Pretty much all of the trails within this state are one of three catergories. State owned (State Parks), WMA ( Wildlife management area, Private property.
State Parks such as Wharton or Brendon Byrne, or Sokes are tax payer paid and you are allowed to drive on roads that they deem roads. Some of these "roads" can be challenging terrain, alot are no more than unimproved dirt roads. The same rules for the highways apply within the state parks ( title 39). The "rangers" that patrol these grounds are actually New Jersey State Park Police. They hold the same authority as a state trooper trooper. On top of title 39 you have NJ Divison of Parks and Forestry regs as well. they can be found here: http://www.nj.gov/dep/rules/rules/njac7_2.pdf
. There is no map in existence of exactly what trails are legal to transverse and which are not. No... your GPS is not a valid map. Even though GPS's show trails to pretty good detail (depending on software), that does not make them legaL or not.
NJWMA's are legal to be in from Dawn til dusk. Here is a list of every WMA http://www.nj.gov/dep/fgw/wmaland.htm
if you click on the name of the WMA there is a map for every one of them. Once again these maps are not legal proof of where you can and cannot be. Title 39 regs also apply out here as well.
Private property, obviously you need to have permission granted to be on their property.
All of New Jersey land has these rules that apply:
I have contacted numerous people within the state that play key roles and not one of them can give you a definitive answer of where you can and cannot drive. They won't touch this with a 10 foot pole. This is where wheeling in Jersey sucks if you are trying to be legit because there is no definition opf legit, it is all up to law enforcements opinionated guess as to where you can and cannot be.
For the most part if you stay on trails that appear commonly used and they are not marked "No Motor Vehicles" with a sign you will be fine. If you see a cool mudhole off to the side of the trail or a set of ruts into a grassy swampy meadow, youre not supposed to be there and you are facing the possibilty of numerous fines equaling over $1000. If your vehicle dos not match proper inspection requirements you could be facing inpoundment as well. Also by no means do not let law enforcement see you or a pic of you on top of any vegatation, even if it appears to be just weeds, it could be endangered and it will cause world war III.
Oh yeah, the reason I have put forth this much research is due to the fact that. I do not have the time nor money to be going to Rausch several times a wekk, plus I like to wheel during the night time hours which I cannot do at Rausch. With that said. I still can't wait to0 get back out to Rausch for a change of scenery.