Explore Nature

The Office of Sustainability is pleased to present a new video series “Explore Nature” that features local wooded areas within a few miles of Princeton’s campus. Whether you're on campus or remote, we hope these videos are able to transport you to these natural areas and enjoy nature wherever you are!

Part 1: Witherspoon Woods

Named after a former president of Princeton University, Witherspoon Woods is a 40-acre patch of forest on the Princeton ridge. Highlights include meandering streams, plentiful song birds, and huge piles of diabase boulders, including one dubbed “The Devil's Cave.”

Part 2: Herrontown Woods

Once owned by the famous Princeton mathematician Oswald Veblen and wife Elizabeth Veblen, Herrontown Woods is a 142-acre tract of forest filled with spicebush and other native forest plants. Also be on the lookout for a field of diabase boulders and some old buildings, including a red barn with a secret ping pong table.

Part 3: Institute Woods

Adjacent to the famous Institute for Advanced Study, the Institute Woods are the closest set of hiking trails to Princeton's campus. Here you'll find wide, well-maintained trails, huge oak, hickory and beech trees (some of which are hundreds of years old), and some of the best birding in Central New Jersey.

Part 4: Greenway Meadows

Greenway Meadows Park is home to the Scott and Hella McVay Poetry Trail, featuring dozens of works of poetry with connections to nature. You'll also find walking paths, playgrounds, picnic areas, playing fields and public restrooms. This 55-acre tract of preserved land was once part of the estate of Robert Wood Johnson.

Map

google map with four green circles indicating natural spaces

All videos and stories by Jared Flesher.

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