Ocean County Highpoint Trip Report

Date: February 20, 2005
Author: Dan Case

five areas on three hills near Archers Corner (230+ ft)

From Arneys Mount, the Burlington County HP, follow Arneys Mount Road two miles or so north to County Road 537. Follow east several miles to County Road 528, Jacobstown-New Egypt Road. Follow a mile or so into Ocean County, then through New Egypt, then on into the intersection with 539 and North Stump Tavern Road to the hill with three bumps.

If you are, as most New Jerseyites are, mainly familiar with Ocean County from the coastal and barrier- island areas that give the county its name and much of its economy, you won't recognize this corner as being part of Ocean County -- the sandy, piney, Florida-like qualities of the landscape are for the most part not present and it looks and feels more like the adjacent areas of Burlington County.

North Stump Tavern Road areas

As Mike Schwartz has written, the highest ground up here, the sandy bump visible from the parking spot on the sand road, seems to have clearly been disturbed in the last few decades. However, it looks better and is also more obvious than the areas to the east, heavily overgrown and hard to distinguish as three separate bumps. Indeed, after the first one, the land clearly starts to descend. I honestly might say you're better off with the sandy bump whatever GPS says. We met some people up here on horseback who assured us that the entire parcel, despite encroaching development nearby, is public and probably not likely to be built on.

Hemlock Drive area ("Tick Hill")

As Mike wrote, this area is now a wood lot with new housing on both sides so its continuing status remains uncertain. Park along the woods and look for a hacked branch marking the beginning of a rough path that winds up through the mountain laurel to the summit, crossing a posted property line as it does so. Several candidates exist for high ground at summit. The best two have split trees on them. Take note of the nearby clearing which the path slightly crosses at one point and the tree stands visible in various states of repair nearby. Obviously you would want to be careful hiking here during NJ hunting season in early December.

Tower Road house

We rang the doorbell and met the DiMaios, the owners of the house on the highpoint. They seem fairly agreeable but they do have some pretty big dogs so I would check to see if they're home. This is a great site with views in many directions -- they say on clear nights you can easily see Freehold, a good distance to the northeast. Highest ground on the property, by their reckoning and mine, is in back corner of yard near the targets.