The brisk blue waters
of Round Valley Reservoir attract swimmers, boaters, fishermen,
picnickers and campers to its scenic shore. The Round Valley
Reservoir swimming area was created by the construction of
an earth dam across a narrow waterway on the west side of
the reservoir, separating it from the main part of the reservoir.
The reservoir covers over 2,000 acres and is approximately
180 feet deep, the deepest lake in New Jersey. It has a water
capacity of 55 billion gallons. The reservoir is stocked with
Round Valley is one of the few parks that
offers wilderness camping. The campsites on the eastern side
of the reservoir are accessible only by hiking or boating.
The campers' parking lot is three miles away from the nearest
site, reachable by a steep and rugged trail. Cross-country
skiers and sledding enthusiasts congregate at Round Valley
in the winter months.
Keep Your Recreation Area Clean
Through the Carry-In/Carry-Out Program you can help us keep the parks clean and beautiful by carrying out the trash you carry in. Please bring a biodegradable bag with you when visiting to take your trash home. Thank you for your cooperation and remember to recycle.
TRAIL ADVISORY - Cushetunk Trail, Round Valley Recreation Area
Due to dam construction, the final 1.5 miles of the Cushetunk Trail (red) is closed until further notice.
When hiking Cushetunk Trail, you must turn around or utilize the Campground Trail (yellow) at the point shown on the map below.
November - February: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
March: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
April 1 through the Friday before Memorial Day Weekend: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Monday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The Tuesday after Labor Day through September 30: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
October: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
November - March: Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April - October: Daily 8 a.m. to 4:30
Due to variable water levels at Round Valley Reservoir, larger boats may experience difficulty accessing the wilderness campsites. Please plan accordingly. Learn more about Round Valley Reservoir water levels from the New Jersey Water Supply Authority: http://www.njwsa.org/raritan-operations-data.html
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There are three marked trails at Round Valley:
the Cushetunk Trail, which accesses the campsites, the Pine
Tree Trail and the Family Hiking and Biking Trail. All trails
are accessed from the South Parking Lot within the Day-use
Area. Trails are opened year-round. Visitors should plan their
trail activities so that they will be out of the park by closing
and are reminded to stay on the path. Wandering off causes
erosion, damage to vegetation and may, in some areas, result
in trespassing onto private property. Fires are not permitted
along the trails. Pets must be leashed at all times, and owners
are responsible for picking up after their pets. Drinking
water is available along the lower service road located in
The nine-mile Cushetunk Trail and the three-mile
lower service road are multi-use trails that pass through
open and heavily wooded areas. The Cushetunk trail surface
is rugged, rocky and steep in places which makes it more suitable
for experienced hikers, mountain bikers, and horseback riders.
Users must follow the same trail back as it ends at the Water
Supply Authority's Restricted Area and therefore, has no outlet.
The Pine Tree Trail is approximately a one
mile loop and the Family Hiking and Biking Trail is 1/2 mile
loop. They pass through pinewoods and are ideal for young
children, birdwatchers, and seniors. The Pine Tree Trail connects
the day-use area with Division of Fish and Wildlife property.
There is a fourth unmarked water trail that
is approximately 1 1/2 miles. You can access it from the campers
boat launch area.
There are no trails that completely circle
Day use trail visitors are not allowed entry into the park once it is filled to capacity.
Be aware of the park hours, so that you
may plan your hiking or biking trip accordingly. Please be
sure to be out of the park before it closes.
Campers drinking water is available near site 8 and 78. All other wells and spigots are closed. Wells do get tested for safe drinking water per the NJ Health Department Regulations.
Alcohol is prohibited.
A non-refundable service fee of $5.00 will be charged to the customer for each reservation.
Changes to the reservation that occur prior to the Start/Check in date will incur a non refundable fee of $5.00.
Changes made after the start/check-in date will be chargerd a service fee according to the following:
If the total fee is greater then or equal to $50.00 then a fee of $5.00 will be charged.
If the total fee is less then $50.00 then the fee of $2.00 will be charge
Campers must check-in at the park office by 4:00 p.m
Pet Friendly Campsites please click here for details on sites that are designated Pet Friendly, license and innoculation paperwork requirements and additional cost. Every campsite is a Pet friendly site.
Wilderness: Wilderness family campsites 85 wilderness
tent sites with fire rings (no trailers and no vehicle access),
drinking water and pit toilets are within walking distance. Access
to campsites by boat, canoe, or backpacking. Three-to six-mile
hike from parking lot and from most facilities including swimming
area. Each family site accommodates up to 6 people. Open April
1 to October 31. Fee: NJ Resident
$17 per night;
Non Resident $22 per night.
Group wilderness campsites:
Eight group wilderness sites with fire rings. Running water
and pit toilets are within walking distance. Each group site
accommodates up to 25 people. Open April 1 through October 31. Fee: New Jersey Resident $50 per night; Non Resident $100 per night.
A Special Use Permit is utilized to accommodate a specific activity or event being conducted over a short duration. There are two types of special use permits: Non-Commercial and Commercial and fees are based on NJ residency and Non-residents. A completed application must be submitted to the park/forest area where the activity or event is being held at least 90 days prior to the event. If the special use or event is extremely large or complex, at least one-year’s prior notice is recommended.
There are 19 species of fish inhabiting Round
Valley Reservoir, including largemouth and smallmouth bass.
Rainbow and brown trout are stocked annually and lake trout
are abundant. The Division
of Fish and Wildlife manages the reservoir as a trophy
lake. Anglers must follow the posted special fishing regulations
that apply. Fishing is subject to New Jersey Division of Fish
and Wildlife regulations. Fishing is prohibited in the swimming
area and a valid NJ fishing license is required.
The Park staff offer a variety of historical and natural interpretive programs throughout the year. Contact the park office for a schedule of programs and to register. Program fees may apply.
There are three picnic areas within the recreation
area; two are located on tree-shaded grassy spots at each
end of the beach, and the third is on a hill overlooking the
reservoir and park. At each picnic area the visitor will find
tables and grills, restrooms, and playgrounds. Alcoholic beverages
A public boat launch is located north of
the day use area, which is regulated by the New Jersey Division
of Fish and Wildlife. Sailboats, canoes, kayaks, motor boats
(up to 10 horsepower) and three chambered inflatable vessels
are permitted on the reservoir and must be registered through
Motor Vehicle if over 12 feet in length. NJ Boating Rules
& Regulations pertain to Round Valley Reservoir at all
times. Each person must have on a wearable Coast Guard approved
Personal Flotation Device (PFD). Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
A Boat Ramp Maintenance Permit must be obtained through
the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife to access the
reservoir at the public boat launch, or a copy of your fishing,
hunting or trapping license must be placed on the dash board
of your vehicle.
Closed for season.
Swimming is permitted at Round Valley in
the designated swimming area while lifeguards are on duty. Please check our swimming schedule prior to your visit. Swimming is not allowed in the
main reservoir. Visitors will find a beach complex containing
changing areas, restrooms, showers, a first-aid station, and
a concession building where food and beach supplies are available
for purchase. Grilling is prohibited along the beachfront.
There are two playgrounds and volleyball nets on the beachfront.
Inner tubes, rafts and other flotation devices are not permitted
in the swimming area.Only Coast Guard approved life jackets are permitted. Pets are prohibited on the beach.
Water clarity and rich aquatic life make
Round Valley Reservoir one of the best freshwater lakes in
New Jersey for scuba and skin diving. Diving is permitted
from April 1st through October 31st depending on water conditions.
Scuba divers must be certified. All divers are required to
register at the area office, have a dive buddy, inflatable
vest and a dive flag. Divers must check-in prior to, and checkout
after, each dive. In April, May and October Scuba and Skin Diving hours are 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and from Memorial Day to September 30, the hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
All Divers must have a valid Photo ID in order for them to be able to dive.
Scuba and Skin Diving visitors are not allowed entry into the park once it is filled to capacity.