batona trail hike

Ben Ruset

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The Cranberry Trail at Brendan Byrne might work out well for a stroller. It's handicap accessible, so it's either paved, packed dirt, or a boardwalk. It's only 2.7 miles long, though.
 

imkms

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Feb 18, 2008
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You might want to give the Franklin Preserve a try. take the entrance on 532 across from Lake Chatsworth. This consists mostly of dirt roads that wander thru old bog areas. There are also wooded areas and trails. The roads are packed pretty good and I don't see where your stroller should be a problem at all. It also keeps you far enough from the bushes to keep the chiggers at bay. This is a pretty area, with lots of sky and water views. I've seen eagles, deer and beaver at this area.
http://www.njconservation.org/franklinparkerpreserve.htm
 

Boyd

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The Estell Boardwalk is ideal for avoiding chiggers. It can be slippery right after a rain though, so be careful. As I mentioned in another thread, there are some very impressive ruins in the park as well. You will see some of the less impressive ones from the boardwalk, but there are some nice ones along the regular trails. Unfortunately, there is usually a lot of chigger-infested grass on the regular trails so that might need to wait for the cooler weather. The best ruins are deep in the woods and require bushwacking that can be difficult, so that needs to be done in the winter.

If you park by the nature center at the South entrance to the park, go inside and look at the old blueprint that shows all the buildings from the old factory - it is just to your right when you enter the nature center. The southern part of the park is developed and the northern part is wild. You can follow the loop road around the southern part, and there are a couple of nice big playgrounds that my granddaughter enjoys.
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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In reading up on this place..they allow hunting in a county park? Around here that is never permisssble. I thought they were really only permitted in the WMA/Fish and Wildlife Areas. They do shotgun hunting. Now, all this kind of frightens me come the late fall/winter season. I don't want chiggers so maybe the boardwalk will be good to go. I may actually head out there today to check it out! Oh and did you say, Ruins?? Pineywoman loves me some ruins! Thank you. Seriously.
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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Here's a question off topic..has anyone been to the Unexpected preserve in Winslow. I have heard it is by appointment only. Is it worth going to?

Thanks IMKMS. That has also been on my list the Parker preserve. I thought it would be incredibly rustic, but seems to be I'd be able to explore a little. Thank you!!
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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Ben thanks for the suggestion...but shhhhhhh. Let the PROS handle it. Hahahahaha. You know I'm kidding, right?? After all, you're the almighty of this site. Thanks for the suggestion. I haven't been to Brendan "Thunder" Byrne yet. Hmmmm.
 

Ben Ruset

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Well there's a nice article on the front page if you'd like to read all about Brendan Byrne! (The State Forest, not the former Governor.)
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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I know. I have read it. I am just busting your Pygmy Pine chops, lol. It is actually what intrigued me about this site. Besides you guys talking about me being stuck in the sand like an idiot. It was the first article I checked out.
 

Boyd

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Ben's Branch, Stephen Creek
In reading up on this place..they allow hunting in a county park? Around here that is never permisssble.
I've spent a lot of time exploring this park and have also wondered about the hunting rules. All I can say is that I've never seen a hunter there myself. Sometimes the gate to the North entrance (Artesian Well Rd) is closed and I've wondered if that might be due to hunting season.

If you go off the trails it is mostly dense thicket that is difficult to navigate - this is where the most interesting ruins are. For the most part, there's little evidence that anybody has been to most of these places for a long time. That makes me think there aren't many hunters around, but I really don't know.

If you ask at the Nature Center they can probably tell you what the hunting rules are.


b112.jpg
 

GermanG

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Apr 2, 2005
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Little Egg Harbor
I've seen hunters there in the past and the park's website indicates it is allowed, in the northern section only. Every county sets its own rules regarding hunting, so I'm not surprised it's allowed in a county park, but a bit so that it is in this one. Although I'm a hunter myself, I'd think the density of hiking trails here place the two activities at odds with each other.
 

Teegate

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imkms gave you a good suggestion. There are at least two other Parker Preserve locations you should visit.

First, enter at either of these two locations and park at the gate.

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.82389697433926&lng=-74.52067136764526&z=16&type=h&gpx=

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.820831654649645&lng=-74.52685117721558&z=16&type=h&gpx=

Then walk to the reservoir. There is a bench for you to sit and relax.

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.82035371613935&lng=-74.51213121414185&z=16&type=h&gpx=

Then I would suggest if you want to go into the woods, walk down this road and enjoy the view.


http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.82014770713558&lng=-74.50402557849884&z=18&type=h&gpx=



Second, you can also visit another Parker Preserve at the below link. This one has "Long Causeway" which is nice.

Park here at the gate.

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.79556227985556&lng=-74.49781894683838&z=16&type=h&gpx=

Long Causeway

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.79485335069366&lng=-74.49172496795654&z=16&type=h&gpx=

Walk the bogs and if you are adventuress you can walk this path.

http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.795496333265&lng=-74.48707938194275&z=17&type=h&gpx=
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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Ooooh Ahhhh!! Love it!! Today, I checked out Saddler's Woods. It has a trail map you can download and a "Tree Tour" . Man it was a bit difficult I had to trek my Son up and down hiking stairs and over branches/stumps and then all the way through Newton's Creek got a little wet. No chiggers. Thank goodness his stroller is called "The Expedition" hahaha. It was fun.

Teegate the last link you sent, does that trail get flooded out a lot? I see it's right near a creek/marsh area.

Going to check out the above mentioned at least one this week.
 

Gibby

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Apr 4, 2011
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You might want to give the Franklin Preserve a try. take the entrance on 532 across from Lake Chatsworth. This consists mostly of dirt roads that wander thru old bog areas. There are also wooded areas and trails. The roads are packed pretty good and I don't see where your stroller should be a problem at all. It also keeps you far enough from the bushes to keep the chiggers at bay. This is a pretty area, with lots of sky and water views. I've seen eagles, deer and beaver at this area.
http://www.njconservation.org/franklinparkerpreserve.htm
The Preserve is one of my go to places. There is always something interesting to find on the property from flora to fauna.


As of yesterday, these freckled rarities are in full bloom on the property. The endangered flower is a Pine Barrens Gentian (Gentiana autumnalis). However, I believe most are plantings.
Parker.jpg
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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Gibby that's beautiful! Blue/purple flower varieties are usually very rare. Great photo. I'm a garden nut so I think I would truly enjoy it here, thank you ALL for being so helpful. I think you guys made my mind up for this week's Piney adventure with the bambino.
 

Teegate

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Saddlers Woods is an interesting place. It was the MacArthur tract and was called McArthurs woods until about 5 years or so ago. I took a tour of the place in the rain not long after they acquired it and the old growth trees were impressive.

This was 11/16/2002. The tree in the middle behind the group is one of the oldest trees in the state.



Another tree



My dad grew up on an adjacent street and I have always wondered if as a kid he played in those woods. There was an old large home on the property where the High School is now and I remember as a kid being at my grandmothers house and hearing my uncle telling my dad they were going to tear the house down for a school.

Guy
 

pineywoman

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Aug 24, 2012
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Guy. I took photos of the same tree today! I believe it is called the old growth Tulip Poplar. Once I upload my pictures to the computer, I'll post some pics. I did EVERY trail there even this insane one that went up about 45 degree angle that trail is the Doug Hefty trail. There is a TON of history of this place and NO ONE really knows about it. It is privately owned which may be the case. I walked through the newton creek today, it is very pretty AND spotted some owl and got some great shots. The emancipation beech and "Four Trunks" trees were my favorite. Was a nice experience. Just odd because it is so serene and then all the development around you.

Your dad must've done some exploring back in the day! It was odd. I saw two boys playing back there and one on their cell phone, lol. If only we had those things at 12 years old, eh? That 45 degree angle killed me with the stroller. It is the most narrow one there too.

I didn't know it was the oldest in the state. Pretty neat!
 

Gibby

Piney
Apr 4, 2011
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Trenton
Gibby that's beautiful! Blue/purple flower varieties are usually very rare. Great photo. I'm a garden nut so I think I would truly enjoy it here, thank you ALL for being so helpful. I think you guys made my mind up for this week's Piney adventure with the bambino.
You can find a light purple variation there too.

Parkerwhitesm.jpg
 
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