Rancocas State Park

 

A few weeks ago, during the hottest August weekend in recent memory, I was planning an early morning trip to Tyler State Park in PA with a women’s hiking meetup group. When the group decided to cancel for the weather, I didn’t want to waste the few rare solo hiking hours I already carved out. After consulting South Jersey Hikes’ list of ten best SJ trails, I decided to hit the south end of Rancocas State Park in Hainesport.

This excursion has everything. Exceptionally well-marked trails, incredible views of Rancocas Creek, ruins of old buildings, and even little QR code scan thingies where you can learn more about the local flora if you’re into that sort of thing. I did five miles, which currently seems to be my solo hike sweet spot, but I felt like I could have easily done double that here if I wasn’t heading into the hottest part of the day.

The trailhead is located in a residential area, but when you least expect it you’ll see the sign pop up on the left just before a dead end. There are a few instructional signs posted by the park service, including one that warns hikers to be wary when hunting season starts in September. For that reason, I might avoid taking my kids here in the cooler months, but this park will definitely go into the regular rotation of kid-friendly and fun hikes.

This was also one of the more remote-feeling hikes you’ll find in the area, one of the few trails I’ve experienced that doesn’t seem to dead-end in a parking lot. If you want to check it out on your own, here’s an online copy of the trail map. Looking forward to exploring this one some more, especially when the fall colors are on full display.

 

 

 

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