|Jackson Road, Buena Vista Township, NJ
Phone: (856) 629-0090
NJ Department of Environmental Protection
It is a WMA, so it’s WILD! See information elsewhere in this brochure. Open daily from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. The WMA borders are irregular and interspersed with private property. Watch for the white/green Fish and Wildlife signs to avoid trespassing. Wear orange or other bright colors for safety during hunting seasons.
Exit Michael Debbi Park and turn Left onto Cedar Avenue. After 0.9 miles, turn Right onto Prep Street, then turn Left at the stop sign onto Main Avenue. After 1.6 miles, Main Avenue becomes Pancoast Mill Road. After 2.3 miles, turn Right onto Route 54/Blue Anchor Road. After 3.4 miles, turn Left onto Jackson Road. Make the first Right onto Cains Mill Road. After 1.3 miles turn Left onto Malaga Road. After 1.3 miles, turn Left onto Jackson Road, then Right into the parking area at Cedar Lake.
DIRECTIONS FROM NEAREST HIGHWAY: From the intersection of Route 322 and Route 54 in Folsom, continue West on Route 322/Black Horse Pike. After 1.6 miles, turn Left at the traffic light onto Cains Mill Road. After 0.7 miles, turn Right on Malaga Road. After 1.3 miles, turn Left onto Jackson Road, then Right into the parking area at Cedar Lake. Map
|Cedar Lake is a beautiful natural lake surrounded by mixed forest and swamp areas. Aquatic vegetation in the lake supports a healthy community of turtles, fish, amphibians, and insects. A few sandy trails traverse the classic Pine Barrens woods and offer several vantage points around the lake. This is an excellent place to explore by canoe or kayak.
Be sure to walk the trail 0.2 miles North of the dam on the left side of Jackson Road, which crosses a dike to the hidden “back” part of the lake where Bald Eagles have been spotted, especially in winter.
Winter residents such as Dark-eyed Junco, White throated Sparrow, Blue Jay, Cardinal, Carolina Chickadee and Tufted Titmouse fill the winter woods with sound. Scan the treeline for Bald Eagle, Red-tailed and the occasional Red-shouldered Hawks. Look for whitewash and pellets on the forest floor– signs of resident Barred Owls, which favor wet woodlands. Tracks in the mud or sand give away the presence of mammals such as raccoon, white-tailed deer, gray fox, and coyote. Great Blue Herons stalk prey in the reeds
Migrants, especially wood warblers and other songbirds are arriving. Listen for Pine, Blue-winged, Blackpoll and Black-and-white Warblers among others. Amphibians such as Spring Peeper and Pine Barrens treefrog add their voices to the springtime chorus. Watch for river otter and muskrat in the lake. Green Heron is a regular visitor. Fishing picks up in mid-April. Pickerel, largemouth bass and bluegill make up the catch. - Insect repellent is recommended.
Nesting birds include Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Eastern Wood Pewee and White-eyed Vireo. Red-bellied and painted turtles pile onto sunken logs to bask. Snapping turtles wander the sandy banks and trails in search of nesting sites. Spotted turtles are present as well, but are more elusive. Dragonflies and damselflies are abundant and include species such as green darner, slaty skimmer, Eastern pondhawk, common whitetail and familiar bluet. Bladderworts and Spatterdock add spots of yellow to the lake surface. Laurels, azaleas and sweet pepper bush bloom in the woods.
Native cranberries are fruiting along the lake edges. Migrants such as Baltimore Oriole, Cedar Waxwing, Hermit Thrush and Red-eyed Vireo are moving through. Cooper’s and Sharp-shinned Hawks stop around the lake to hunt. Goldenrods and asters are blooming. Maples and sassafras ignite the understory with red and orange leaves.