When the Land Trust acquired the LaTourette Mill it also acquired about 10 acres of land, most of which once constituted the mill pond. It is located in downtown Long Valley between the Mill and Fairview Avenue. Today it is a wetlands park comprising 20+ acres with trails bordering along the South Branch of the Raritan River and connecting to Columbia Trail and nearby Patriots Path. Most people enjoying this section of Columbia Trail don’t realize that they are actually in Mill Pond Park. At the trail head on Fairview Avenue behind the Coffee Potter is the Wildflower Meadow conceived by past president Keith Hayes and now dedicated in his memory. There you will find a kiosk with information and trail maps. The Park is an important habitat for many birds, reptiles, and amphibians and remains untouched with the exception of the Helen Andrews Memorial Garden. In the spring the garden blooms full of daffodils planted in her memory and is a lovely spot to sit and meditate.
Mill Pond Park. Block 28 (1.510ac), Lots 26 (6.220ac), 47.01(.582ac) and 46.103 (15.560ac)
Location: Between the South Branch of Raritan River (East Mill Rd ) and Fairview Ave, bordered by Morris County Park property, Frazier Steel, the Enclave at Long Valley, and private homes on Fairview Ave.
Acres: 23.872 acres in natural condition.Environmentally diverse containing forest, meadow and wetlands with easy walking trails and benches.
Access: Kiosk located at the Keith Hayes Wildflower Meadow on Columbia Trail at Fairview Avenue (Behind the Coffee Potter). As Columbia Trail traverses through Mill Pond Park, there are three other trail heads; two located on the right side of the trail along the side of the Enclave at Long Valley property and the third just before you get to Frazier Steel. – NO HUNTING IS ALLOWED.
Dr. Emile DeVito, the charismatic head of Science and Stewardship at the New Jersey Conservation Foundation conducts a walking tour to identify native and invasive plant species while also pointing out the various ecological relationships present in Mill Pond Park