We recently checked out Cheesequake State Park, located in Middlesex County, near where Tom grew up. He hadn't been there since he was a kid, and this was my first visit!
For more information about the park and to get a map, visit the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Parks and Forestry here.
This park is unique - the trails range from dirt to gravel to boardwalk to even sand! In addition to all the trail types, visitors experience forest, marshes, and open fields. The ocean is only a few miles away from the park, and I definitely got a beachy feel from the sand trails and even the types of trees in the park.
We started at the trail head, where all the trails converge. We split off onto the Blue Trail and went past a small pond. When the trails met up again later, we took the Green Trail around the southeastern perimeter of the park. Our total hike was 3.5 miles.
The trails, ranging from 1 mile to approximately 3 miles, are well-marked and there are even distance markers along the way. The trails we went on ranged from easy to moderately difficult with some changes in elevation.
The park is a pretty popular place - even though we were there on a cloudy, damp day, there were lots of other hikers and the campground we passed was pretty full. All in all, Cheesequake State Park was a beautiful place to spend a couple hours hiking!