Hello everyone:
A brief progress update on cleaning up Hilltop demolition debris and other sanatorium leftovers

As reported back in July, the County's contractor demolished and filled the big cistern behind Well #9 on the west side of Fairview Avenue, demolished two old sanatorium outbuildings / structures, removed concrete posts and steel cable from the former kitchen parking lot, and started repairs on the old sanatorium wall that looks out over the small meadow.

Since then, the contractor has finished repairing the wall, removed the fence posts around the former tennis courts, demolished the stairs leading to the former doctor residence, demolished the old outdoor bathroom and nearby brick BBQs, and removed about 2/3 of the demolition debris piled up in the woods between the small meadow and the two green water tanks (from the former sanatorium garage). We are following up with the County to ensure that the remaining concrete and other debris (e.g., sidewalks to nowhere, fallen lampposts, partial structures, etc.) are removed and the sites re-covered to help the areas return to a natural state. It's slow work, but at least there's progress.

Thank you.



Hello Hilltoppers:

We have some good news!

Essex County is moving forward with implementing our Green Acres grant!

This includes what could be called an "upgrade" to the Reservation's western route, the one that starts at the end of Courter Lane in North Caldwell, and ends at the service road by the twin green water tanks (just north/downslope of the Highlands apartment complex).
The upgrade will first involve some clearing of dead trees, branches and brushy growth that currently impede public access, and then re-grading and resurfacing the "soft" parts of the route, which will keep it dry and rut-free going forward. The surface will be gravel, in two layers: the first to stabilize the route's base and the second to provide a smooth and firm, yet permeable walking / cycling material.
Part of the project will also involve restoring wildlife habitat to several open areas that abut the route, including invasives control and seeding of native grasses and wildflowers.
We expect the route upgrade to be completed by spring of 2017, and the habitat restoration to be completed by fall of 2018 (here we're driven by nature's schedule, not man's).

If anyone is able to assist with the western route upgrade project, please contact me? I'm stretched pretty thin, and I'm hoping some of you who use the western route will volunteer to help out. Most of the helping will simply be making sure the contractor(s) do a good job on the route clearing and resurfacing
2-3 extra pairs of sensible / practical eyes are what we need, with a willingness to spend a few minutes documenting and reporting on progress.

Thank you.



Cedar Grove
Fairview Avenue Park

Master plan excerpt
infrastructure and clean-up

Latest Photos
Courtsey of Janet M and Tony D
Click on the image to see the full detail

© 2015 Janet Markin
Submit YOUR photo
for consideration for posting on our website.

Jan 2015

Redevelopment plan Cedar Grove, NJ
The former County Hospital site between Fairview and Grove Avenues

Click here for the printable map
of the Hilltop Trails
in Portable Document Format (PDF)

Hello Hilltoppers:

Lots of things to do in the park

Thank you for your past support of the Hilltop Reservation, and of the Conservancy. We were able to accomplish many good things last year, which we couldn't have done without you.

And the work continues

To help us continue this great work, we need both your continued support and your membership dues. Over 90% of our funding for trail tools, native grass and wildflower seed, and other supplies comes from membership dues. Local residents and volunteers like yourselves provide the financial resources for us to conduct events and projects in the Hilltop, including: clean-ups, nature hikes, trail blazing, signage and wildlife habitat restoration.

Amounts for 2017 dues are:

Single membership:$20
family membership:$35

Please make your check payable to "Hilltop Conservancy" and mail it to :

Hilltop Conservancy, Inc.
c/o Theresa Trapp, Treasurer
34 Depot Street
Verona, NJ 07044

Your continued support is GREATLY appreciated and will allow us to continue our all-volunteer efforts to enjoy, care for and improve the Hilltop Reservation.
Thank you!!

Intrepretive signs

Hilltop Reservation Certified as a 'Wildlife Habitat.'

Photos from A nature hike

The Hilltop Conservancy is a partner of the NJ Invasive Species Strike Team, a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing the spread of new foreign invasive species in New Jersey. More information is at www.NJISST.org

Please report any problems on a trail to the Vice President of the conservancy

The Hilltop Conservancy officers and trustees have decided to
NOT hold regular general membership monthly meetings.

The work of the Conservancy continues and we will organize events as in past years.

Be sure to check your email box, your local paper and here for news and volunteer opportunities.
We continue to need your help and support. Indeed... now as much as ever before!

Topological map
with hot spots

Essex County New Jersey
communities of
North Caldwell,Cedar Grove
West Caldwell,Caldwell and Verona
You can learn about the Hilltop and
us in making a difference.

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         Essex County

Programs being offered
at the Essex County
Environmental Center

Birds Commonly Found at Hilltop
(without pictures smaller file)

Plant identification and information site.
Montclair Community Wildlife Habitat Project Essex Mountain Sanatorium Geocaching

email the
Executive Committee
Vice President: Geordie Smith

Treasurer: Theresa Trapp

Mission Statement

The Hilltop Conservancy, Inc. is a non-profit organization recognized by the IRS (under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code) and by the State of New Jersey as a public charity qualified to receive tax-deductible contributions. The State of New Jersey requires charities that solicit funds from the public to register with the New Jersey agency regulating charities. If you desire a copy of Hilltop Conservancy, Inc.'s financial report you may write to: Hilltop Conservancy, Inc. Treasurer@HilltopConservancy.org or because we are registered with the State of New Jersey, information filed with the attorney general concerning our charitable registration may be obtained from the attorney general of the state of New Jersey by calling (973) 504-6215. Registration with the attorney general does not imply endorsement.