A walk in the (Woosamonsa) woods

Are you looking for a pre- or post-Thanksgiving walk? We’ve previously shared information about the trails in Mercer County Park as well as the Trolley Line Trail, the Lawrence Hopewell Trail, the Union Transportation Trail and the section of the D&R Canal along the Delaware River. Now WWBPA board member Anne Clifton shares her experience in the Woosamonsa Ridge Preserve in Pennington.

The Woosamonsa Ridge Preserve in north Pennington is an ideal site for a quiet hike amidst fall foliage in Mercer County. Located about 17 miles (a 25-minute drive) from West Windsor, this 146-acre preserve features various types of hardwood trees, wild berry bushes, fungi, creeks with rock crossings and two wooden bridges. Fallen leaves provide a soft colorful carpet underfoot. Minnows abound in the creeks. Some reforestation is underway in the valley area of the preserve.

Four well-marked trails cover about 3 miles. The Ridge Trail and Valley Trail combine to make a 2.1-mile loop from the parking lot off of Woosamonsa Road. Two connector paths in between, the Hollow Brook Trail and the Creekside Trail, allow for various figure-8 loops and longer hikes. Elevation gain is gradual, less than 300 feet, and it’s an easy hike all the way through. Most paths are wide, allowing for pairs of walkers.

Aside from a single painted bench near the summit of the Ridge Trail, the preserve is truly in a natural state. There are no picnic facilities, water, restrooms, or trash cans. Wear sturdy footwear since there are some rocks, roots, and wetlands.

Looking for more ideas? Here’s a list of more WW trails. Or use your copy of the WWBPA’s West Windsor map to figure out your own route. The book “Walk the Trails In and Around Princeton” is another good resource.

Have a favorite area walk or hike to share? Email us at wwbikeped@gmail.com

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