Friday, August 23, 2019

Batona Trail, Day 4: Carranza Memorial to Quaker Bridge

Another easy segment, just a bit over six miles.

And it made the car GPS system!*

We picked up where we left off two days ago, a couple hundred yards from the Carranza Memorial.

Tracks from the New Jersey Southern Railroad.

As with the prior days, mushrooms were plentiful.

Both on and above the trail.

And we can't forget our daily dose of Indian Pipe. Not as plentiful as the previous days, but still present at multiple points along the trail.

And of course, deer. We actually saw one this time. Along with a squirrel, rabbit, several towhees and common yellowthroats. Chickadees, peewees, and flickers were heard as well.

New today were street signs. Tuckerton Road goes all the way to Medford, and is even paved out that way.

Hay Road on the other hand seems to be completely within the Wharton State Forest.

And sandy all the way.

And today is the day we reached the halfway point! Woo Hoo! It was somewhere north of the Lower Forge Camp Site.

As with the other segments, the trail varied from wide open ...

... to rather narrow.

And this was the most monotonous segment so far. Pretty much the same habitat the entire route.

We also set our fastest pace on this section, as it was relatively flat with no water crossings. And not much to stop and look at.

Getting closer.

That's one way to mark the trail.

We made it to Quaker Bridge. Only 23.8 more miles to go.

The one and only Quaker Bridge (which is nowhere near the Quaker Bridge Mall, which is what you get if you google "Quaker Bridge"). Good thing they have that "One Lane Bridge" sign almost a full meter before you get to the bridge. Otherwise, you might not have enough time to react should a car be coming in the other direction. Thankfully there wasn't, and I was able to cross without incident.

(Actually, I took this picture while walking back across the bridge to Patty's car, seen in the distance, having just left my car here for when we finished the hike. When we drove out there was a woman doing what appeared to be a water sampling, and she had left her gear in the middle of the bridge. We had to wait for her to finish before we could cross. And as she hurried to move her stuff she almost dumped all of her gear.)

🚶‍♀️  🚶‍♂️  🚶‍♀️  🚶‍♂️  🚶‍♀️

This might be our last bit of the the trail for awhile, as Patty is having issues with her knee and is scheduled to see an orthopedic doctor about it. Bummer.

But as it is supposed to heat up for the next week or so it is a good time to take a break. And hopefully Joe will be ready to go when we resume.

🚶‍♀️  🚶‍♂️  🚶‍♀️  🚶‍♂️  🚶‍♀️

* Sharp eyed readers will note that while the "Batona Trail" does show up on the car GPS display, it is for the section of the trail from Quaker Bridge to Batsto, and not for the section we hiked this day. This sharp eyed writer noticed it too.

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