Nature Trail – Abbott Marshlands (Formerly Hamilton-Trenton Marshlands) – Bordentown, Burlington County, NJ
Distance: Just under 1.5 miles
Type: Lollipop trail
Difficulty: 4 of 10.
Update – 6/22/2020 – Map updated
Website: Friends of Abbott Marshlands
Trailheads – 40°10’17.14″N, 74°41’31.09″W
Directions: On Groveville Road between Route 206 and Route 130
Markings – red trail markers (sometimes unclear)
Map – Printable map can be found here (thanks Mary for the heads up on the new maps!)
Description: This was a fun little trail, but was definitely confusing to follow. I’ll be very specific with my directions to help you out.
You’ll start by following the paved path from the parking lot, around the baseball field, and past the dog park. You’ll be walking along the top of the bluffs, so you can catch some nice views as you walk along if you peak through the gaps in the trees. Walk until you reach the paved cul-de-sac. There won’t be any trail markers up here, just follow the directions.
We’re in the woods, yay! From here on out, follow the red trail markers. We walked this the opposite way that we are recommending (the trail would have been MUCH easier to follow that way), so all the pictures will be backwards from the directions being given. The trail is going to enter the woods and then shortly head straight down the bluff. The grade isn’t too bad, just take your time. At the bottom of the bluff, the trail will make a very sharp left and run parallel to the bluffs.
Once you hit the bottom, take a sharp left. You’ll follow this section of trail along the edge of the swamp. It’ll lead you along the rest of the way. Don NOT climb up the bluff at any point! The trail will lead along the bottom, including under several blowdowns, then up a gentle cut in the bluffs. There will be several trails up to the left, but none of them are the trail.
The last stretch of trail is one of the most confusing, which is why I sent you the direction that I did. Do NOT head left up the side trails. Stay straight and gently curve around and follow the gully up and out. You’ll go under two pretty big blown down trees and emerge by a drainage gate in front of the bathrooms.
That’s it! Overall, the hike is just a tad over a mile. We had a lot of fun with the snow, but I’m sure this trail is enjoyable anytime the mosquitoes are under control.
In the area: Bordentown is a fun, historical little town. It’s worth heading the few miles down to walk through the main streets in town and take in the little shops and historic buildings.
And since you are in Bordentown, two of my favorite shops are there – Randy Now’s Man Cave (with its assortment of great records, novelty soda, old toys, and music) and The Old Book Shop of Bordentown (which has one of the best selections of New Jersey history books anywhere). Well worth stopping into either, even if its just for a novelty soda.
Swamp and a bluff
Trail can be a bit confusing.