Purple Heart Digital Nature Trail Construction Day

Today on President’s Day 2017 we had a fantastic turnout and great weather (sunny and near 60 deg) for the installation and construction of the kiosk and digital nature trail posts at the Purple Heart trail.  This is a project where the Jackson Pathfinders are partnering with the Jackson Environmental Commission via funding by an ANJEC grant for the construction of an interpretive trail at the Bunker Hill Bogs in Jackson.  We expect to complete the project in the next 2 months.

Special thanks to the following:

  • Troop 152 who showed up with enthusiasm and helped with lugging of some equipment and supplies, trail trimming and for doing some long overdue bulk trash cleanup in the East Cranberry Bog
  • Earle Tree Service for donating some time and equipment for the main construction of the kiosk and digging of holes
  • Ocean County Votech of Brick for building of roof structure of the kiosk
  • Jackson Pathfinders and Jackson Environmental Commision for envisioning the project and helping during construction
  • ANJEC for the main funding of the project via the Open Space Stewardship Funding grant

FREC Full Moon Hike – Feb 10

February 10, 2017
7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

Join us at the Forest Resource Education Center (FREC) for a full moon walk amongst the trees followed by hot chocolate at the interpretive center.  This walk is sponsored by the FREC and co-sponsored by the Jackson Pathfinders.  Several walking options will be provided; a more vigorous hike for those who would like to walk briskly on the moonlit trails within the forest and a slower paced, guided interpretive tour during which our naturalists will talk about our forest’s beautiful features.  With Valentine’s Day just a few days later, join us to share your love for our healthy forest.   This event is free.  The walks will be approximately an hour or so; please dress for the weather.

Registration is required by calling (732) 928-2360.  Please provide name, phone number and the number of people, so that the FREC can contact you in case of inclement weather and/or cancellation.

For more information, visit the FREC website.

Mega Montage

A mix of both new and old photos…

Announcing our new website!

Whoa! Something has changed around here …

So it’s been long in the making, but we finally have a more modern and mobile-friendly look for our website.  We hope you enjoy the new format.

Please come to the events we have.  They’re lots of fun and what ultimately makes up a community of people sharing similar interests.  There are so many lovely trails in Jackson to explore, and new ones that await with a little help from our friends.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said:

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

So whether you just want to get some fresh air, a bit of exercise, take the dogs for a walk, venture out for a geocache, help on a trail beautification day, or simply explore some nature you haven’t seen in Jackson, please do take advantage of all the hard work the Pathfinders have put in over the years!

Continue reading “Announcing our new website!”

Volunteer to Help

If you are interested in volunteering or just wish to make a comment or suggestion use one of the following means of communication:

There are many opportunities to assist individually or as a group such as with the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts.  Some ideas follow.

Get Involved by Participating

You or your organization can participate in any of our activities.

  • Join any of our trail work days throughout the year
  • Sign up for our “Adopt a Trail” or “Keep It Nice” programs
  • Approach the Pathfinders with a scouting project such as Eagle Scout project or to simply take your den or pack on a hike and bring some bags to do some cleanup.  Or the younger scouts can play “stick in the mud” where they can gather and throw sticks in the mud to help soak up water on some of the wetter trails.
  • Join us in our hiking or other group activities

Become an Active Member

We have a lot of committees (see About the Pathfinders for a complete list) where you can volunteer to be elected as a formal member of Pathfinders. Use your skills and/or learn some new ones.

  • Mapping (using Global Positioning System or GPS)
  • Grants, Land Acquisition
  • Trail Management
  • Bicycling, Hiking, Fishing
  • Membership, Publicity, Event Planning

Contact the Membership Committee for more information.

ANJEC Project @ Purple Heart

The Jackson Pathfinders in cooperation with the Jackson Environmental Commission have been awarded an Open Space Stewardship Funding grant from Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions (ANJEC) in the amount of $1300 for an environmental awareness project at the Purple Heart trail.

The project includes constructing an informational kiosk at a midway point along the Purple Heart trail and a self-guided digital nature walk (interpretive trail) having numerous informational signs along the way to educate the public on local natural resources.  In addition to the informational signs themselves, there will be QR codes that you can scan using your mobile device to immediately obtain more details online for the given subject.  Links are expected to be hosted on the Pathfinders website.

The project is expected to be completed by Summer 2017.  As always we welcome any volunteers to assist with the project.  As an example, Ocean County Vocational Technical School in Brick is graciously constructing the kiosk off-site for us.

More details

Past Eagle Scout Project Photos

Shown are some photos taken from previous projects along the Silver Stream and Steve Kitay Living Trails.

How Trails Benefit Our Community

  1. They increase our property values.
  2. They increase community pride.
  3. They improve our quality of life.
  4. They provide a cleaner environment.
  5. They reduce traffic by providing paths for alternative transport.
  6. They promote health and fitness.
  7. They help reduce crime.
  8. They provide Eco-tourism.
  9. They conserve linked native ecosystems and landscapes.
  10. They provides low cost opportunities for family activities.
  11. They provide a safer and quieter way to get to community focal points.
  12. They provide opportunities for children to be directly involved in creating or protecting a trail with significant environmental impact.
  13. They provide citizenship training for students by involving them in developing a permanent community project.
  14. Provide opportunities for trail improvement projects of all kind.
  15. Helping to build a trail will instill a sense of ownership.
  16. The pride that students gain from stewardship will be passed down to their children, helping to preserve these Greenways for generations to come.
  17. Greenways provide comprehensive trail and linear park systems that provide bikeways, pedestrian paths, horse trails and recreation for residents, families, and children.

Parks in Jackson Township

The Jackson Township offers several parks for athletic activities and recreation. It has 5 athletic fields, several playgrounds, and quiet areas for hiking, riding and biking. Except for Patriot’s Park at Bowman Road which is an Ocean County Parks and Recreation facility, all these parks are maintained by the Township’s Recreation Department.

Parks open at regular hours except when there are programs being held by the Township’s Recreation Department.

For more information, please contact Park, Playground and Athletic Field Maintenance at (732) 928-1200.


Athletic Fields(open 6 am – 9 pm)





John F. Johnson, Jr. Memorial Park

Cooks Bridge Road and Manhattan Street

95 acres

soccer, baseball, tennis, fitness trail, picnic area with grills, playground

Patriot’s Park

Bowman Road

88.23 acres

soccer, softball, basketball, playground

Camp Joy

New Prospect Road

26 acres

baseball, basketball, sand volleyball

Woodlane Park

Woodlane and Forest Drives

11.5 acres


Jackson Township Justice Complex

West Veteran’s Highway

soccer, baseball, playground (The Jackson Jungle)


Neighborhood Parks (open 9 am – 6 pm; 9 am – 8 pm Memorial Day through Labor Day)





Harfield Park

Andover Drive

3 acres

basketball, playground

Flair Ridge Park

Buckingham Drive

1.8 acres

softball, basketball, playground


Other Parks for Recreation (open 6 am – 9 pm)





Gil Putnam Memorial Park

West Veterans Highway (Route 528)

2+ acres

basketball, playground, picnic

Lake Enno Recreation Facility

Lakeview Drive

2.5 acres

fishing, boating, nature trail, picnic area with grills