Description - Information provided by New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry
Absegami Natural Area (128 acres)
A self guided nature trail loops through this wetland forest, where Atlantic white cedars share the canopy with red maple and magnolia. The Pinelands white cedar swamp and surrounding oak-pine forest community make up the Absegami Natural Area.
- West Pine Plains Natural Area (3,830 acres)
This unique stunted forest ecosystem, known locally as the Pygmy Forest, is globally rare and supports an extensive forest of pine and oak trees that may obtain a canopy height of only four feet at maturity. New Jersey contains the largest acreage of this forest community type worldwide. The area also supports an endangered plant species - the broom crowberry - and numerous rare species of moths.
Recreation - Trails
Bass River State Forest has eight easy walking (non-ADA accessible) trails from 1 to 3.2 miles. The 1/2 mile self-guided Absegami Trail includes a wooden foot bridge with benches. All trails start at the second parking lot at the beach. Animals, birds and plant life of the Pine Barrens may be found. A trail brochure is available at the office, or on the portion of the Pink Trail that passes through the old Civilian Conservation Corps camp near East Greenbush Road. This guide describes the camp foundations.
This easy walking trail, well marked with pink blazes, runs for 50 miles through Bass River State Forest, Wharton State Forest and Brendan T. Byrne State Forest, crossing streams and passing through forested areas that were once bustling towns with names such as Four Mile, Butler, Martha and Washington. This portion of the Batona Trail is maintained by the NJ State Park Service, Outdoor Club of South Jersey and the Batona Hiking Club.
Alcohol is prohibited. Pets are prohibited in overnight facilities.
Campsites: 176 tent and trailer sites with fire rings and picnic tables. Flush toilets, showers and laundry facilities are within walking distance of all sites. No hook-ups provided. Each site accommodates a maximum of six campers, two vehicles (including trailers) and two tents. Trailer sanitary station is open March 1 through November 30. Campsites open all year.
Group Campsites: Six group campsites with water and pit toilets are within walking distance. Each site accommodates a maximum of 25 campers. Parking is directly on the site. Open all year.
Lean-tos: Nine handicap accessible lean-tos each with a hardwood floor and a woodburning stove. Outdoor picnic table, fire ring and grill. Flush toilets, showers, and laundry facilities are within walking distance. Located on the south shore. Accommodates a maximum of six people. Open all year.
Shelters: Six lakeside shelters with two bunk rooms, one double-deck bunk in each room, a living room with a picnic table and bench, woodburning stove and screened double door. Outdoor grill for cooking, table and benches. Flush toilets and shower facilities are nearby. Shelters are located along the north shore of Lake Absegami. No ground fires and no outside wood fires allowed. Accommodates a maximum of four people. Open April 1 through October 31.
Cabins: Six lakefront cabins with living room with double-deck bunk and fireplace; two bunk rooms with double-deck bunks; kitchen with running water, electric stove, refrigerator; bathroom with shower, toilet, and sink. Screened-in porch faces lake. Electricity. Each accommodates a maximum of six people. Cabins are located along the north shore of Lake Absegami. No ground fires and no outside wood fires allowed. Open April 1 through October 31.
For current fees: http://www.state.nj.us/dep/parksandforests/parks/bass.html
Fishing is subject to New Jersey's Fish and Wildlife Laws.
Hunting is allowed in large parts of the forest and is subject to New Jersey's Fish and Wildlife Laws.
Located near the beach are 74 picnic tables with charcoal grills, a picnic shelter, restrooms, athletic field for games and playground. Pets are permitted at the picnic area on a six foot leash. Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
A public boat launch is located north of the recreational area parking lot. Powered boats are limited to electric motors only. A rowboat concession is operated during the summer months. Coast guard approved life preservers are required.
Swimming is permitted at Bass River from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day while lifeguards are on duty. Visitors will find a beach complex containing changing area, restrooms, showers, a first-aid station and a concession building offering refreshments, novelties and beach supplies. Inner tubes, rafts and other flotation devices are not permitted in the swimming area. Pets are prohibited on the beach.
Climate - The temperatures in New Jersey vary slightly, with the southern area being the warmest. Winter weather can start by October and is in full force by November, temperatures average 20 to 40 degrees. Spring can begin in mid March and brings temperatures of 50 degrees F, by April temperatures can reach 65 degrees F. Summer weather can extend from late May to mid September, and temperatures often reach 95 degrees during this season with nighttime lows near 65 degrees. Fall weather has temperatures between 65 and 45 degrees F. Precipitation levels in New Jersey are highest from March through August.
Burlington and Ocean Counties
762 Stage Road