Purple Heart Digital Nature Trail Grand Opening May 21 2PM

Come join the Jackson Pathfinders, ANJEC, Jackson Environmental Commission and the local community at a ribbon cutting ceremony opening the new Digital Nature Trail and Informational Kiosk on Sunday May 21 at 2PM at the main entrance of Purple Heart Trail.  Refreshments will be served.

Also, here is a link to a recent Tri-Town News article about the Pathfinders and the new nature trail.

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

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.

NJ State Parks (in our area)

  • Island Beach State Park

    Ten miles of pure white sand beach attracts swimmers, sunbathers, anglers and surfers. Modern bathhouses, beach access ramps, a mile of beach with lifeguards, historic buildings, trails, naturalist programs, bike paths, wild foxes and facilities for people with disabilities combine to make Island Beach a popular place.

    The state’s largest osprey colony, as well as peregrine falcons, wading birds, shorebirds, waterfowl and migrating songbirds, are found here. Island Beach is nationally known as a unique resource with over 300 plants identified, including the largest expanses of beach heather in New Jersey.

  • Allaire State Park

    Allaire State Park consists of 3,035 acres located in Monmouth County. 25 miles of multi-use trails in Monmouth County: 21.5 miles are suitable for day hikes, 17 for mountain biking, 17 for horseback riding and five for canoeing. Info: (732) 938-2371. Within the park, there are facilities for picnicking and camping. The park has a nature center that is staffed by a naturalist in the summer.

    Allaire Village, which is inside the park, is a 19th Century village listed on the NJ and National Registers of Historic Places. It is named after James P. Allaire, who owned Howell Iron Works Company in the 1830s. Located within the village are a museum and gift shop, a carpenter shop and working blacksmith, a general store, a bakery, a carriage house, a church and row houses

  • Monmouth Battlefield State Park

    Located north of Jackson in Manalapan, the Monmouth Battlefield offers year-round activities. There are interpretive and visitor centers, as well as picnic tables, a playground, and food concessions. There are trails for horseback riding and hiking; winter sports include sledding and cross-country skiing.

Information/links on other parks