|Creek Road, Delanco, NJ |
Phone: (609) 265-5858
Burlington County Park System
Open daily from 8 a.m. to dusk.
Exit Rancocas Nature Center and turn Left on Rancocas-Mount Holly Road. After 3.7 miles, Rancocas Road becomes Beverly Rancocas Road. After 2.4 miles, turn Left on Route 130 South, Burlington Pike. Take the first Right onto Creek Road. Proceed straight through the light. The entrance for Pennington Park will be 0.5 miles on your Left.
DIRECTIONS FROM NEAREST HIGHWAY: From I-295, take exit 45B toward Rancocas Avenue. After 4.5 miles, turn Left on Route 130. After 0.3 miles, turn Right toward Creek Road. Proceed straight on Creek Road after the traffic light. The park entrance is 0.5 miles on the Left. Map
PENNINGTON PARK WILL BE CLOSED FOR IMPROVEMENTS IN 2010, BUT RANCOCAS GREENWAY IS STILL ACCESSIBLE THROUGH NEWTON’S LANDING BOULEVARD -- FROM THE ENTRANCE TO PENNINGTON PARK, PROCEED ANOTHER 0.5 MILES UP CREEK ROAD, AND TURN LEFT AT THE MINI LIGHTHOUSE ONTO NEWTON’S LANDING BOULEVARD. PARK IN THE CIRCLE, AND FOLLOW THE GRAVEL TRAIL TOWARD THE CREEK
There are multiple benches and pavilions that provide nice views of the park. The best vantage point is the large gazebo overlook at the highest point in the park, which provides a wonderful view of the Rancocas Creek at canopy level.
|Five-lined Skink||Tony Geiger
||Pennington Park is located along a scenic stretch of the Rancocas Creek, just upstream from its confluence with the Delaware River. It is a popular destination in spring and summer time because of its large open fields and family-friendly atmosphere. The park offers well-defined, easy-to-walk trails with and benches, blinds and overlooks from which to view the neighborhood wildlife in various habitats such as forest, meadow and tidal wetlands. For the more adventurous, a trail spurs from the Northwest corner of the park and follows Rancocas Creek for another 0.9 miles, all the way to the Riverline Rancocas Station. This area is known as Rancocas Greenway and makes for a great hike any time of year.
The walk along Rancocas Greenway on a spring morning can be quite rewarding with a diversity of songbirds and blooming wildflowers.
Cottontail rabbits scamper across the fields, ever wary of the Red-tailed Hawks and red foxes that pursue them. Great Blue Heron, Canada Goose, Black Duck, Mallard and Ring-necked Duck can be found on the creek, as well as the occasional Belted Kingfisher. This is a good time to walk the Rancocas Greenway, when the leaves are gone and the creek is most visible. Look for Bald Eagles perched in the treeline and Fox Sparrows in the shrubs, mixing with Juncos, White-throated Sparrows and Song Sparrows. Mockingbirds and Blue Jays frequent the retention basins and shrubs surrounding them.
Great-crested Flycatcher and Eastern Kingbird arrive, among a multitude of spring migrants. Look carefully along field edges for Indigo Bunting, Blue Grosbeak, Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Orchard Oriole. These species and others will become more abundant as the meadows mature in upcoming years. Check mowed lawns and gravelly areas for Killdeer. Yellowlegs and Spotted Sandpipers may be present on the mud flats at low tide.
Tree Swallows zip through the fields, snagging insects in flight. Resident birds include Carolina Wren, Red-winged Blackbird and Gray Catbird. Butterflies are active amidst wildflowers and include monarch, orange sulfur, cabbage white, Eastern tailed blue, and tiger swallowtail. Dragonflies can be found in fields near the creek. Scan open grassy areas for groundhog. Look in wood piles and sandy areas for the tiny, snake-like, five-lined skink, which often gives itself away with its twitching, bright blue tail.
Migrating raptors include Sharp-shinned and Red-tailed Hawk, Turkey Vulture, American Kestrel and Bald Eagle. Fall colors peak in October, with meadows turning hues of golden brown, fiery red, yellow and orange. Look for staging flocks of swallows, blackbirds, and American Robins.