November 13, 2020| Recreation
By: Donna Macalle-Holly
Looking for an easy access point to the Lake Hopatcong Trail (LHT)? Hiking from Roland May Eves Mountain Inlet Sanctuary is the perfect location. It is one of 13 trails spurs that connects to the main Lake Hopatcong Trail.
Nestled on the west shore of Henderson Bay in the Borough of Hopatcong, this peaceful location, with its convenient parking lot, is the perfect spot to do some bird watching, to fish, or to watch the aquatic animals, and of course, to hike.
To access the LHT spur, from the parking lot at 401 Lakeside Ave, Andover, cross the road and head to the right. Look for the Lake Hopatcong Trail access sign, which follows a dirt road known as Isabell Avenue. This short walk to the trail head is private property, so as the sign says, please be respectful.
At the trail head, there will be three different trails markers: the Lake Hopatcong Trail (white blazes) the Highlands Trail (teal blazes) and the Mountain Inlet Loop trail (yellow blazes), which is less than a mile loop that was just recently blazed by LHF Trails Chairman Cliff Lundin and the Hopatcong Environmental Commission. Along this section, the three trails overlap before splintering off. To stay on course, always look for the white LHT trail blazes.
It’s about a half-mile walk on the LHT spur to the main trail, which ends at a ‘T’ intersection. To the left, the trail heads toward Bear Pond. To the right, the trail heads into Jefferson Township and makes a connection to the James Leach Trail, which leads to Lake Hopatcong’s Lify Island via the newly built foot bridge.
The Lake Hopatcong Trail is approximately 12 miles through Hopatcong and does not have any loops. There is parking available to access the trail from each trail spur. The trail can be viewed on any mobile device to find an exact location through the free Avenza Maps app. The geo-referenced PDF trail map can be uploaded to a Dropbox account and then imported into Avenza Maps.
Recently, I hiked the Mountain Inlet trail spur and a short section of the main trail heading towards Bear Pond with friends Jule Girman and Karen Fucito. I was scouting the area in preparation for a group hike the Lake Hopatcong Foundation is sponsoring on Black Friday, also known as #optoutside day. We were all pleasantly surprised by the diversity of the terrain—carpets of moss, colorful marshes, and bold rock formation. Karen kept saying, “it’s so beautiful back here.”
Take time to enjoy the natural beauty of the wilderness around us by taking a hike on the Lake Hopatcong Trail or by joining us on Friday, November 27 for a group hike. Find out more HERE.
"In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks." - John Muir