Our Projects

Lopatcong Creek restoration in Warren County, NJ.

Trout Scapes will be on the Lopatcong Creek starting August 10th.  They will be working on the Lock Street section in Philipsburg. They need as many volunteers as we can possibly provide on Thursday August 19th and Friday August 20th.  Volunteers will be helping lay coir matting along the stream bank, not hard to do but takes time.


These poor banks have suffered mightily from past land use practices and invasive plants. We finish our bank and in stream work in about ten more days then Trout Unlimited volunteers will plant native trees and shrubs. We plant a diverse native herbaceous layer using seed from a local supplier.

Project progress so far (below)

Fred is our Lopatcong restoration project mascot. He walks within feet of our working excavator. He (she?) is enjoying the short term feast as fish learn new escape locations within restored waters.



Lopatcong Creek Cleanup by RVTU members
The Ridge & Valley chapter has focused on the Lopatcong Creek as its home water.  The "Lopat" as it is locally known is one of New Jersey's very few pure limestone spring creek.  As such, it has an abundant native brook trout population in its headwaters and increasing numbers of wild browns in its lower reaches.  The Lopatcong flows from Montana Mountain southwest to the Delaware River in the town/city of Phillipsburg.


Califon Island Park tree planting
Ridge & Valley and Ken Lockwood Trout Unlimited chapters, and many Califon residents planted 100 trees at Califon Island Park on Saturday October 17th. The park had lost quite a few ash trees due to the emerald ash borer. Volunteers replaced them for the next generation to enjoy for many years to come. Trees are very important as they help shade the water, filter runoff, and stabilize banks.

With so many volunteers we were done in 2 hours. Great work everybody!

Restoration of the Wild & Scenic Musconetcong River
The Ridge & Valley chapter is one of 7 NJTU chapters helping to fund the restoration of the Wild & Scenic Musconetcong River on state owned land between Asbury and Bloomsbury at a site known locally as “the A-Frame property.  The property is so named due to the state owned home there currently resided in by one of the Conservation Officers (CO).  This public water is above the Musky Trout Hatchery, the hatchery being on Warren Rod & Gun Club property.  It is roughly one third of a mile in the limestone influenced area of the river, but it lacks deep pool habitat and has several failing hand-built stone dams that are widening the river in this reach.  Restoration of the channel includes the narrowing back down of the channel and the creation of three deep pools to better hold trout.  Riffles will be enhanced to increase insect production which as we all know is trout food and food to fuel the riverine ecosystem.  

This project has been fully funded with help from 7 TU chapters in NJ, the Theodore Gordon Flyfishers, and an Embrace-A-Stream grant received by the Central Jersey chapter who is leading the project financially.  TU staffer Cole Baldino is project manager and has brought in considerable funding to the project in addition to overseeing it for Trout Unlimited.  The permit is in hand, but closures for wood turtle hibernation followed by trout stocking will mean a late June 2018 construction date.  Trout Scapes River Restoration LLC out of Bozeman, MT is the contractor for this in-stream work, with TU volunteers planting native trees and shrubs following the completion of in-stream work.  

BELOW: one of the old stone dams built to provide a pool upstream for fishing.

Submitted by: Brian Cowden – RVTU chapter president (former)

Dam Removal - Musconetcong River Hackettstown

The dam slows the river upstream causing sediment deposition and warming the water while preventing upstream fish passage in low flows like we have now.

RVTU members making a difference!

Dam removed

Submitted by: RVTU Web master