Autumn, 2019

Current Stories

Grass to the Glass

Many states have adopted regulations to allow consumer access to carefully produced fresh, unprocessed whole milk. New Jersey is the only state with a complete prohibition against distribution of "raw" milk according to the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund.

Hard Rain's Gonna Fall

People who tend the land have observed physical weather-related changes that affect their occupations. Some had to rethink their direction while others continue on, hoping for the best, but onward thinkers all. Here are a few of their experiences.

Park Place: Montague and High Point

One autumn day you are likely to find yourself headed to New Jersey's northernmost corner in search of fall adventure. You may be guided by way of either of two well-known parks that converge at the top of the state in the township of Montague, and although few visitors care what zip code they' re in, some exploration beyond the park borders can be quickly rewarded.

Winter Hikes

The Winter season has its own wonders that merit braving the cold. In fact there are intrepid hikers that don't take to the trails until the branches are bare, in search of vistas from ice formations to sun glistening on a freshly fallen snow.

A Straw Bale Home

The straw bale house at Genesis Farm in Frelinghuysen demonstrates the use of locally available, time-tested renewable materials to construct an energy efficient, aesthetically pleasing home. This prototype was fully permitted and approved for residential use in 2001, connected to a solar array for its electricity needs, a solar-space heating system, a composting toilet and a grey water system.

Historic Barns

One thing that most people are not aware of, not even native New Jerseyans, is that the west central part of the state has the greatest diversity of barn types perhaps in the entire North American continent. A mixture of German, Holland Dutch and English customs, and a pronounced blending of Old World craft traditions, produced a multitude of various barn constructions. More than 150 years ago, they went truly ballistic with all kinds of barn building expressions.

Up In Smoke: Warm Season Grasses

They called it "prairie coal". The abundant fuel that kept American midwestern farming families warm through the winters of the late nineteenth century was the tallgrass that grew wild all around them across the plains, twisted into bundles and burned in rudimentary household stoves. Sometimes it was the digested dried dung of grass-eating buffalo or cattle, or straw harvested from the farmer's field, all steady reliable sources of heat-yielding, combustible, carbon-rich biofuel.

Women in New Jersey Agriculture

Women make up twenty-two percent of New Jersey's 15,936-plus farmers, and their rate is steadily increasing. They come with ideals and energy to make the world a better place. They earn a living being outdoors doing what they love, and they come to educate. They all come with grit, knowledge and spirit.

Core Values

Many, many stories adorn the history of the Highlands. But what about the future? What are the significant challenges ahead for our cherished home? That question has an easy answer: climate change.

Steep Devotion

Whatever your plans in the great outdoors, make hiking in the Delaware Water Gap part of your adventure. The Gap offers trails for all hikers from novice to expert. Come with a sense of wonder, a willingness to explore, and you may find a trail blazed just for you.

White Lake and the Vaas House

The property, acquired through the state Green Acres Program is enjoyed immensely by fishermen and outdoor enthusiasts. Beyond the crystal clear water and enchanting scenery, there is a story worth knowing.

Winter Bird Watching

Hastened by the first blanketings of snow, the shortened days of winter in the Skylands afford a chilly but unequaled opportunity to draw closer to nature and to enjoy the quiet that descends with the withdrawal of activity to the indoors. On these cold days, while local countryside vistas remain open and unshrouded by their canopy of leaves, the fields, forests, and woodlands of our region are prime for the pastime of winter birdwatching.

Appalachian Trail Short Hikes

With a little planning and a map or two, the New Jersey section can be conquered one day at a time in seven modest day-hikes.

Denville Detour: Jonathan's Woods and More!

Even today, if you needed a natural hideout--a really good one--Jonathan's Woods could work. This six hundred plus acre pocket of undeveloped property, lies not far from one of Morris County's busiest highways: Interstate Route 80. And yet the tract offers unexpected isolation. You could, as they say, get lost here.

One Track Mind

A progression of relentless efforts to commemorate New Jersey's abundant transportation heritage have found renewed focus at Boonton's Grace Lord Park, where the mighty splendor of the Rockaway River gorge traces a forgotten industrial past.

Tibetan Buddhist Learning Center

A long gravel path leads the way to the Tibetan Buddhist learning center in rural Washington Township.

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