Turkey Swamp Park
Turkey Swamp Park is a 1,180-acre (4.78 km²) park located in Freehold Township, New Jersey on the northern fringe of the Pine Barrens. The Turkey Swamp area includes the headwaters of the extensive Manasquan, Metedeconk, and Toms River systems to the east, Millstone River to the north, and Assunpink Creek to the west. The chief recreational attraction of this park is the 17-acre (69,000 m2) lake suitable for bass, bluegill and catfish fishing, as well as canoeing and paddle boating.
The core of the park was purchased in 1963. Additional land was purchased in the 1970s and more recently to bring the park to its current configuration.
The title of the park may be considered a bit of a misnomer considering the park does not bear a swamp, nor does it act as a habitat for turkeys. Although considering that the soil is rather sandy and the water table lies slightly beneath the surface, this thus gives rise to swampy conditions at times when the surface topography dips to the water line; hence the 'swamp' title. The 'turkey' prefix, however, was adapted from the town's previous name, Turkey. The town once known as Turkey is now known as the unincorporated area of Adelphia.
The park features 8 miles (13 km) of trails, an archery range, an array of playgrounds, two soccer fields, and various picnic grounds. During the appropriate season, canoes, paddleboats, kayaks, and rowboats may be rented. During the winter season, as the massive lake freezes over, ice-skating is available for park visitors. A significant section of the park is dedicated as a seasonal campground, complete with laundry facilities, hot-water bathrooms, and RV electric & water hook-ups. It consists of 64 pull-through campsites that can accommodate both tent campers and travel trailers. Two wood "forest view" cabins are also available.
Nomoco Activity Area
A more secluded area in the park, called the Nomoco Activity Area, is also available for use by groups interested in group activities. It consists of six sites each capable of accommodating groups of up to 40 people. One of the sites, called "the Outpost" is more secluded yet, requiring a hike through the woods of 1/4 mile to reach. This area is good for groups seeking wilderness camping. In the Outpost, drinking water, for example, must be carried in, although ground water from hand pump-driven wells are available in the general area. Also, a pit toilet is available as there are no other relief facilities at the Outpost.
- The orange-blazed trail, a 1-mile-long (1.6 km) trail circumventing the lake.
- The red-blazed trail, a 1.75-mile-long (2.82 km) trail which leads into the woodsy camping area.
- The green-blazed, a 1-mile (1.6 km) trail leading to the lakefront area and bordering the red-blazed trail.
- The blue-blazed, a 0.5-mile (0.80 km) trail which guides hikers to the boathouse.
- Freehold Township Master Plan (2010), p.7-1
- U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map
- Monmouth County Park System (2009). The Directory: Volume 3. Monmouth County Board of Recreation Commissioners. p. 3.
- Turkey Swamp hiking information, accessed 3 October 2006
- Campgrounds at Turkey Swamp Park. Monmouth County Board of Recreation Commissioners. Publication #A7485. March 2008.
- Nomoco Activity Area at Turkey Swamp Park. Monmouth County Board of Recreation Commissioners. Publication #A6142. April 2006.