Places like Apple Pie Hill

becca

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Jan 30, 2012
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Me and my boyfriend love exploring out in the pines and want to find new places to go.
We like places like Apple Pie Hill. Old ruins and cemetery's are cool, but we want to discover places that are more stimulating, like how you can climb the fire tower. We like to explore and not just look.
Any suggestions? Thanks!
 

Boyd

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How about the Atlantic County Park at Estell Manor? http://www.aclink.org/PARKS/mainpages/estell.asp

There are very substantial ruins, both along the trails as well as hidden in the woods, from a huge munitions plant that was built in 1918, then closed down at the end of World War I: http://www.aclink.org/PARKS/mainpages/historic.asp

Also the ruins of the Estellville Glassworks from early 19th century at the South end of the park and a historic cemetery to the North. The South end of the park is developed with picnic areas, playgrounds and a large veterans cemetery. But the north end is wild and you will have it pretty much to yourself this time of year. On the drive down you could also visit the Weymouth Furnace ruins.

See my map of New Jersey for detailed trail coverage (which were the roads and railroad beds of the abandoned munitions plant): http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/maps/view/294/

Enter from Artesian Well Rd and park in the lot at the end if you want to explore the woods, or use the main entrance and park at the nature center if you want to see that end of the park. The original blueprints for the plant are on display in the Nature Center. Nice walk up along the river from Artesian Well Rd where you will find more ruins, including an old house.

estell.jpg
 

manumuskin

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i once donned a wetsuit and crawled/swam back the entire length of the tunnel that goes under the ruins by the artesian well and cemteery.I was practicing for a tight ,wet cave I had intentions on in Wva.I had a really big fish bump off of me on the way in and out.The water started out about hip deep with mad much at the bottom hence I sawm and there was only about 10 inches of airspace all the way back.at the end I turned around and looked back out at a wee speck of light.It's about 200 ft of tunnel or so it seemed,probably shorter,we tend to exaggerate tough places like that.There were no initials back there so i was probably the first one to do that or see that spot since it was built.At the end the floor comes up so that you can lay the upper half of your body out of the water and then cyurl up,turn around and head out.
 
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Gibby

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A day trip that would give you an interesting cross section of what the Barrens consist of would be and in order: Atsion, Hampton Park, Carranza Memorial, Friendship, the DeMarco Stone, Charles Will's grave and then up the road to Lake Oswego and finally Bear Swamp Hill. If you feel brave and have time, search out the landing gear in Bear Swamp. All of it can be driven by car, just bring a camera and lunch. A very simple trip, but rewarding.
 

Boyd

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i once donned a wetsuit and crawled/swam back the entire length of the tunnel that goes under the ruins by the artesian well.
That's amazing Al. I think I'd be too claustrophobic. That sounds like the ruins of the old powerplant - some cool historic photo's here: http://www.aclink.org/blc/utilities_images/index.asp



I only live a few miles from the park, so I've spent a lot of time exploring, but continue learn more. I'm working on a map of the ruins based on the blueprints at the Nature center. Has taken awhile to georeference the old plans to match the aerial photos, made more confusing since they didn't really build everything on the plans. I bought some 1951 aerials that are very good, and they've helped a lot. Need to get back out there soon now that the trees are bare to confirm some of these on foot. Here's just one small portion of the site, which is huge.




Not sure if I will make this project public however, since manyof the ruins are still in pretty good condition and I'd hate to see people start raiding them. And anyway, part of the fun is stumbling across them in the woods. :)
 

manumuskin

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I've stumbled across a few of the bigger ones but have never historical aerialed the place.probably be a good way to find a few more that I haven't found.have you ever been to the large ruin in Belcoville just east of highway 50 and on the north bank of south river?My ex wifes parents used to live all summer at the campground on 50 just south of south river and I used to explore that area heavily while they say around the campfire and ran the rest of the family down that wasn't there to defend themselves.I was looked upon as quite a weirdo,always coming back full of ticks and nary a deer to show for it.The kids in the area used to party at those ruins and I knew where and my young sister in law disappeared with a bunch of older guys one night and i had to go extricate her young illegal self from a bunch of drunken punks.She was well lit herself.I expected a fight but I think they were too amazed that i would walk in amongst em and tell her to grab her crap she was in big trouble.They all got real quiet and just stared at me.Stepping out of the dark i full camo and chest long beard must have had the desired effect.I was only about 23 myself.
 

Boyd

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I used to explore that area heavily while they say around the campfire and ran the rest of the family down that wasn't there to defend themselves
:D

Are you talking about the ruins of an old house along the river? Nice location for a house there, it doesn't show on the old aerials or plans and I've wondered what it was myself. It's somewhere around here: http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.421831485430104&lng=-74.73451852798462&z=17&type=nj2007&gpx=

The 1930 plans show the outlines of where many of the buildings were, but they don't match up very well with the newer, higher resolution photo's. I think they weren't georeferenced very accurately. You can see the best detail in the 1951 imagery at Historical Aerials. And some of the ruins are also visible on the contemporary aerials if you look in the right places.
 

manumuskin

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:D

Are you talking about the ruins of an old house along the river? Nice location for a house there, it doesn't show on the old aerials or plans and I've wondered what it was myself. It's somewhere around here: http://maps.njpinebarrens.com/#lat=39.421831485430104&lng=-74.73451852798462&z=17&type=nj2007&gpx=

The 1930 plans show the outlines of where many of the buildings were, but they don't match up very well with the newer, higher resolution photo's. I think they weren't georeferenced very accurately. You can see the best detail in the 1951 imagery at Historical Aerials. And some of the ruins are also visible on the contemporary aerials if you look in the right places.

no an old factory of some type .it is here and is visible on black n white aerials
39.43002° N 74.73555° W
 

Boyd

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Ah, I see. I have never been there, but it looks like it was the sewage disposal plant for the village - I have highlighted it in yellow. Have not done any real work on the area around the village yet.

sewageplant.jpg


BTW, I love the poem that is quoted on the website about the history of the area. :cool:

BELCOVILLE

(From the Nov. 18th, 1918 issue of the BELCO NEWS.)

Down in the wilds of Jersey,
Where you sink in mud to your knees,
There is a town called Belcoville,
And belcoville's the cheese.

They built this town in the Jersey Pines
At such an awful pace,
That Old Hog Island and Elwood, too,
Were never in the race.

The Sun did shine and the rain did rain,
And morning followed night,
But the building kept on going up,
It was a busy sight.

They would build a house in a single day,
From sunrise till it died,
And before the morning dawned again,
The house was occupied.

They built this town in the Jersey swamps,
Beside the E.H. river,
And the wind can blow and the snow can come,
But Belcoville will not shiver.

They have a Loading Plant there too,
Run by the B.L.C.,
It loads the shells that do the work,
With the boys across the sea.

There may be other sights, I know,
That make one sit up too,
But take a look at Belcoville,
When the construction gangs get through.

ANONYMOUS
 

Kevinhooa

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Belcoville (Bethlehem Loading Co.) is a great place to explore and it's easy to spend a whole day there if you like exploring and you have the maps. Not to mention this time of year is perfect. Amatol (Atlantic Loading Co.) is a great place too, but only the town portion of that one is legally accessible.

Al, that's crazy you went into that tunnel! Too funny. I checked it out and hung my head upside down in it, but no way was I going to jump in there!

A lot of good recommendations above.
 

MarkBNJ

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Amatol has much of the same character, and there is quite a bit to see back in the woods there. There's also that terra cotta pipe plant up off Woodmansie. I should be able to remember the name but it isn't coming to me right now. Begins with a B. Old Halfway is worth a stop and you can clamber around the hills there. Jemima Mt. too.