Many outdoor enthusiasts regard Pine Barrens canoeing or kayaking in the Pine Barrens as one of the best ways to experience the Pine lands up-close. Here is information on how to go about it.
Where to find the New Jersey Pine Barrens?
Imagine a triangle between New York City, Philadelphia, and Atlantic City with a million-acre chunk of arid pine forests, cedar swamps, and twisty little rivers right in the middle. It’s a place called the New Jersey Pine Barrens, also known as the Pine lands, where you can paddle for two days and not see a single house.
The scenery is gorgeous - huge pines, cedars and oaks; birds singing; the clear brownish red cedar water of the river often times, the only sign of humanity in this vast forest as you quietly glide through the Pines.
A number of privately owned canoe/kayak rental agencies or "liveries," are located throughout the area, offering trips down such rivers as the Mullica, Batsto, Oswego, the Wading, and Cedar Creek.
A trip down one of these Pine lands waterways can last from 1 to 9 hours, depending on the route you choose and the river conditions. Some liveries offer overnight trips. Most of them are open from May to November.
Mullica River (at Crowley's Landing)
39° 34' 41.2464" N, 74° 34' 11.1432" W
No Fees. Excellent conditions
Parking is excellent. Launch Area Surface
Rest rooms available
Batsto River Rd,
Hammonton, NJ 08037,
Latitude: 39.644861 Longitude: -74.652034
This is the main take out for downriver trips on the Batsto river. Launch site is half way up the lake. The Batsto River has a very gentle flow and the best average water level of the pine barren rivers. This is an excellent up-river paddle.
Wading River - Lower (at Beaver Branch)
Off County Route 679
New Gretna , NJ
39° 37' 12.9144" N, 74° 27' 24.102" W
Limited dirt parking. Launch Area Surface: Sand
No rest room facilities
Wading River - Hawkins Bridge Put-in
Off Hawkins Bridge Road
(N39 42.831 W74 33.916)
Directions: Garden State Parkway North to 50 exits to Rt 9 drive to stop light in New Gretna, make a left on Maple Ave turns into rt 679 follow total of about 6.5 miles to Bodine field entrance another two miles to merge with Rt 563, left turn for evans bridge, right/straight about 3/4 mile to godfrey bridge campground entrance. From 206 east on rt 30 to rt 542, about 11 miles to rt 563 about 4.5 miles to Evan Bridge parking just over bridge on right.
Access to launch area requires a drive down a dirt road about 2.5 miles
Wading River - Pull outs
39°41'23.22″N, 74°32'45.77″W (3 miles from Hawkins)
39°40'29.98″N, 74°32'26.49″W(6 miles from Hawkins)
39°39'14.09″N, 74°31'29.20″W (9 1/2 miles from Hawkins)
39°39'2.32″N, 74°31'7.70″W (10 miles from Hawkins)
Cedar Creek Campground Canoe and Kayak Rentals
1052 US Highway 9
Bayville, NJ 08721
They offer Kayak & Canoe rentals from their campground. They take you up stream to one of 3 locations. And at the end of day on Cedar Creek, there's no waiting around in cold, wet clothes as the sun sets for a pickup. Just paddle right down river to the abandoned rail bridge and pull your boats out there. You'll arrive steps away from our campground.
Cedar Creek: From its headwaters in Greenwood Forest Management Area to its mouth at Barnegat Bay, Cedar Creek provides the water required for cranberry culture and supplies a pure source of water for wildlife. Adjacent bogs and uplands provide examples of plants characteristic to the Pine Barrens. Habitats of this waterway, typical to the Pine Barrens, include Atlantic white cedar swamps, bogs (including cranberry bogs), pine and oak forests, and coastal salt marshes. Throughout this beautiful watershed, you will find wildlife and unique plant species.
Wading Pines Camping Resort
85 Godfrey Bridge Road
Chatsworth, New Jersey 08019
Located right on the Wading River, Their wooded sites accommodate every style of camping, from tent sites to spacious pull-thrus with hookups which include everything from 50-amp electric through free cable TV!
For non-campers, they also have a variety of 16 rental cabins, many with waterfront locations. Paddle downstream to one of the many secluded picnic spots along the riverbanks. If you prefer to stay "closer to home", you can picnic at their private island in the river.
Canoe & Kayak rentals are available along with a choice or trips lasting from one to five hours.