Hunterdon County area fall destinations
Updated: Oct 9, 2020
Recently over on my Historic Flemington instagram page, I began posting a series of photos of my favorite destinations in Hunterdon County (or very close by) for fall photography. Fall photography, in its most base definition, means colorful leaves and pretty views, and that's exactly what I focused on.
I began just over the border in the Cutalossa Valley Historic District.
While my family and I stay cooped up with our new addition, I've compiled a list of nearby destinations that you can enjoy, with fall foliage specifically in mind (that being said, the photos may not always reflect that).⠀
I’ll start with one of my favorite spots any time of the year, Cutalossa Farm in Solebury, PA. A tad north of Stockton, (or more precisely, *just* south of Lumberville, PA) this heavily wooded mini-valley (is that a geological term? certainly not) is home to beautiful historic homes, dense greenery and this oft-photographed mill.⠀
I just learned this morning that Zebulon Pike, most famously the eponym of Pike’s Peak, grew up in the valley. ⠀
Cutalossa was also home to Daniel Garber, a well-known late American landscape impressionist whose work sells for upwards of $300k these days.⠀
People still live here, so tread lightly and be kind. Lots of cyclists like the windy, hilly road too. Park on the shoulder and wander around or just do a meandering drive-by. If you've never been, a trip in mid to late October will be the perfect time to check it out.
The stretch of Rosemont-Ringoes Rd (aka 604) from the Green Sergeant Covered Bridge into Rosemont is one of my favorite short stretches of road in the fall. ⠀
From the babbling Wickecheoke and the last (!) historic covered bridge in the state up into Rosemont is only a 1.8mi stretch of pavement, but every fall I fall more in love with this beautiful part of Hunterdon. ⠀
Starting at the bridge, there are two pull offs on Upper Creek Rd to park for a few minutes and explore the creek area. I find avoiding mid day hours offer a more mystical experience, light filtering thru the colorful leaves, the creek gurgling softly beneath you and sparrows flitting about above you.⠀
Head up the hill towards Rosemont and keep your eyes peeled for the beautiful farms on the downward sloping north side of the road. ⠀
Glide into town, but don’t blink. You could miss it! Take a right to head towards my next destination (look out for that tomorrow!), go straight for one of my favorite fence/tree lines in the entire country, or head down towards the river and take a left.
Strimple's Mill is a quick 2.2 mile jog from Rosemont. It's home to a historic mill and a historic truss bridge, both of which sit over the Lockatong Creek. ⠀
The foliage gets wildly colorful here in the fall and there are a few good pull-off points, but please do be careful - people use this road regularly and it's home to private residences as well.⠀
The saw mill was built sometime around 1850 by a man named Daniel Carrel. The bridge was built in 1897 and is historically significant as an outstanding (and still standing!) example of civil engineering at the turn of the century. ⠀
Bring some non-slip shoes, put your phone on airplane mode and walk down to the creek for a few minutes of peace and quiet, and a brief glimpse into life in the countryside of Hunterdon County in the late 1800s.
Sidney Rd, which before that is Cherryville Rd, and before that Klinesville, and then way down towards the bottom of the hill in Flemington is Sand Hill Rd is the far superior way to travel to Clinton, paralleling 31 only in direction, superior in every other way (ok, maybe it takes 3 mins longer to get where you're going but we don't live in Silicon Valley so maybe you can spare 1/20th of an hour).⠀
I'll start on the northern end of the road here, overlooking Landsdown Meadows and facing east. Check your sunrise times and get there before it pops over the horizon. The trees will be backlit - as seen here - but my goodness it's a view you can't complain about.⠀
Wide shoulders make for easy parking and there's even a full-fledged parking lot for the area (just before the road meets Pittstown Rd). When I only have a little time to scoot out for photos in the early morning, this is my route, without fail. Take the turns slowly, explore the side roads and enjoy the falling leaves as you wend your way down the well-wooded car trail.
Still Sidney Rd, but now we're facing west - almost the same exact location as my previous post.
See why I want you to go here?
I've linked to a useful foliage map prediction site in my bio.
It looks like we're going to hit peak color in about two weeks so get those weekend activities on the calendar ASAP!
Head south down Sidney Rd for this winding, climbing S-curve into autumnal bliss.
Jump a bit further south down Sidney Rd and it turns into Cherryville Rd, but it stays magical.⠀
This is one of my favorite nearby places to go to. I probably drive by it 45 times/year (and I don't have a commute)!⠀
The church, the beautiful black fence, the horses and changing leaves can make for unforgettable scenery just outside of downtown Flemington.
My last pictorial missive from Sidney/Cherryville/Klinesville/Sand Hill Rd. This is the world famous @cervenkafarm, which boasts a glorious tree line that will burst with color and great local produce!
Swinging back thru town as I prepare to take you to a few other fall foliage destinations. This is one of my favorite trees in town, at the Grant Ave/Main St intersection right across from the Main Street Manor B&B.
Lambertville has tons to offer year-round, but I find their amber-hued street lamps especially endearing in the early autumn, when the leaves haven’t quite begun to show that specific shade of orange yet. It’s as if the light is egging them on, “do it like this my leafy brothers and sisters, come on, you can do it. Orange you glad you have me as a guiding light?!” 🏮
Ken Lockwood Gorge is one of the most tranquil spots in all of Hunterdon County. If it reopens this fall, I’d suggest checking it out. But please, please be respectful of the land and the folks who live there. It was shut down this summer partially due to being overrun by tourists who lacked common decency. This is not a state park and does not have trash receptacles or bathrooms; plan accordingly and pack everything out 🖤
And a quick hop over the border for some locomotion thru a leafy wonderland in downtown New Hope 🍂🚂🍂
Lower Creek Rd just north of Stockton is an absolute must-see
Leave your favorite spots in the comments and spread the local knowledge.