High Rock Park, Staten Island

Posted by Anthony Licciardello on Friday, May 27th, 2011 at 4:48pm.

High Rock Park is rich in history, as well as wildlife.  The park is located in the town of Egbertville or more commonly known as New Dorp Heights, on Nevada Avenue.  It is separated from Blood Root Valley on the west by Manor Road and the Moravian Cemetery to the east.  During the 1800's, the land was owned by various families.  In the 1930's, it was owned by the Boy Scouts Council.

In 1951, the land was sold to the Girl Scouts Council of Greater New York.  At this time, plans for a bridge from Staten Island to Brooklyn were underway.  With the completion of the bridge in 1964, which is now referred to as the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, the population of Staten Island was expanding.  As a result, many new houses were being built.  Plans were made to build houses in the woodland area of the camp.  Once they started bulldozing the area, Gretta Moulton, who worked at the camp, and several others protested, believing that the beautiful area should be preserved.  The following year, the area was dedicated as a park. Much of the park is dedicated to passive parkland, basically meaning the park is left to its natural state, however, there are various trails and facilities, including a gift shop and small museum located at the park.
 
In 1995, a gate was built at the entrance of High Rock Park on Nevada Avenue as a memorial for Gretta Moulton.  Through the gate is a trail, which is known as the Gretta Moulton Trail, takes you through the forests and wetlands.  Outside the gate is a parking lot, which was built in 1996 over the area that had been bulldozed in the 1960's.

In addition to the Gretta Moulton Trail, there are five more trails within the park.  The trails all offer views of the ponds and various wildlife that inhabit the park.  You can also climb the 260-foot Mt. Moses, which offers an all-around, wonderful panoramic view of Staten Island's mid-island section.

High Rock Park is part of the Staten Island Greenbelt Conservancy, whose headquarters are located in the park.  During the year, the Greenbelt Conservancy hosts many events in the 94-acre park.  During the summer, especially, many events occur at the park.  Staying true to the last century, the park still has a summer camp, which takes place between early July  through early August each summer.

High Rock Park is located just east of the community of Lighthouse Hill with the Staten Island towns of Richmondtown and LaTourette sitting just east and south respectively.

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