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Sunday, April 11, 2010

Trail from Butler to Montville and Boonton

Butler-Montville and Boonton Trails cross over Route 23Do you recognize this overpass? Here's a hint: I took this photo from Route 23 heading North in Butler / Kinnelon, just past the Ford Dealership and right by the Butler Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealership at Cascade Way. According to Tom Kline, this overpass most likely connects Butler to the the Butler-Boonton and Butler-Montville trails. Here's what Tom wrote me after reading New Pyramid Mountain Park Trail:

I read your blog post about new trails at Pyramid Mountain.

Now here is a bit of trivia for you but I do not have back-up information to prove my claim. Just a recollection of something that my father once told me many, many years ago. But I will get to that in a minute.

There were two ancient trails that crossed Kinnelon from the 1930s and perhaps even earlier. They were the Butler-Boonton trail and the Butler-Montville trail. Now known as the white trail and the blue trail, both wind on either side of Kakeout reservoir and traverse through Pyramid Mountain. Although re-marked and perhaps called out by different colors, one ended in Boonton and the other ended in Montville. You can actually take the white trail all the way from the dam of the reservoir right past Tripod rock to the top of Pyramid Mountain and considerably beyond.

As the name implies, I believe at one point in time, these trails started in Butler. You know, like downtown Butler.

So the little bit of trivia is the one and only pedestrian walkway (bridge) that crosses Route 23 and currently located just about where the new Butler Jeep dealer is (also at the foot of Cascade Way) was constructed to insure that the trail was not broken by the highway. If you follow Cascade way up to Kakeout Road, voila, you have arrived at Bubbling Brook Road, where the trail now starts.

As I said, I don't have the documentation to back it up but perhaps the Butler Museum folks could address the issue. Alternatively, perhaps the New York New Jersey Trails Conference may have some back ground information and ancient trail description.

It is awfully odd that it is the ONLY pedestrian walkway the crosses the ENTIRE length of Route 23. I think 23 ends somewhere down in Montclair and extends all the way out to Port Jervis. If you are looking for an in the car adventure some day...check it out. High Point is always a cool place to visit also!

Thanks, Tom!

What do you think? Have you taken the Butler-Montville and Butler-Boonton Trails?
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