Hiking in the Pines

VTowner

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Dec 31, 1969
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Does anyone know of good places to go for day hikes? I'm pretty familiar with the Pines hot-spots, but I'm trying to find somewhere that you can't drive to and where I won't run into too many people or the stuff they've left behind. I don't know if there is such a place, but I keep imagining that there's got to be somewhere I can walk to that's not on the Batona, not on a Wharton map, and not recently been littered with paintballs and a 30-pack of Busch Light. I don't mind walking half a day to get there if I can see some pristine forest or interesting remnants of Pine industry.
 

BobM

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Dec 31, 1969
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Vtowner,

Get yourself a compass and topographic maps and just go. Charge right in, the hell with the sand roads and trails. It's all I ever do. Very infrequently do I have a "spot" in mind. Most of the charge I get out of exploring the pines is going deep into places not many people have ever been to before. I equally enjoy both fighting my way through a cedar swamp and walking briskly through an upland forest where the going is easy. I only use a sand road as an excuse to get quickly to a spot I want to bushwack through.

If you ever feel up to doing what I do, let me know. I'll take you out with me and you can see how it is.
 

VTowner

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Dec 31, 1969
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Thanks for the offer Bob. For the moment, I'd still like to try to find some stuff on my own, but I might take you up on your offer sometime.

As an aside, you gave me directions a while ago to get to Aserdaten. I tried to find it this weekend, and I may have found something. I followed your directions exactly, except the distances seemed off. You sent me to the base of the old fire station, then I turned around, then took my first right. It was supposed to be 1.3 miles down on the right. I was walking, so I can't be sure, but it felt like I walked 2 or 3 miles and eventually came to a cedar swamp with a small bridge over the sand road. Is this where you were talking about? There were a lot of bricks and concrete around, and the remains of two houses and a well on the higher ground just past the bridge that looked more recent than Aserdaten would have been. It became private property so I didn't go in any further. It was a good walk, whatever I found.
 

BobM

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Dec 31, 1969
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VTowner,

You went too far. I believe you stumbled on the site of the old "Chislers gunning club". It is mentioned in "Jersey Genesis" on page 179. There is a lot of history there. Actually, there is a grave near where you ended up marked "T.G. Black, 1858". The bridge is "Blacks Bridge", and it crosses the Chamberlin Branch of Cedar Creek.

Anyway, sorry you missed it. Anytime you want to go back, I can go with you if you want.....Bob