Department of Environmental Protection

New Jersey State Park Service

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Six Mile Run Reservoir Site Overview


BE AWARE: A call was received at the parks office from a hunter who reported seeing a large black bear at the Six Mile Run Recreation Area on September 13th not far from Skillman's Road between Route 27 and South Middlebush Road in Franklin Township. We are asking all our park users to be alert and aware when using the trail network or hunting in the area. If you spot a bear immediately notify the DEP's 24-hour, toll-free hotline at 1-877-WARN DEP (1-877-927-6337).

Work will be underway on the Six Mile Run Culvert the week of September 18th. Please be aware that this will require the closing of the mutli-use trail on both sides of the culvert between 7:00 AM - 3:00 PM. There will be no thru traffice between these hours starting MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 18TH THROUGH FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 22ND. Signage alerting the public of the closure will be posted at Griggstown and Blackwells Mills. Please avoid this section of the park while construction is underway.

Nestled in central New Jersey, Six Mile Run Reservoir Site, named for the stream that travels through the region, provides vital open space for enjoying the splendor of nature. The 3,037 acres of preserved land, once slated to be part of a reservoir, offers 13.5 miles on four marked trails that accommodate hiking, biking, birdwatching and horseback riding. Six Mile Run Reservoir Site has remained an oasis of farm fields and forests in an otherwise suburban landscape. Each trail has its own charm, allowing the visitor a chance to see an array of forest types, vast farm fields and beautiful views of Six Mile Run.

This area is administered by the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park.

In the late 1950s, it was determined that additional water supply resources were needed for the state of New Jersey. The area around the Six Mile Run creek was identified as a possible location for such a site. In a process that took place over several years in the 1960s, properties were acquired by the state for the purpose of creating an additional water resource in central New Jersey. To that end in 1970, the area was put under the jurisdiction of the N.J. Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Water Resources with the intent to develop it as a reservoir site. However, by 1993, alternative and adequate water sources had been identified and the Six Mile Run Reservoir project was shelved. No longer immediately needed, the administration of the newly-acquired properties at Six Mile Run was transferred to the Division of Parks and Forestry. The current trail systems through the former farmlands were soon created.

Today, Six Mile Run Reservoir Site provides an essential area to enjoy the outdoors with hiking, biking, horseback riding and hunting. The trail network provides visitors a glimpse into the region’s rich cultural history. The area was listed on the 1995 National Historic Register and is the largest agricultrual distric in New Jersey. Trail users can see the remains of 18th and 19th century farmhouses, Dutch-framed barns, windmills and silos that hint at the story of the early colonial settlers who inhabited the area in the 1700s, while they enjoy preserved open vistas of undeveloped land in the heart of central New Jersey. For more information call 609-924-5705 and/or click for more history of Six Mile Run.

Trail Map

Four trails provide 13.5 miles for hiking, biking and horseback riding. Be aware that the soil here is easily eroded; please do not use the trails in muddy conditions.

Park at any of these locations for access to the trails: 625 Canal Road in Somerset, Jacques Lane or 2186 Route 27 in New Brunswick (shared with NJ Knights Soccer Club.

As a multiuse trail it is important for trail users to be courteous of each other and be aware of trail etiquette.

The Jersey Off Road Bicycle Association (JORBA) is a nonprofit organization that are partners with the New Jersey State Park Service in maintaining this trail system. Founded in 1999, JORBA’s focus is to build and maintain sustainable multiuse trails, organize and encourage volunteerism and responsible trail use and advocate and foster mountain biking as a healthy, environmentally sound and sustainable activity. If you are interested in helping to maintain these trails, please visit

General Guide to the trails at Six Mile Run Reservoir Site

The New Jersey State Park Service supports the mission of the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. Both agencies endeavor to protect and manage the State's fish and wildlife to maximize their long-term biological, recreational and economic values for all New Jerseyans. Sportspersons must comply with all current NJ Fish and Wildlife regulations as noted in the current hunting digest.

For information about fishing and hunting, please refer to the NJ Fish and Wildlife website or call the main information number in Trenton at 609-292-2965.

Hunters are responsible for knowing the hunting regulations within the state park. Be sure to review maps, zone descriptions and timing restrictions prior to venturing to the site. The hunting areas may have trails open to the public during the hunting season so be aware of hikers, bikers, and horseback riders who may be utilizing the trail system.

Be advised that there is NO HUNTING PERMITTED ON SUNDAYS within lands managed by the NJ State Park Service.

NJ State Park issued permits are available for deer bowhunters to access over 2,000 acres of land within Six Mile Run Reservoir Site. There are also a limited number of firearm permits available for a limited area within the Six Mile Run Reservoir Site. Please carefully read the instructions below to apply for either a bow or firearm permit.

BE ADVISED:  Hunters MUST APPLY FOR A PARK PERMIT to hunt anywhere within Six Mile Run. Download/Print the deer hunting map for Six Mile Run by clicking the link below:


Stands are prohibited from being placed directly on Six Mile Run Reservoir property lines or in the view-shed of residents residing directly adjacent to Six Mile Run Reservoir Site.

One stand/blind permitted per hunter;
Parking Permit only needs to be displayed in Hunter Only Lots (see a map for details);
Please review the map as permissible hunting areas have changed.

BOW SEASON:  There will be NO LIMIT on the number of bow permits issued for Six Mile Run. Email, or mail, a completed legible application along with a copy of your current hunting license and government issued identification (ex driver’s license) to or via US Postal Service to:

D&R Canal State Park
145 Mapleton Road
Princeton, NJ 08540

Use the link below to download/print the bow season application:

FIREARM SEASON:  A total of 15 permits will be issued for the 2023/2024 season by a RANDOM lottery. To be considered for the lottery please submit your name with your email and/or phone to Stephanie Fox (; 609-924-5705) by September 30, 2023. If your name is selected the park will notify you and provide you with a firearm application to be completed.

Please direct any questions to Stephanie Fox at or call the park office at (609) 924-5705.

Access for Persons with Disabilities
Six Mile Run Reservoir Site facilities are not accessible for people with disabilities. Please contact the D&R Canal Park Office for alternative ADA accessible areas nearby. Text telephone (TTY) users, call the NJ Relay & CapTel Service at 711 or 1-800-852-7897 for English or 1-866-658-7714 for Spanish.

All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs)
Recreational use of ATVs is not permitted on NJ State Park Service property. This includes state parks, forests, recreation areas, golf courses, marinas, natural areas, historic sites, and preserves. Thank you for your help in protecting New Jersey’s natural and historic resources. [N.J.A.C. 7:2-3.4(d)]

State law prohibits the smoking of tobacco and use of electronic smoking (vaping) devices in all state parks, forests, historic sites, recreation areas, golf courses and marinas. [N.J.P.L.2005, c.383 (C.26:3D-56)]

Alcoholic beverages are not permitted in state parks, forests, recreation areas, golf courses, marinas, natural areas, historic sites, and preserves. [ N.J.A.C. 7:2-2.6 ]

Keep Your Park Clean and Green
Protect plants and animals and care for your parks by taking your trash with you. Whatever you carry into the park, plan on carrying it out too. It’s like crowdsourcing trash management! Bring a bag or two for trash, recycling and cleaning up after your pet. There are no trash receptacles in this park. Thank you!

No swimming.

Pets must always be on a leash no longer than six feet in length and under the control of the owner. Please clean up after your pets.

Tick Protection
Use insect repellent, wear light-colored clothing, tuck pants into socks, stay on trails, check yourself when you get home, shower and wash clothes immediately.

Be Bear Aware
Black bears are found throughout New Jersey. Do not approach or attract bears by making food available. Feeding bears is dangerous and illegal. Never run from a bear! To report an aggressive bear, call 1-877-WARN-DEP (1-877-927-6337) immediately. Please report any damage or nuisance behavior to the park office. Visit the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife at for additional information on bear safety.

Photo Gallery


Related Links

D&R Canal State Park

Park Map

Area Map


Phone Number

Physical Address
625 Canal Road
Somerset, NJ 08873

Mailing Address
D&R Canal State Park
145 Mapleton Road
Princeton, NJ 08540

Email Address

Park Hours

Gate Open daily from sunrise to sunset
Park Office Open Monday- Saturday 8:30 to 4:00.

Park Fees

Entrance Fee None

Other Related Fees
Map / Directions

GPS Coordinates
40.49644, -74.58041