Slateford Farm

Slateford Farm, Delaware Water Gap (9/30/2012)

Last week we hiked a stretch of the AT on Mount Minsi at and west of Tott's Gap. Today we headed to the fields below the ridge, between the mountain and the Delaware River, in an area which was formerly the Slateford Farm. We planned to do the figure-8 lollipop on the NYNJTC Kittatinny Trails Map 120 starting at the Arrow Island pull-off on Route 611. The Arrow Island trail (no more than 1 mile in length) would be the lollipop stick and the two loops, used for cross-country skiing and hiking above the river, would be the figure-8. But the western loop (labeled as "Slateford Loop" on the NYNJTC map) appeared as if it hadn't been used for much of anything since Eisenhower was President and the vegetation became so thorny and overgrown just west of Slateford Farm that we simply had to turn back.

Another map can be found here, which includes more trails and woods roads than the NYNJTC map. The path we took today is too complicated to describe here (especially with all the backtracking). Suffice it to say, if you want to hike these trails keep in mind that they are quite overgrown in places and the spot where we had to turn back is at the point on this map marked "Old Field". Hiking along the trail that passes along the southern edge of that field in a counter-clockwise direction, we simply couldn't proceed much further than the eastern end of that field without machetes! It could be that the trail beyond that point is navigable but we didn't have time to head over there from the other direction to see. We did, however, manage to find the abandoned buildings of the Slateford Farm, something we wouldn't have seen had we merely followed the NYNJTC map. It appears that there used to be a thriving historical farm which may have been abandonded some time ago. Some of the buildings have been lovingly restored and there are empty information signs in several places.

Total distance hiked was 4.7 miles of hiking, getting flummoxed, backtracking, getting more flummoxed, and exploring some spurs (including a yellow trail not on any map) in exactly 3 hours.

(Click on the thumbnail to bring up a bigger image in a pop-up window)

Mt. Tammany across the Delaware

Trailhead right behind our car [photo by Laura]

Steep climbing at the start

White-blazed Arrow Island trail

Levels off heading west

Slate and rock wall


Dry stream


Confusing blazing

Climbing off the trail by accident


Boundary wall

Leaf drop

X-country blaze

Now on eastern loop

Ridge of ...

... Mt. Minsi ...

... dwarfs Laura

X-country blaze

Slateford Farmhouse

Front of house


Empty informational sign

Abandoned farm buildings


Inside small barn

View from window

Wildflowers outside

Inside large barn

Side of barn

Close-up of barn wood

Hornet nest

Design above farmhouse front door

Another hornet nest!

Early fall foliage

Overgrown vegetation near bridge

Inside another building

Exploring path not on map

Very overgrown Slateford Loop

Heading back to more navigable part

Slateford Loop south of farm

Paved road

Operating farm and willow tree

View of Minsi

Gorgeous willow

Dan & Minsi [photo by Laura]


Nice path here


No hunting

Laura & Minsi


Great views ...

... of Mt. Minsi


[Photo by Laura]

On field edge (eastern loop)


Boundary wall

Hawk feather?

Some autumn color

Back on Arrow Island trail

Lots of leaf drop

Trail through thicket

Mine (?) on yellow trail

Cut into the mountain side

Yellow trail is not on map

Tree hopping

Mt. Tammany from a spur trail

Marbled Orb Weaver Spider was on my shoulder

Another spider on my pants

Used to be a tree-lined road

Back down

Arrow Island trail head

Mt. Tammany from parking lot

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