Schiff FAQs

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Schiff Nature Preserve, Mendham NJWho owns Schiff?

Schiff is a private land trust under the management of Schiff Natural Lands Trust, Inc. Many acres of our preserve and land easements are jointly owned or managed in partnership with local municipalities, including Mendham Township, Mendham Borough and Chester Township. Our board of trustees is responsible for financial and operational oversight of Schiff.

How is Schiff funded?

Membership fees account for more than half the monies we raise every year to keep our trails groomed for your safe enjoyment, and our Nature Center open for our educational programs. The rest of the money is raised through our annual campaign, occasional fundraising events, and a few grants. As a registered nonprofit organization -- 501 (c)(3) -- Schiff is exempt from local property taxes, but we receive no other recurring funding from our local municipalities. Your membership and generous donations are critical to preserving this land for generations to come! Join today!

Why doesn’t Schiff have outdoor trash cans?

Schiff is home to a variety of animals, including black bears... and bears love to dig through trash cans. We don't want to invite them to a picnic! Please carry out all waste materials, including doggie bags.

Is it okay to walk off-trail?

While it may seem fun to do some bushwhacking, it is not advisable to walk off of the marked trails and it is not permitted. Going off trail increases your chances of tripping over hidden rocks and tree limbs, disturbing ground wasp nests, and contributing to erosion. Our marked trails are regularly cleared and maintained. We want your visit to be a safe one!

When is the Nature Center open?

Schiff is run by a small team of part-time staffers and volunteers. The Nature Center is open by appointment, during educational classes and programs, and as volunteer hours permit. Please call first to avoid disappointment - 973-543-6004.

Can I ride my horse / bike at Schiff?

Schiff has several trails marked for horseback riding and mountain bike riding. Please stay on the designated trails. No electric or motorized vehicles are permitted on the preserve at any time.

Does Schiff allow camping?

There are no official campsites, waste facilities, and no accommodations for camp vehicles. However, Schiff may accommodate small groups, such as scout troops, through prior arrangement. Please contact our Land Steward for details.