Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Typical Tuesday

When: Tuesday, March 31st, from 9:30am to 1pm
Where: Bearfort Ridge Trail, near Hewitt, Passaic County
What: Hiking with my sister
Weather: Perfect (High 50's-Low60's, light wind)

Once again, the NY/NJ Trail Conference provided my sister and I with a guidline for a wonderful hike. I hadn't been past Ringwood State Park in probably more than 10 years. The drive along Wanaque Reservoir and over Monksville Reservoir is probably my favorite in the State. After catching a glimpse of Greenwood Lake, we parked at a turn-out on the side of Warwick Turnpike and put on our packs.

The first half-mile of this hike was an ass-kicker. We hiked a steep incline which eventually landed us on Bearfort Ridge. For the next couple hours, we followed the ridge, which provided us with some stunning views of Monksville and the Wyanokies. The Ridge eventually took us to the shores of Surprise Pond, which made for a great place to have lunch.

To anyone taking this hike, be aware that the orange-blazed trail leading back to the start of the hike can be a little tricky to follow. There are a few stream crossings and another handful of places where the trail has been washed out or flooded. Getting around these obstacles and locating the next blaze can be mildly difficult, so just make sure that you stay on the trail and are always looking for the next blaze.

The Trail Conference estimate this hike at four and a half hours. It took us a bit less, but we tend to walk at a good clip. There weren't as many photo opportunities on this hike, so we finished rather quickly.

It must be said that the weather on this early Spring day was perfect. We could not have asked for a better day. The rest of the week was questionable at best, but this particular Tuesday was beautiful. Tuesdays tend to be a special day in my family, and this one held true to form.

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