Trail Run Project Logo

Orchard/Hamilton/Pioneer Loop

Intermediate
  3.5 ( 2 ) Favorite

Trail

6.4 mile 10.3 kilometer loop
93% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 682' 208 m
Descent: -698' -213 m
High: 861' 262 m
Low: 375' 114 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 20% (11°)

Dogs

Leashed
Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by Kristen Arendt

A loop on wooded trails with the added bonus of a glimpse into the park's rich pastoral past.

Kristen Arendt

Features Fall Colors · Wildflowers

Overview

This run offers visitors a glimpse into the history of the park as well as views of the Delaware River and stretches of quiet trail through the woods.

Description

Parking can be found at the Donkeys Corner Trail parking area. The run starts on the Orchard Trail: Millbrook Village to Hamilton Ridge Trail Connector which can be accessed off of Old Mine Road, just north of the Millbrook Village Historic Site and Millbrook Ranger Station.

From the start, climb a short hill on the Orchard Trail: Millbrook Village to Hamilton Ridge Trail Connector. The trail quickly flattens out and then starts a very gradual descent to its junction with the Hamilton Ridge Trail where you'll take a left. Continue along the Hamilton Ridge Trail for a little over a mile and a half. The trail continues gradually descending through the majestic eastern hardwood forests the are prominent in the area. This trail was once a road, and you'll come across crumbling remnant of pavement along the trail.

From the Hamilton Ridge Trail, take a right onto the Pioneer Trail. The trail briefly flattens out and you may spot remnants of old farmhouse buildings and structures such as stone fences and old lime kilns. This is a particularly special opportunity to observe the active reclamation of farm fields by the forests from which they were originally cleared. You may also spot views of the Delaware River through the trees.

At about 4.5 miles, the Pioneer Trail starts to climb with a couple steeper sections back up to its junction with the Hamilton Ridge Trail. This section will be the most strenuous part of the run so be sure to save some energy for the run back up.

Take a left back onto the Hamilton Ridge Trail and trace your steps back down to the Orchard Trail: Millbrook Village to Hamilton Ridge Trail Connector and back to your car. If you have some additional time, stop by the Millbrook Historic Village - on summer weekends several of the buildings are open to the public.

Flora & Fauna

Eastern hardwood forests are predominant in this area. Keep your eyes peeled for chestnut, white oak, and northern red oak along the trail. Mountain laurel has also been seen in this area from time to time.

History & Background

You may spot remnants of old farmsteads, overgrown fields, stone fences, and old lime kilns along this trail, reminding visitors of the rich pastoral history of the park.

Run this trail?

We need help with the following missing trail information:

Need to Know, Runner Notes

Is something wrong? Let us know. Have photos to share? Help fellow runners know what's here.

Contacts

Rate This Featured Run

Rate Quality


   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Run

Check In

Check-Ins

none

Trail Ratings

  3.5 from 2 votes

#3683

Overall
  3.5 from 2 votes
5 Star
0%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
50%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Featured Run Rankings

#36

in New Jersey

#3,683

Overall
23 Views Last Month
812 Since Jul 7, 2016
Intermediate

0%
50%
0%
50%
0%
0%

Photos

Moss & Rock & Trunk
Dec 7, 2017 near Hardwick, NJ

0 Comments

Trail Run Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Running