Huber Woods was one of the first of the Monmouth county parks that I hiked – this was a park I have been to a bunch of times, but not to hike. On a sunny Sunday with the afternoon free I decided to log some miles in Huber Woods. The trails here are pretty wide, dirt trails, with very minimal hills.
I started off crossing the field and hopping on the Fox Hollow trail, a very gentle, easy trail. This was pleasant to hike and headed into the woods. After a short bit, I merged onto the Valley View trail, which would encompass most of the hike. This trail gradually went down the back side of the hill, meeting up with Claypit Run, which heads off towards the Navesink River and the Claypit Creek section of Hartshorne Woods. This area of the park, though, exemplifies one of the bigger issues I’ve found in the Monmouth County park system: There are lots of unmarked trails leading off of main trails. It’s not that complicated, but if you are not careful you can get off your intended trail. Further, at trail junctions, it would help if there were better signage, and or more blazes.
I took Valley View, and my plan was to make a right on Many Log Run, which is a loop. I went by an unmarked trail/junction, and my spidey sense said to make a turn. No signs or blazes though, and I couldn’t see anything down the trail. I kept going. After making a small loop, I realized where I should have been, kept walking and made the right turn. Many Log Run had more hilly terrain and was a little more challenging. At the far western edge, you get close to the road, and can hear cars. I took Many Log Run to Meadow Ramble, and took that to Fox Hollow.
I got back to the field and could see the path back to the parking lot; however, I felt good and wanted to walk a little further. The nature loop was in front of me so I took it – a half mile jaunt on a loop with lots of samples of what you would see in the rest of the park. There were some interesting trees on the trail.
Finally, I decided I had had enough. It was back through the field and towards the parking lot.
I like the Monmouth County park System, the trails are nice, well thought out, challenging in some places, and great for an afternoon jaunt. My only wish is that there were better marking in the forms of blazes and junction signs. Unmarked trails, if they are maintained, should be added to maps.