Saturday, September 30, 2017

Patriots' Path, NJ - Sunrise Lake to Jockey Hollow

Patriots' Path - Morris County Parks Commission
Lewis Morris County Park - Morris County Parks Commission
Morristown National Historical Park - National Park Service

GPS Coordinates 40.78896, -74.54602
Parking lot on Mendham Road across from Sunrise Lake.  There is additional parking right across Mendham Road on the Sunrise Lake side which might be a better place to park since it eliminates having to cross Mendham Road where cars come around extremely fast.

Patriots' Path East - Morris County Parks Commission
Lewis Morris Park Trail Map - Morris County Parks Commission
Morristown National Historical Park Trail Map - National Park Service
Powered by Wikiloc

HIKE DISTANCE:  6.9 miles

First of all, new hiking dog introductions.
This is Brodie.  He was found as a stray in Jersey City, NJ and taken to Liberty Humane Society where I adopted him last Tuesday.  He is about 3-4 years old and appears to be a mix of German shepherd/husky/Australian Cattle Dog and whatnot.  He is VERY sweet and has not shown any aggression whatsoever.  Whew.
We have been hard at work all week pounding the local pavement in preparation for today's hike.  I needed to fill in a gap of the Patriots' Path so that was our goal today.
Crossing Mendham Road from the parking lot.
Sunrise Lake
No reaction whatsoever to a jogger.  Nice!
Sunrise Lake at Sunrise
Coming around the other side of Sunrise Lake.
Brodie's first attempt at clearing blow downs
He wasn't quite sure what to do at first.

Leaving Lewis Morris County Park and entering Morristown National Historical Park.
Crossing the road at the soldiers' huts.
Brodie's first bear encounter.  That little black dot up ahead is a bear crossing the trail and he looked much closer than in the picture.  He stopped, started to climb a tree, looked at us, then decided that was a bad idea and continued on perpendicular to the trail.  That was a wise choice on his part as it allowed him to continue on with his day and allowed us to continue on with our hike.  Good bear.
Shortly after ...
... what I would guess is Brodie's first deer sighting since I doubt any live in Jersey City.
Here is where we left the Patriots' Path and turned right on the Mendham Road Trail to Wick House.
Mendham Road Trail.
Coming up on Wick Farm.
Wick Farm
There were lots of people in the garden and I found out later from a local man I was talking to that they were picking the veggies to sell today only.  Darn it.  I was too early.
Continuing through the Wick Farm parking lot and around the barn to ...
... a break spot where I could hitch Brodie to the fence.
Bison jerky.  Yum.
Continuing on to that mowed path up the hill.
Loving this whole hiking thing.
After crossing a paved road we turned left on the green Aqueduct Trail.
That brought us back to the Patriots' Path where we retraced the rest of the way back.
I was on the bridge when Brodie took the low road and I thought he might cross in the creek like Shawnee used to do but no ...
... he ended up retreating and joining me on the bridge.
Coming back up on the soldiers' hut area.
Brodie's consistent reaction to loud, running children seems to be make note of them ...
... then carry on.  I like that, too!
No reaction to bikers.  How did I get this lucky?
He needs some training and maturing but the traits that cannot be changed are very, very good so there is lots to work with.
Not getting those paws wet.  Maybe he will have a change of heart next summer when it is really, really hot.
Crossing back over and Mendham Road was very busy at this time of day.  A fire engine actually stopped for us to cross so I would assume they were not in a hurry.
Resting after a nice hike.