Projects to Enhance the Future Trail Conference Headquarters

This November, as the fall weather rolled in and leaves changed color, 10 500-ft. wells were drilled for the geothermal system that will heat and cool the energybuilding.  By circulating water through the 5,000-foot loop, the geothermal system will use the stable temperature of the earth to cool the building in the summer and warm it in the winter.   Present estimates show the geothermal system using one-third of the energy of a conventional system.

Nature Preserve

nature preserveThe Trail Conference has preserved the wetlands around its headquarters. Functional sculptures have been designed and will be installed by George Trakas, world famous environmental sculptor. Completed design drawings include bridges, nature paths, and outdoor lighting.

The preserve nature paths will feature a dramatic bridge over the Darlington Brook, and granite slabs leading through the wetlands. These slabs are from the same source as the stone work of the original building. The nature paths will have interpretive signage describing the area’s native surroundings.

A riparian restoration of 400 feet of the south bank of Darlington Brook will be accomplished by removing invasives and installing native plant species. Towards the back of the property, a wood turtle nesting area will be encouraged. Wood turtles are native to northern New Jersey and are classified by the state as threatened. The sunny banks along Darlington Brook provide an ideal nesting space for these animals. Vernal pools will also attract wood frogs, spotted salamanders, and other native reptiles and amphibians.

The preserve nature paths at the Trail Conference’s headquarters will be used as an educational tool for nature enthusiasts to learn about the diverse flora and fauna that New Jersey has to offer.

About Trail Walker

Since 1920, the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference has partnered with parks to create, protect, and promote a network of more than 2,100 miles of public trails in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan region. The Trail Conference organizes volunteer service projects that keep these trails open, safe, and enjoyable for the public. We publish maps and books that guide public use of these trails. The Trail Conference is a volunteer-driven nonprofit organization with a membership of 10,000 individuals and 100 clubs with a combined membership of 100,000 active, outdoor-loving people.
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