Sunday 11/23 orange trail ride

frickster

New Member
What time will people be meeting up on Sunday for the orange trail ride? Btw- how novice is it if it is an 18mile loop of trail riding? I'm definitely up for it, but seems like it would be a challenge for real newbies.

I know that Sat is "Take Your Kid Hunting" day, so for the future, how does one find out those dates in order to avoid? I'd hate to unknowingly show up on one of those day and see Dick Cheney heading off into the woods!:getsome:
 

sj_john

Member
Sunday

We will be meeting around 10 AM.
It is at a easy pace so that newer riders can finish.
For info on hunting dates:
http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/
John

What time will people be meeting up on Sunday for the orange trail ride? Btw- how novice is it if it is an 18mile loop of trail riding? I'm definitely up for it, but seems like it would be a challenge for real newbies.

I know that Sat is "Take Your Kid Hunting" day, so for the future, how does one find out those dates in order to avoid? I'd hate to unknowingly show up on one of those day and see Dick Cheney heading off into the woods!:getsome:
 

frickster

New Member
I probably can't make it that early due to some family-related stuff in the morning. I may go around 12p on Sunday.
Sounds like a great effort has been made to establish this trail and I can't wait to try it out. Have a great ride!
 

frickster

New Member
Rescued yesterday by State Parks Police -- uggghhhh =(

Hey - believe it or not, I had to be rescued by state parks police last night out at Wharton Forest - uggghhh, sooo humiliating. :cry:

I'm fine, no injuries and no bike damage. I was about 14/18 miles into the orange trail when it got dark and couldn't see the trail anymore. I was alone (mistake #1), it was pitch black and could no longer see the trail well enough to ride (no light-mistake #2), freezing my ass off -- it was 28 degrees (no additional clothes, no lighter - mistake #3) and it took them almost 2hrs to find me. I obviously underestimated time to complete (mistake #4) and started out too late in the day (mistake #5) even though I rode hard (at least I thought I was) for ~3 straight hrs. I could not tell how far into the trail I was and I kept thinking that I must be close to the green trail pickup -- nope:hmmm:. They finally found me after almost 2hrs of searching near Goodwater Rd. Thank G-d I had one bar of cell phone reception and was able to reach 911 and one of the Parks Police Officers called me back (after 5 tries due to dropped calls). He was incredibly reassuring and said he had two vehicles out looking for me and they would come get me no matter what -- those guys were awesome.

I finally stopped riding where the single track trail crossed over an ATV trail that was wide enough for a car - figured it was the best chance of being found by vehicle. I don't know what I would have done next if I had no cell phone service at all - I couldn't even see the ground well enough to ride anymore (no moon even).

Learned several important lessons...can't believe that happened.
Btw -- totally friggin awesome trail and I will be back on it probably this holiday weekend AND STARTING OUT MUCH EARLIER AND WILL BE CARRYING SOME ADDITIONAL SUPPLIES AND RIDING WITH SOMEONE!!!
 
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sixseven

New Member
Some toothless pineys would have found you eventually and feasted on your flesh. Glad you were able to get help!
I camped once out there and after setting up camp went for a hike. It got dark, my dog gave up walking and I had to carry him in a makeshift sweatshirt back pack. I couldn't find my way back, just kept following the creek hoping I would recognize something. I stopped and took a nap on some roots, sun came up and I was 50' from my tent.
I lit a fire and dried my clothes. A park warden pulls up and gives me 3 tickets, one for the dog, one for not being in an authorized campsite (even though it had a fire pit and looked like every other campsite) and one for the fire.
I still love it out there. Going to have to ride Wharton this winter.
 

frickster

New Member
Toothless pineys? I thought I only had the friggin NJ Devil to worry about!! That orange trail is fantastic -- very well marked, although I think the markers are a bit too far between.

That's a great story -- sounds like something I'd do.

I guess this orange trail is so new that the Parks Police are not familiar with it yet and one of them didn't even know it existed -- they originally thought I was up on the orange hiking trail (different trail in different part of the park?) and that is probably why it took them the extra hour to find me.

At one point, I rode past a folding chair on the side of the trail with a big sign-like thing behind it. Poor man's deer stand? Kinda weird. Overall, I didn't come across hardly any dumping out there.
 

mike_243

JORBA Board Member/Chapter Leader
JORBA.ORG
Toothless pineys? I thought I only had the friggin NJ Devil to worry about!!
AKA: deliverance,,Trust me I lived in Barneget for 6 years and this is a good term to use...
I think I need to ride this trail I have been camping down to Wharton and it was a blast..
My buddy does rides through the park check out I do not remember the club he rides out of I know they are in association with beechwood bikes.
Thinking it is time for a 501 CREW ride at Wharton....:)
 

sj_john

Member
Orange Trail

Glad to hear that you made it out safely.

The trail has not been officially turned over to the Park.

Some of the Park Police don't seem to know about the Green trail either.

The designer of both trails was out there earlier on Sunday with some of the crew. They were mapping an extension out to Mount Devious off of the Orange. He stated that sandwhiches and caffinated beverages will be needed to finish the loop when this section is added.

It does get pitch dark out there. If you are starting the trail in the afternoon at this time of year, it would be prudent to bring lights, as you learned.

John
 
M

MattyJay88

Guest
Where did you park to access this trail. It sounds like a blast. I love about 40-45 minutes from Wharton but have never been.
 

frickster

New Member
Where did you park to access this trail. It sounds like a blast. I love about 40-45 minutes from Wharton but have never been.

You go to Batsto Village which is right off of route 542 outside of Hammonton. The trail starts out and ends at the back of the parking lot.
Check out the maps in this forum to see the trails.
 

frickster

New Member
One thing I learned from the Park Police Officers is that they have had to make a few rescues of people recently on the green trail because they have gotten lost. You may want to pass this info along to the trail designers.

I have to be honest and say that I do think the trail markers on both the orange and green trails are a bit too far between. There's a lot of pink tape tied to branches along the way which follows the same trails and gives me comfort in between the trail markers, but that is going to disappear at some point. I'm not saying you need markers every 50' but most other trails I've been on have the trail markers at closer (read: more comforting) intervals than out at Wharton.

Also, at least twice while riding the green trail with my son, we've blown past the turnoff back to the parking lot and started heading back out before I realized and had to back track. I think there needs to be some kind of sign that indicates the turnoff back to the parking lot.
 

sj_john

Member
Wharton Trails

We added more green disks on the Batsto Fire Tower Bicycle Trail recently and plan to add more. The problem has been that there has only been a small group of people who come out for TM work and we know the trail. It has been helpful lately that some new people have started joining us and letting us know of the need for more markings.

The turnoff to the parking lot is a problem and the Forest people tried to remedy it with some signs but they are not in the proper sight line for a cyclist.
We tried to move it but we did not have the proper tools with us. We will have them the next time.

The pink engineer tape was used to mark out the trail originally.

We plan to put more orange disks on the Batsto Penn Creek Bicycle Trail.

I was reminded to start using the proper names for the trails and not the colors since there are local hiking trails with the same color slashes.

John



One thing I learned from the Park Police Officers is that they have had to make a few rescues of people recently on the green trail because they have gotten lost. You may want to pass this info along to the trail designers.

I have to be honest and say that I do think the trail markers on both the orange and green trails are a bit too far between. There's a lot of pink tape tied to branches along the way which follows the same trails and gives me comfort in between the trail markers, but that is going to disappear at some point. I'm not saying you need markers every 50' but most other trails I've been on have the trail markers at closer (read: more comforting) intervals than out at Wharton.

Also, at least twice while riding the green trail with my son, we've blown past the turnoff back to the parking lot and started heading back out before I realized and had to back track. I think there needs to be some kind of sign that indicates the turnoff back to the parking lot.
 

frickster

New Member
That's great to hear that additional markers are being considered as well as a better sign to indicate the turn-off back to the parking lot.

Post the next TM on this forum and I will try to make it. I honestly think that the Wharton trails have the potential to become some of the premiere trails in New Jersey despite other's contention that SoJo trails in general are lame!!:p
 
S

schnauzers

Guest
We added more green disks on the Batsto Fire Tower Bicycle Trail recently and plan to add more. The problem has been that there has only been a small group of people who come out for TM work and we know the trail. It has been helpful lately that some new people have started joining us and letting us know of the need for more markings.

The turnoff to the parking lot is a problem and the Forest people tried to remedy it with some signs but they are not in the proper sight line for a cyclist.
We tried to move it but we did not have the proper tools with us. We will have them the next time.

The pink engineer tape was used to mark out the trail originally.

We plan to put more orange disks on the Batsto Penn Creek Bicycle Trail.

I was reminded to start using the proper names for the trails and not the colors since there are local hiking trails with the same color slashes.

John

John,

The other problem that causes some issue, is that the trail has not been sufficiently ridden in. Not your fault, but because the trail was basically brush cut and not "raked / cut" in, there are overgrown areas. This in combination with fewer orange disks in the more remote parts of the trail can cause one to get "lost". That being said, having a proper topo map of the area, gps, and/or knowledge of standard forestry service fireroad practices can greatly help.

In Wharton, you will eventually find your way to 206, 542, one of the rivers/creeks, or the railroad tracks. It's not hard to find the way from there. However, those unfamiliar with the area they are riding in are best of staying in one place until help arrives. Especially, if you are unprepared.

Try finding someone list in 5000 square miles of backcountry out West.

I'm looking forward to riding it again on a visit next month.
 

sj_john

Member
Wharton TM

That's great to hear that additional markers are being considered as well as a better sign to indicate the turn-off back to the parking lot.

Post the next TM on this forum and I will try to make it. I honestly think that the Wharton trails have the potential to become some of the premiere trails in New Jersey despite other's contention that SoJo trails in general are lame!!:p

The next TM date for Wharton is 12/6.
We plan to work on the Atsion side of the forest. Meeting at the Atsion Ranger Station on Rt 206.
We will be reconfiguring the "Atsion Sugar Sand Road Slog Trail" (blue disk) so that it is a better ride. (This is my name for this trail and not the official one.)

This will entail relocating the blue disks from the existing trail to a new one.

John
 

argyle

Active Member
so i checked out the green trail today and i can see how it's very easy to get lost. due to the confusion of that and the fact that my father was with me, we decided to save orange trail for another day with a required early start.

all in all it's fun. not much of an elevation change ever but you can just keep going and going...and going.
 

frickster

New Member
so i checked out the green trail today and i can see how it's very easy to get lost. due to the confusion of that and the fact that my father was with me, we decided to save orange trail for another day with a required early start.

all in all it's fun. not much of an elevation change ever but you can just keep going and going...and going.

Can't beat the green and orange trails for a good steady pace in the deep forest. Agreed - not much elevation but it's tight and twisty in a lot of places which makes it fun and challenging.

I just rode with some friends at Gloucester County College on Friday and that was much more intense with lots of very steep climbs and drops, bridges and even a psycho teeter-totter that I didn't have the guts to try (one of my buddies did and made it!). It was tough riding that trail unsuspended since lots of roots across the trail everywhere. Totally different ride from Wharton and you are never out of site of the college and highways which I think takes away from the secluded feeling you get at Wharton which I really like.
 

ChrisG

Unapologetic Lifer for Rock and Roll
You go to Batsto Village which is right off of route 542 outside of Hammonton. The trail starts out and ends at the back of the parking lot.
Check out the maps in this forum to see the trails.
Which GSP exit gets you there?

I'm definitely gonna be heading to this place in the next few weeks.
 

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