Since leaving my home state four years ago, I've put up with a lot of jokes. Yes, we have a lot of highways and reality television shows. And actually yes, I have met Tony Soprano. (James Gandolfini visited my middle school once.) But there's a lot more to New Jersey that is hidden to those who never stop to really look around.
Yesterday, I took a hike through the Apshawa Perserve, which is located in West Milford, NJ. From the car lot, it is a short and serene romp to the Butler Reservoir. With a good friend and a borrowed dog, this was the perfect place to get away from the noise-- a very good place for some much needed reflection.
New Jersey isn't known for any mountains, so the trail remains relatively flat.
There's nothing like the refreshing smell of pine along the way to rejuvenate.
This goofball named Stanley was the first one to find the lake.
This other goofball followed shortly.
The most stunning part of this location was the cover of lily pads and water lillies.
It was fascinating to observe how lillies flowers grow. Beneath the surface you can see one spiraling up from the mud, just about to bloom.
Lots of love and a big thank you to Lauren and Stanley for joining me on this little adventure at home.