Way to represent Pete!
Saturday was the dedication ceremony for the new bridge over the Wanaque river in the Longpond Ironworks state park.
It got destroyed seven years ago by hurricane Irene and it has taken this long to get it rebuilt. It is an important bridge
because it is part of the Highlands trail and also the trailhead for the multi-use Hasenclever Iron trail that runs from
Longpond Ironworks to Ringwood Manor, and the Sterling Ridge trail, and the Hewitt-Butler Trail,
Last year I called the NYNJTC to complain about how long it was taking to repair this bridge. I spoke to the director,
Peter Dolan, who informed me they were working on it this week and he asked if I would like to help. I had opened my big mouth,
and so I said sure, I would help. I worked with the crew for two days, lifting the side braces and getting them in place across the river.
There were only about six or seven of us working on it. Most workers were either paid, or NYNJTC people.
I arrived today wearing my JORBA shirt and introduced myself to Peter Dolen, who actually remembered me.
He in turn introduced me to Mark Texel, the Director of New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry. And also to
Paul Frost, Longpond Ironworks coordinator, and also to Josh Osowski, Northern Regional Superintendent.
I was introduced as a volunteer that helped build the bridge and also as a member of JORBA and the mountain biking community.
I mentioned how great it is that all of us as trail users are coming together to build and maintain the local trails, including Sterling Forest
and Wawayanda. I thought it was kind of fun being there with these guys and showing support for their work as well as the mountain
biking community. I did mention the situation of accessing the Hasenclever Iron trailhead at the bridge, with the dilemma of not being
allowed to ride a bike in Longpond Ironworks state park. Hmmm, I said, is it OK to arrive at Longpond and walk the bike the 1/4 mile to
the trailhead. There wasn’t really a response other than “that might work”. We’ll have to look into that. I mentioned how even the Appellation
trail has multi-use sections. I had a great day and we all had good stories. One from Mark Texel was when he was hiking at Allamuchy with his
family he was slightly lost and looking over his map, when a mountain biker came by and offered his help. Mark was pleasantly surprised by
the courteous biker and thanked him and never told him that he was the Director New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry. Ha!
View attachment 67330
View attachment 67333
View attachment 67332
View attachment 67331
View attachment 67329