree & Parks Commission  provided educational signage regarding aspects of the natural environment that is found in Fairway Oaks Park.

Sweetgum Tree info

Sweetgum Tree Signage

Sweetgum Tree

Sweetgum Tree Fairway Oaks Park

The park is a pleasant and educational experience for residents of the Fairway Oaks development, Paramus and nearby communities to enjoy.

The park is located off of Paramus Road in Paramus NJ near the Fairway Oaks housing development.

Saddle River County Park!


Saddle River County Park Map

Bergen County’s Saddle River County Park is a wonderful 577 acre linear greenway which parallels the Saddle River.  There are six park areas and a historic site which are all linked by a paved path which may be used by bicycles, pedestrians and roller skating.  The total length of the trail is six miles. Mileage signs appear every tenth of a mile on the path to help see how far you have progressed.

Fishing is allowed throughout the park with a license at the trout stocked Saddle River and Ho-Ho-Kus Brook as well as the three ponds found throughout the park. (The Ho-Ho-Kus Brook is trout stocked from Whites Pond in Waldwick until its confluence with the Saddle River).

Trail maps used in this blog post have been taken from the Bergen County Parks Department website.

Saddle River Pathway BEGIN

Saddle River Pathway BEGIN

The northern section of the park begins in Ridgewood at the Wild Duck Pond Area.

Saddle River County Park Wild Duck Area

Saddle River County Park Wild Duck Area

Wild Duck Pond Area

The Ridgewood Area of the park features the Wild Duck Pond, Dog Run, picnic area and playground.

You can check out the latest bird sightings at this section of Saddle River County Park here.

Mallards

Wild Ducks at Wild Duck Pond

The trail continues through to Glen Rock, Fair Lawn, Paramus, Saddle Brook and Rochelle Park. The trail passes by Ridgewood’s Grove Park, a 32 acre Beech-Oak forest featuring hiking trails on the way to the Paramus and Glen Rock areas.

DirectionsPathway

Saddle River County Park Glen Rock

Saddle River County Park Glen Rock

The Glen Rock Area features a pond, playground and tennis.

Glen Rock Area

The Ho-Ho-Kus Brook flows to the east of this section of the park. The brook has no mow zones to help clean the water and provide habitat for wildlife.

Ho-Ho-Kus Brook Water Quality and Habitat Enhancement Project

Heading south from the Glen Rock Area will go to the Dunkerhook Area of the park in Paramus and the Fair Lawn Area which features soccer and a section for hangers/gliders.

Saddle River County Park Dunkerhook Area

Saddle River County Park Dunkerhook Area

Dunkerhook Area

Dunkerhook (which means “Dark Corner”) was named by the Dutch who first settled in this area in the early 18th Century.  This section of the park features a beautiful waterfall at the confluence of the Ho-Ho-Kus Brook with the Saddle River in addition to a picnic area and playground.

Waterfall

Waterfall at confluence of Ho-Ho-Kus Brook and Saddle River

Fairlawn Area

Continuing south past Dunkerhook is the Fair Lawn area of Saddle River County Park. Near the end of the Fair Lawn area the trail passes underneath Route 4 and approaches the Easton Tower.

Easton Mill

Easton Mill

The Easton Tower was initially built in 1900 to pump water for the estate of Edward Easton who made his fortune as a founder in the recording industry and was president of the Columbia Phonograph Company. Water from the tower was pumped to several fountains. Construction of nearby Route 208 divided the estate and isolated the tower. The tower was acquired by Bergen County in 1956 and restored a few years later. An earlier red mill tower which stood in its place sometimes leads to the present tower being mistakenly called the “Red Mill”.

Otto C. Pehle Area

Otto C. Pehle Area

Otto C. Pehle Area

Once pass the Easton Tower, the trail leads to the Otto C. Pehle Area in Saddle Brook. This section features a pond, model boating (permit required), ball fields, playground and picnic areas.

Remixed

Pond at Otto C. Pehle Area

Canadian Geese

Canada Geese approaching the pond at Otto C. Pehle Area

The final and most southern area of the linear park is the Rochelle Park Area.

Saddle River County Park Rochelle Park

Saddle River County Park Rochelle Park

Rochelle Park Area

This section of the park features basketball, tennis, and a picnic area. The trail’s terminus is at Railroad Avenue.

Trail End Railroad Avenue

Trail Terminus at Railroad Avenue

Flora at the park includes the below among others:

Fauna includes the below among others:

Groundhog

Groundhog

White-Breasted Nuthatch

White-Breasted Nuthatch

Great Egret

Great Egret

Cottontail Rabbit

Cottontail Rabbit

Painted Turtle

Painted Turtle

For more information check out the NY NJ Trail Conference description.

Hiking/Ecology Books!

1. 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: New York City: Including northern New Jersey, southwestern Connecticut, and western Long Island – Packed with valuable tips and humorous observations, the guide prepares both novices and veterans for the outdoors. From secluded woods and sun-struck seashores, to lowland swamps and rock-strewn mountain tops, this practical guidebook contains all the information needed to have many great hikes in and around New York City.

Click here for more information!

2. Take a Hike New York City: 80 Hikes within Two Hours of Manhattan – In Moon Take a Hike New York City, award-winning writer Skip Card shows you the best hikes in and around The Big Apple—all within two hours of the city.

Click here for more information!

3. Eastern Deciduous Forest, Second Edition: Ecology and Wildlife Conservation – This book is a useful tool for anyone who wants to know or hopes to help one of North America’s great natural resources.

Click here for more information!

4. Protecting New Jersey’s Environment: From Cancer Alley to the New Garden State – With people as its focus, Protecting New Jersey’s Environment explores the science underpinning environmental issues and the public policy infighting that goes undocumented behind the scenes and beneath the controversies.

Click here for more information!

Feel free to comment below with any bird sightings, interesting plants, memories or suggestions! Thank you and have fun exploring!

Check out the National Park with T blog’s take on this wonderful park!

Saddle River Park (National Park with T 

Check out the latest bird sightings at Saddle River County Park Here!

Reid Park Nature Trail!


Reid Park

Welcome to Reid Park!

Paramus Wetlands (location of Reid Park Nature Trail)

Paramus Wetlands (location of Reid Park Nature Trail)

Welcome to the Paramus Reid Park Interpretive Nature Trail!

Reid Park Nature Trail Sign

The nature trail, created in 2004 by Boswell Engineering, meanders about .20 of a mile through part of an estimated 59 + acres of forested wetlands. The trail stretches from the Reid Park fields and playground area to Soldier Hill Road.

5.15 (31)

Most of the forest is under threat of development. As of this writing there was a partial clear cut in November 2009 which the borough of Paramus has since halted.

Floating Boardwalk

Two footbridges and 3 boardwalks were placed over the more saturated soil on the trail.  The boardwalks actually rise with the water level and were installed without heavy machinery.

Forested Wetlands Interpretive Signage

Forested Wetlands Interpretive Signage

Interpretive signage describing the flora & fauna found in Reid Park has been placed throughout the entire length of the trail. Most of the signs are intentionally placed next to the items they describe.

Lichen and Moss Interpretive Signage

Lichen and Moss Interpretive Signage

Lichen

Lichen

Moss

Moss

Eastern Skunk Cabbage with interpretive signage

Eastern Skunk Cabbage with interpretive signage

Others are more of a chance encounter. For example, moments after reading the below Red-Tailed Hawk sign on my last visit, there was a screech from a Red-Tailed Hawk soaring above.

Red-Tailed Hawk Interpretive Signage

Red-Tailed Hawk Interpretive Signage

Red Tail Hawk

Red Tail Hawk (a bit on the blurry side)

Flora found along the Reid Park Nature Trail includes:

Ground Pine

Ground Pine

Fauna includes the below among others:

Eastern Gray Squirrel

Eastern Gray Squirrel

Black Cap Chickadee

Black-Capped Chickadee

Red Admiral Butterfly

Red Admiral Butterfly

Reid Park is located at the end of Spencer Place in Paramus, New Jersey and is definitely worth checking out.

Directions

Route 17 to the exit for Ridgewood Avenue heading towards River Edge/Oradell (eastbound). Proceed straight and go over the Garden State Parkway (GSP). Continue past the 1st light (Pascack Rd.) and turn left into Terrace Dr (Landmark: Savnio’s Pizza). Bear right at the fork in the road, then turn left on to Spencer Pl. (1st street). The field is at the end of the street.