For those looking to do a scenic and semi-challenging winter hike, one worthwhile option is heading to the Delaware Water Gap in New Jersey/Pennsylvania and trekking to Mount Tammany. At 1,526 feet tall, the mountain sits on the New Jersey side of the Delaware Water Gap, across from Mount Minsi on the Pennsylvania side. You can access the trail head from Interstate 80, with trail maps available in the parking lot.
Hikers have a few choices on how to reach the summit, where you’ll be rewarded with aerial views of the Delaware River Gap, Mount Minsi and beyond. There are two trails, the Blue Trail and Red Dot Trail, which you can combine to do a loop trek or simply stick to the same path for an in-out trek. My companion and I chose to head up the Blue Trail, which runs along a portion of the Appalachian Trail and the crystal waters of the Dunnfield Creek before a slow and steady uphill ascent. We then opted for the The the steep Red Dot Trail, perfect for those who want a challenge, on the way down. Note that in winter the trails tend to get icy, meaning you’ll need to do a bit of scrambling and get creative on how to ascend and descend. That being said, in winter the white-covered woodland trail immerses you in a serene environment as you make your way farther and farther into the clouds.
For a better idea of the experience, check out the photos below which showcase the Blue Trail trek up the mountain. All photos were taken with a Nikon D5100 aside for the last two, which I had to use my iPhone 4s for due to me forgetting to charge my DSLR battery the night before (doh!).