Riker Hill Quarry - Roseland, NJ
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member Math Teacher
N 40° 48.945 W 074° 19.593
18T E 556795 N 4518522
Quick Description: This Waymark is located in Essex County, NJ., within the town of Roseland. There is a well-marked trail which leads to the geologic area. There is also some steep climbing involved as well.
Location: New Jersey, United States
Date Posted: 2/10/2008 5:11:17 AM
Waymark Code: WM34RX
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Volcanoguy
Views: 161

Long Description:
This site is also known as Roseland Quarry, Riker Hill Fossil Site, and Walter Kidde Dinosaur Park.


This is a very interesting and unique area. First, it is not to be found on any map. Second, one needs to walk through the woods for about .14 miles until the actual trail is reached, which after a short .12 mile walk quickly opens up into a dark red landscape of rock. The uniqueness of this area is characterized by flaggy, fresh exposures of sedimentary red beds. Once you reach ground zero, there are large fields of flagstone strewn everywhere. About 200 feet further, there is a bonus feature, a high wall of basalt, which is an igneous rock intrusion feature.

The red beds are from the Early Jurassic Towaco Formation, consisting of layered shale and intervening flaggy sandstone that preserve a variety of very well-preserved sedimentary structures and some cool features including ripple marks, desiccation cracks and occasionally, if you are lucky, trace fossils (rare dinosaur tracks which are very tiny). It is illegal to remove anything, especially fossils, from the area. Please look and handle gently but do not destroy. At ground zero, there are a few fantastic areas where you can see the layers of the shale on some larger rock samples. FYI: There is a considerable amount of 3/4" Red Shale which goes for about $79.00/yard at your local landscaper commercial supply store.…don’t get any ideas!

How is sedimentary rock formed?

For thousands, even millions of years, little pieces of earth have been eroded and worn away by wind and water. These little bits of earth are washed downstream where they settle to the bottom of rivers, lakes, and oceans. Layer after layer of eroded earth is deposited on top of each, pressed down more and more through time, until the bottom layers slowly turn into rock. Shale rock is a type of sedimentary rock formed from clay that is compacted together by pressure. They are used to make bricks and other material that is fired in a kiln. The small amounts of sandstone you may encounter are also sedimentary rocks made from small grains of the minerals quartz and feldspar. They often form in layers as seen in this picture. They are often used as building stones.

I did the following which helped me appreciate this area:
1. Stood under one of the outcrops to fathom the sheer mass of one of these and for an excellent photo-op.
2. Held a piece basalt and shale side by side & compared the two to better understand the differences
3. Climbed up the basalt wall to fully appreciate this site
4. Searched for dinosaur fossils BUT did not touch or take

Waymark is confirmed to be publicly accessible: yes

Parking Coordinates: N 40° 48.766 W 074° 19.489

Access fee (In local currency): .00

Requires a high clearance vehicle to visit.: no

Requires 4x4 vehicle to visit.: no

Public Transport available: yes

Website reference: [Web Link]

Visit Instructions:
No specific requirements, just have fun visiting the waymark.
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Recent Visits/Logs:
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the bogjuan visited Riker Hill Quarry - Roseland, NJ 9/28/2019 the bogjuan visited it
BigA800 visited Riker Hill Quarry - Roseland, NJ 2/15/2009 BigA800 visited it

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