Looking for a unique and easy hike? Maybe you are trying to find a coastal trail where you can learn about our habitat here at the Jersey Shore? Well I think I have found “both”

This trail was a surprise to me and I live very close to the site. It’s a short hike, round trip about 3/4 mile, but the pavilion is well worth the short walk. It's very scenic and relaxing out there in the marsh. The trail is open to the public during daylight hours. Dogs must be on a leash and be cleaned up after.

The trail, according to the presentation on site at the Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve in Little Egg Harbor, is dedicated to Fred and Judy Grassle, internationally renowned marine scientists. You can learn more about the Grassles when you visit the trail.

The trail is short but it’s well-marked and along the route you can learn about the marsh lands here in Southern Ocean County. There is also “kids corner” tidbits to learn from as well. These learning stations are set-up at various points along the trail, so stop and take a few moments to learn as you explore.

When you get halfway on your journey you will end up on the pavilion, which extends into the water in the marsh. On the pavilion you can find a sitting area, binocular station to get a bird's-eye view into the marsh and a weather station. After you spend time relaxing out on the pavilion, make your way back through the trail and to your vehicle.

I was pleasantly surprised by the trail. I knew the pavilion was built but I didn't know the trail experience was there to enjoy — so you learn something new every day and I hope you get a chance to enjoy and learn about our habitat here in Southern Ocean County.

Grassle Marsh Trail

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