Nearly all of the Great Egg Harbor River system lies within an area of more than one million acres traditionally known as the Pime Barrens.
Two key ingredients make up this largely undeveloped landscape: sand and water.
The sand, deposited by an ancient river more than 20 million years ago, is morte than 95% silica.
The water quicklu seeps through the layers of sand and beds of gravel to form one of North America's largest inderground reservoirs, or aquifers, jolding 17 trillion gallons of fresh, drinkable water.
Natural vegetation in the Pinelands varies with moisture and elevation. In the dry uplands, vegetation consists of pitch pine and scrub oak with an understory of blueberry and huckleberry. In the lowlands, red maple and tupelo trees dominate, with blueberry, sweetbay, magnolia, holly, sweet pepperbush and swamp azaleas fill in along the waterways.