Parker Preserve Trail Out

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
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millville nj
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me ,My Wife,and my daughter and boyfriend and her two kids went walking in Parker Preserve yesterday.We intended on what I figured was a two mile loop and it turned into a 3 plus mile hike.On getting back to the car I rechecked the Billboard more thoroughly then I did on the way in since I knew the trail and had walked it several times previously a couple years ago and no mention was made of the river that now cut through the designated hiking trail I was trying to hike. I have no idea if this river crossing the trail which looked to be at least waist deep,maybe deeper was the idea of some nimrod who knows no better then to make a designated hiking trail,then rip out the dike it travels down without building a bridge or making a notice at the trailhead or if the winter rains did this.I had a six year ol grand daughter along who we knew could walk 2 miles but the almost four miles had her on her dads shoulders and her ten year old brother hobbling.I am also hobbling now for doing it in sneakers.Does anyone know if this is natural or idiot made?. We did the loop clockwise with a couple side trips and the river crossing is at the blue X.We were within site of closing the loop and had to walk all the way back around.I was going to strip and wade but the women refused and the grandson is also too big to carry.
 

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46er

Piney
Mar 24, 2004
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You're fortunate to have had good weather. It's no fun having young ones along and run into issues.
 

imkms

Explorer
Feb 18, 2008
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SJ and SW FL
I'm not sure if this is related, but I think it was Hurricane Sandy hit that area hard and much of the trail was closed due to damage and possibly destroying some of the dikes also. Combined with the earlier rains it may have caused the problems. Just guessing.
 
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manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
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I have no clue but the Hurricane was what? two,three years ago? That is not only enough time to fix the road or bridge it but barring prohibitive costs it costs nothing to put a letter inside the map board explaining that the trail is closed due to a deep water river crossing. I am an accomplished stripper at such places but the women no way they were gonna dance across that pole...I mean stream.
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
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Someone was out there driving around while we were there.They came up behind us in a white minivan as we approached the wash out.I think they heard we raising hell as they drove up behind me.They turned around very quickly and took off as we turned around before I could catch them and ask them how they got back there since it is all gated up.No doubt someone with the key who are special and allowed to drive back on a whim.Their tires are special tires and do no damage like the rest of our tires.They do however leave tracks and we followed these all the way back to the gate so they came in the same way we did.They had to have know the wash out was there since they obviously are back there repeatedly to have the key unless they had pliers and took off the carabiner that holds the chains together.They must have been snooping to see what we were doing or going to do when we hit the washout that we didn't know was there. The whole trip reminded me of a trip Whip and I did up the Batona Trail to Batsto back in the late 80's from Batsto to Quaker Bridge. We had dropped Bills car off on the east side of the bridge and without checking the bridge drove around to Batsto on 206 since neither of us had four wheel back then. As we aqpproached the bridge after a seven mile hike we say the original wooden bridge had been ripped out and nothing was left but pilings.We later learned they were replacing it with the steel grating now there. I think I can remember raising hell then as well.I had two non swimmers with me and I was fairly certain the water there was over our heads,at least Bills girlfriend it was who was fairly short.We had to back track about 100 yards downstream and found a place to cross where it was solar plexus deep on me and about shoulder deep on her.I do not recall seeing a "Bridge Out" sign on Quaker Bridge road either.Coulda been but I didn't see one.
 

Gibby

Piney
Apr 4, 2011
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Trenton
Why is there so much anger directed towards the NJCF? They are a solid group of individuals with many different backgrounds that have the pine barrens fauna, flora and geology focused in their studies and interests.
 
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46er

Piney
Mar 24, 2004
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Why is there so much anger directed towards the NJCF?
Anger? I don't see any anger; disappointment yes. If the NJCF opens the preserve to the public, it behooves them to maintain those public areas regardless of their disclaimer, as they have already noted obstacles on their trail map. If the blockage to that trail occurred recently is one thing, but if it were 2 1/2 years ago it is plain irresponsibility.
 
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imkms

Explorer
Feb 18, 2008
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SJ and SW FL
I remember walking those trails after the storm and there were signs posted at each end of the loop that Manumuskin took that day. It might just be that someone removed the sign at the far end of that loop so you would not know about the closure until you were upon it. Had Al started the loop from the opposite direction, I wonder if the sign that was posted and visible here,
https://forums.njpinebarrens.com/threads/parker-southgate-yellow-trail-closed.9641/ still exists.
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
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There should have been a notice on the map board at the parking area.True I didn't pay much mind to the map board on the way out because I knew the area but I checked it on the way out and there was nothing there.There should have been signs at the fork in the trail as apparently there was according to Ed's post but there wasn't unless it was past the fork just short of the wash out.yes if I had went counterclockwise I could have saved us much extra walking and listening to the two kids whine.They were just starting to whine and I told them 15 minutes when we came upon the washout and I had to change that to an hour.I"m going to have to learn to do my stream crossings first instead of saving them for last.
 

Ben Ruset

Administrator
Site Administrator
Oct 12, 2004
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Asbury Park, NJ
I just got a message from a representative of the NJCF:

"We're sorry that you ran into so much trouble on your hike. New Jersey Conservation Foundation has signs along the damaged trail warning would-be hikers against using that section. Unfortunately, from time to time those signs get vandalized or otherwise knocked down. We'll do our best to keep them up. Meanwhile we continue to work toward repairing the damage. Thanks for visiting the Franklin Parker Preserve, and feel free to contact New Jersey Conservation Foundation before your next hike for any questions or updates. Contact us at info@njconservation.org. Again, we apologize for the inconvenience and will try to make the trail more clearly marked in the future. "
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
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millville nj
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I was apparently the victim of vandals.If it had just been me I would of stripped and waded but I was accompanied by several sissies so had to turn a 2.5 mile hike into an almost 5 mile hike.Whiney younguns:-(
 

NJChileHead

Explorer
Dec 22, 2011
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I was apparently the victim of vandals.If it had just been me I would of stripped and waded but I was accompanied by several sissies so had to turn a 2.5 mile hike into an almost 5 mile hike.Whiney younguns:-(
I'm foreseeing a thread about a naked swimmer sighting at the Parker Preserve
 
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