Hunterdon County, NJ | Department of Planning, Economic Development and Land Use |JUGTOWN MOUNTAIN PRESERVE















Phone: 908-782-1158 * Fax: 908-806-4057


Hoffman Park - Guide and Trail Map
Jugtown Mine (circa. 1943)
(Courtesy of the Hunterdon County Democrat)


Jugtown MountainThis 262-acre nature preserve is located on the ridge of the Musconetcong Mountain near West Portal. Jugtown traces its name to the rock ledges where moonshiners hid their jugs to avoid government authorities during Prohibition. This site, known as Swayze Mine after landowner William Swayze, was one of the 41 known mines in the county in the 1800s, and one of the main producers of agnetite ore. Operating from 1868 until 1889 under the direction of the West End Iron Company, the mine yielded 16,000 tons of ore a year and employed 380 immigrant workers at its peak.

The deepest shaft had a depth of 75 feet and was reached by a tramway. The mine was briefly reopened for four years in 1939 by West Portal Mines, Inc. They excavated an estimated 253,000 tons of ore annually and employed 250 men. Today, remnants of ore dumps, rock pits, and concrete structure foundations are still visible. The county acquired the preserve in 2001.

HABITAT The forest canopy of Jugtown Mountain is dominated by red oaks and tulip trees. The acorns provide food for squirrels, turkeys, and
other wildlife. The understory consists of sassafras trees and spicebush.

Vernal pools created from past mining activity exist throughout the park and provide an important habitat for amphibians. These pools are
bodies of water that dry up in the summer and fall. They provide a refuge for amphibian larvae to develop to their adult form without the predation of fish. Spotted Salamanders and Wood Frogs are examples of species identified within the preserve.

Stone walls and rocky terrain dot the landscape of the preserve. These areas provide shelter to rodents as well as the snakes that prey on them. Jugtown provides a suitable habitat for snakes to create hibernation dens for the winter season.

RECREATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES Jugtown Mountain offers hiking opportunities of moderate difficulty. The main trail loops through the woods and along a rocky slope, exposing scenic views of the mountains. Visitors can also explore remnants of past mining operations. Mountain biking and horseback riding are not permitted here.

HUNTING In order to control the population of deer on park property, hunting is permitted. Hunters must obtain a special permit issued by the Division to hunt at the park. Visitors during hunting season are strongly encouraged to wear blaze orange or confine visits to Sundays.. See additional information on the Hunterdon County Park System's Controlled Hunting Program.

Acreage 232
Meeting Room NO
Mountain Biking NO
Campsites NO
Canoe Access NO
Cross County Skiing NO
Fishing NO
Fitness Trail NO
Gardens NO
Hiking/Nature Trails YES
Horseshoe Court NO
Horse Trails NO
Hunting YES
Information Boards YES
Nature Study YES
Picnic Pavilions NO
Picnic Sites YES
Playground NO
Restrooms NO
Scenic Vistas YES
Sledding Area NO
Soccer & Baseball/Softball Fields NO
Visitor Center NO
Gazebo NO
Parking YES
Reservable Facility NO

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The Jugtown Mountain Preserve is located at 408 Mine Road, Asbury 08802 (Bethlehem Township). The park is open from sunrise to sunset. There are no restroom facilities available.


Directions from the Clinton Area Take Route 78 west to exit 11. Proceed on Route 173 west for about 2 miles. Turn right onto Mine Road. The entrance to the park is on the left just beyond the Bethlehem Township Building.

Directions from the Hampton Area Take Route 635 (also known as Charlestown Road) south to Mine Road. Turn right onto Mine Road and proceed for about 2 1/2 miles. The entrance to the park is on the right.

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The Highlands Trail extends 150 miles from Storm King Mountain on the Hudson River in New York south to Riegelsville on the Delaware River in New Jersey. It is a combination of established trails, new trails, and road walking. Blazed with teal-colored diamonds, the trail displays the scenic and natural beauty of the Highlands Region. A section of the trail lies within Jugtown Mountain Preserve, and connects the park with Tower Hill Reserve. For more on the Highlands Trail, visit the New York - New Jersey Trail Conference’s website,

Trail Guides are set up with the brochure on one side, and the map on the other.  The brochure should be printed on legal size page, and the map can be printed on standard 8 ½ x 11” paper. 

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It is the policy of the County to provide reasonable accommodations to persons with disabilities upon advance notice of need. Persons  requiring accommodations should make a request at least two weeks prior to program attendance.

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PHYSICAL ADDRESS: Hunterdon County Arboretum, 1020 Highway 31, Lebanon, NJ 08833       MAILING ADDRESS: P.O. Box 2900, Flemington, NJ 08822
PHONE: 908-782-1158       EMAIL:

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