Hike the Morris Canal, Highland, & Sussex Branch Trails

On Sunday, January 17, 2016 we will do a 5-6 hour hike on the Morris
Canal Trail, Highland Trail, and Sussex Branch Trail. There is a natural
exit point about halfway the hike (Waterloo Village).

We will meet at 8:45am on the Sussex Branch Trail trailhead in Allamuchy
State Park, on Waterloo Road (CR 604), across from where Continental
Drive ends on Waterloo Road. Coordinates 40.921208, -74.738616 . We
will drive with as few cars as possible to the Morris Canal Trail
(towpath) trailhead on Bilby Road in Hackettstown.

The Morris Canal towpath from Bilby Road to Waterloo Road has recently
been cleaned and is now perfectly passable.

We will hike the Morris Canal Trail to Waterloo Village (look it up on
Google), then hike the Highland Trail to the Sussex Branch Trail (SBT) in
Allamuchy Park, then the SBT south to the trailhead on CR 604.

People looking for a shorter hike should hike only from Bilby Road to
Waterloo Village.

The hike from Bilby Road to Waterloo Village is flat. The hike from
Waterloo Village to the SBT involves climbing a hill. (Beautiful view).

Make sure to have good hiking boots, water, food, snacks.
Weather forecast for Sunday is partly sunny, high of 34 degrees.

Let me know if you plan to participate.

Teun Ott
teun@teunisott.com
908-655-7772 (Cell)

Independence Day Hike on Patriots Path

On Saturday July 04 2015 (Independence Day) we will do a hike on the
white blazed Patriots’ Path, from Stephens Park to Fairview Ave.

We will meet at 8:45 on the parking lot between Fairview Ave and
the Columbia Trail in Washington Township. We will then drive with
as few cars as feasible to Stephens Park, and hike back. The whole
hike will be on the white blazed Patriots’ Path.

Teun hiked this in almost exactly 5 hours. For people wanting a
shorter hike there is the possibility of putting rescue cars at
intermediate points, for example in Schooleys’ Mountain Park.

The hike has a fair amount of up and down, but nothing compared
with the Delaware Water Gap or the Schunemunk.

A good map can be found on
http://www.morrisparks.net/aspparks/patpathmain.asp,
click on “Trail Maps”, click on “Patriots’ Path Section 2”.
(The Stephens Park end is in the insert at the bottom.)
Click on + and – and move to the stretch you want.

Some background:

The Patriots’ Path system in Morris County has some 150 (?) miles
of trail, blazed white, blue, red, etc. The “white trail” is the back
bone trail, it goes roughly east-west, from Passaic River (boundary
with Essex County) to the Musconetcong (boundary with Warren County).
It is roughly 55 miles long.
We will hike it from the Musconetcong roughly south-east.

Two other trails worth mentioning are the Highland Trail and the
Liberty Gap Trail. Look them up on the web. The Highland Trail
(diamond shaped “teal” blazes, I call it turquoise) goes from
Riegelsville on the Delaware to Storm King Mountain on the Hudson. The
Liberty Gap trail (diamond shaped blazes with a picture of the crown
of the Statue of Liberty) goes from Liberty Park to the Delaware Water
Gap. Both trails “borrow” right of way on the trail we will hike.

The hike some of us did on 10/26/2014 was from Stephens Park in the
opposite direction: across the Musconetcong to Warren County, then N and
a bit E to Sussex County and Allamuchy Park.

Directions to the Fairview parking lot:
From Chester take CR 513 (old Rte 24) west. Make a right into Coleman.
When Coleman crosses Bartley Road it becomes Naughright Road. Stay on
Naughright Road. Make a left into Fairview. The parking lot will be on
your left. If you get to Long Valley you have gone too far.

Directions to Stephens Park:
In Hackettstown, from where Rte 182 ends on Rte 46 (traffic light) take
CR 604 (Willow Grove Street) north. Make a right into Park Road and then
a right, across the bridge, into Stephens Park. After the bridge make a
left into the parking lot. There are toilets.

leaders:
Teun Ott, teun@teunisott.com908-879-5374 (H), 908-655-7772 (C).
Brian Coan, bcoan@appcomsci.com908-748-2076 (W), 862-222-6471 (C).
Let one of us know if you plan to attend.

Patriots Path Hike in Chester on June 6, 2015

A guided hike will take place on Saturday, June 6th on the Patriots Path white blaze trail segment that runs between Furnace Road and Tanners’ Brook Road, in Chester, NJ.  Participants should park in the parking lot at the corner of Furnace Road and Tanners Brook Road (which is marked with a ‘Hunter’s Parking’ sign).   The hike will begin in the parking lot at 9:00 am, and will be about a mile and a half in total length over generally pleasant terrain.  Hikers should wear sturdy shoes since several stretches of the trail have exposed rocks and pass over piles of sharp-edged slag from the furnace operation.   Bug spray would also be helpful, given several nearby stretches of swampy ground.

The trail walk will go alongside of the site of the historic Chester Furnace, a state-of-the-art facility from the late 1800’s that processed ore from local mines into rectangular ingots of high-carbon ‘pig iron’.  In addition to pointing out the surviving artifacts from the Furnace operation, the hike will also pass by the site of the ill-fated Lake Takene resort community and train station.  At a leisurely pace, the walk+talk should last about 90 minutes or less.

Leader: Bruce Clark. Call to sign up (862) 812-7668 or email him at bruce.randolph.clark@gmail.com.