Cranberry Bog Nature Preserve is a tiny jewel set in the wetlands of Riverhead. The park is what remains of an abandoned cranberry-growing operation. The 165-acre preserve serves as part of the drainage system of the Peconic River and is a natural reservoir for Long Island's fresh water supply. The acidic marshes, bogs and wetlands of the surrounding area, made it an ideal habitat for growing cranberries.
Hiking trails on the property allow for sights of the Little Peconic River, various plant life, birds species, reptiles and other local wildlife. You'll enjoy a wide variety of sights, sounds and smells during different seasons - at the height of summer, the aroma of Sweet Pepper Bush fills the air; in the winter the foliage is gone from the trees, but that makes the pond all the more visible. Great Blue Herons fish here frequently, as do kingfishers. About 3/4 of the way around the trail, you'll come across what's left of an old pump house from when the Woodhull family farmed cranberries at the bog. The focal point of the 1.1 mile loop is the wooden bridge over the bog.
Located on the west side of Lake Avenue in Riverhead, just about a mile or so south of the traffic circle by the river. Look for a sign that marks the entrance to the preserve. There's a small off-road parking area. You'll need to walk in to the loop trail which takes you around Sweezy Pond. At the end of the old tar roadway there's a sign pointing the way to the start of the trail.