Hike the Mountain Lakes Nature Preserve

Details

Distance

8 miles

Elevation Gain

280 ft

Route Type

Loop

Added by Khürt Williams

This 75-acre natural area located just outside downtown Princeton is a favorite for family walks, birding, and fishing. Originally part of King George III's land grant to William Penn, it was farmed until the late nineteenth century. In the early 1980s it was purchased by Princeton Township - in part through the Green Acres funds - and is now preserved as open space. With the Preserve’s two lakes, numerous rocky creeks, wooded wetlands, and upland forests, this park provides a diversity of ecosystems for native flora and fauna.

An 8-mile network of maintained trails traversing this Preserve, Mountain Lakes North, John Witherspoon Woods,parts of Tusculum (private) and Community Park North makes a variety of loop hikes possible. Pathways include a boardwalk (over wetlands) and paved bicycle roads. Click here for a trail map of the entire open space area, provided by the NJ Trails Association (2009).

Mostly flat terrain: from 100 ft. at the lakes to 280 ft. in the NE corner of John Witherspoon Woods.

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Know for

Photography
Hiking
Family Friendly
Forest
Lake
Picnic Area
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Nearby

Reviews

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Beautiful local hike

Have been here many times, it is really cool how the terrain changes when hiking. one minute your in the woods, the next climbing rocks, and the next in big fields. Also a lot of cool history.

Excellent day hike

I go hiking with my dog and this was a nice day hike through mostly woods. We took the widest possible loop, and once you get away from the trail head, you pretty much get the place to yourself (I went on a weekday). I'll definitely be back.

302 total saves

4.5/5

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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