Sunday, November 25, 2018

Patriots Path, NJ: Chubb Park to Palmer Park

Chubb Park - Chester Trails and Parks
Patriots' Path - Chester Trails and Parks
Tanners Brook Preserve - Chester Trails and Parks

GPS Coordinates 40.781867, -74.704023
Patriots' Path Parking in Chester, NJ

Chubb Park - Chester Trails and Parks
Patriot's Path and Tanners Brook Preserve - Chester Trails and Parks
Tanners Brook Preserve - Chester Trails and Parks
Patriots' Path West - Morris County Parks Commission

Powered by Wikiloc

HIKE DISTANCE:  8.75 miles

From the parking lot ...
... the white-blazed Patriots' Path follows a rail bed.
A bridge on the left ...
... leads to Chubb Park.
We followed the paved path around the lake ...
... then the main park road straight to ...
... where it meets up with a red-blazed Patriots' Path spur along the field towards the playground.
The woods road will come out on a paved road with no blazes where we kept right.
There is a path in the power cut that leads back to the white-blazed Patriots' Path where we started but we continued straight through the power cut...
... following the paved road.
A short distance after the power cut, the blue-blazed Patriots' Path spur crosses over; we turned right.
The blue spur ends up on the rail bed where straight ahead would take us back to our car but that is the way we would be finishing later.
We went to where the blue trail ends and the white-blazed Patriots' Path turns left leaving the rail bed.
The white-blazed Patriots' Path is now a footpath through pretty woods.
Raging waterfalls.
Uh oh.  It had rained about 2 inches overnight on top of about 7 inches of recent snow melt so the trail was quite flooded and this bridge was completely under water.
We bushwhacked around to Furnace Road where the Patriots' Path crosses over at the far end of the guardrail. 
Entering the Chester Furnace Historical Site which runs through Black River WMA.
There are nice interpretive signs along the way.
The reference map in the kiosk is hard to read and I could not find it online.
The trail passes by several historical ruins.
Central Railroad of New Jersey bridge over the Black River.
Black River
This red-tailed hawk had been sitting atop that snag but as soon as I got him in the viewfinder, he took off with no time for the camera to focus.  It did capture that red tail, though!
A gorgeous pine grove.
The trail comes out on to Tanners Brook Road.
It's a short road walk to just beyond where the pavement ends.
The Black River WMA is on the right, the left, where the trail heads, is Tanners Brook Preserve with different hunting regulations.  (Hunting is allowed on Sundays in the WMA.)
There had been so many wet and muddy spots that crossing that sunken bridge on the way back might help clean us up a bit.
I did not see it while I was taking this picture but Brodie sure did - a wild turkey in the power cut just out of sight.
The trail climbs up to the top of a hill ...
... then descends on the other side into more wetness.
Crossing over the golf course path ...
... then through Palmer Park.  (After the hike I saw on the Washington Township web site that dogs are not allowed in any town parks.  I saw no signs and there were several other people walking with dogs.)
A paved path around the park.  The Patriots' Path continues out the park entrance but we turned left and continued on the paved loop.
After looping around ...
... retracing on the Patriots' Path.
White-breasted Nuthatch
Now coming up on the sunken bridge where he had bushwhack ..ed around earlier.  My feet were already muddy and  soaking wet so...
... over we went in ankle deep and COLD water!
At the rail bed (where blue ended from earlier in the hike) we turned left on the white Patriots' Path.
It's a straight shot ...
... all the way back to the car.