Known as the Garden State, New Jersey is home to over nine million residents. The fifth smallest state by area but the 11th largest by population, New Jersey is densely populated and heavily urbanized. Despite this, the state boasts nearly of 50% forest coverage and a long border with the Atlantic Ocean, known as the Jersey Shore. New Jersey is also home to many rivers, including the Delaware and Hudson rivers. Though it is lacking in what some might call “true” mountains, the state does have a few high points. But, just how tall is the highest point in New Jersey?
Here, we’ll discover the highest spot in New Jersey and find out how it compares to the elevation of the rest of the state. Then, we’ll dive deeply into what the highest point in New Jersey has to offer. By the end, you’ll be ready to check out the state’s highest peak, explore some of the local sites and activities while you’re at it.
New Jersey’s Highest Point
Rising 1,803 feet above sea level, High Point is the aptly named highest point in New Jersey. Located in the far northwestern corner of the state, High Point is only minutes from the New York and Pennsylvania borders and the Delaware River. High Point is the highest spot on the mostly forested Kittatinny Ridge. The entire ridge lies within High Point State Park, which features miles of hiking trails.
But, perhaps the most astonishing feature of the highest point in the state is the 220-foot tall stone monument at the top. Views from High Point are excellent, but visitors can also marvel at the monument—constructed to honor the state’s veterans—on their visit. All in all, High Point State Park is one of the most popular outdoor attractions in New Jersey.
How Does New Jersey’s High Point Compare?
At 1,803 feet elevation, New Jersey’s highest point comes in as the 40th highest state high point (just behind Wisconsin, and just ahead of Missouri). But, consider that the lowest elevation in the state is sea level, and the average elevation is only 250 feet. This means that High Point truly towers over much of the state, even if it doesn’t seem that high compared to the highest points in states like Alaska and California.
Getting to High Point
Yes; you can drive to the highest point in New Jersey. Or, you can hike there, utilizing one of the State Park’s many hiking trails. The site is ADA accessible, though the veteran’s monument is not. Visitors who don’t mind a few stairs (or more), can even climb to the top of the monument when it’s open (seasonal hours vary). There, you can take in the incredible views offered by the monument’s 220-foot height.
As far as driving to High Point itself, the State Park lies just south of I-84 in Pennsylvania and New York. Matamoras and Port Jervis are the closest towns; both offer amenities like hotels, food, and gas. And, for the more adventurous souls, High Point State Park actually includes segments of the Appalachian Trail. So, if you’re planning on taking on that monumental hike, be sure to stop off at High Point.
Things to Do Near High Point, New Jersey
With over 16,000 forested acres to explore, High Point State Park has plenty to offer in terms of hiking and camping. The area surrounding the highest point in New Jersey also boasts two lakes—Lake Marcia, and Steeny Kill Lake. Both offer opportunities for water recreation, picnicking, and overnight stays. Not even the snows of winter can put a damper on this outdoor wonderland; every year, thousands enjoy skiing and snowshoeing at the park.
If you want to see even more natural beauty in the area, check out Raymondskill Falls, just over the border in Pennsylvania. But if historic sites and museums are more your style, worry not. The surrounding area has much to offer, including the Grey Towers National Historic Site, and the Columns Museum of the Pike County Historical Society.
Top Five Highest Points in New Jersey
At 1,803 feet elevation, High Point dominates all the other peaks of New Jersey. But, what about the next four highest points in New Jersey? Let’s take a look!
Coming in as the second highest point in New Jersey at 1,653 feet is Sunrise Mountain. Unsurprisingly, all five of the highest peaks in the state are located within the Kittatiny Mountain formation. Mount Paradise is the third highest at 1,606 feet tall. The fourth tallest is the Warren County High Point of Kittatinny Mountain at 1,600 feet. Finally, the fifth highest peak in New Jersey is Catfish Mountain, at 1,560 feet elevation.
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- Department of State, Division of Travel and Tourism, Available here: https://visitnj.org/city/high-point-state-park
- Department of State, Division of Travel and Tourism, Available here: https://nj.gov/dep/parksandforests/parks/highpointstatepark.html