Day 66: Bogs, Barqs, and Burros

Thursday May 16, 24.9mi/40.1km

Brink Road Shelter (1320.2) to Secret Shelter (1345.1) (NJ)

New Jersey is interesting. I’ve read in the guidebook that it was swampy, and on that front it didn’t disappoint. Bogs everywhere. Good morning, mud!

Most of the day was on the same ridge as yesterday, with fine views on both sides.

The views were made more accessible by another fire tower. This one is on Mt. Culver.

And even better, the rocks in the trail seem to be dwindling!

When I got to another bump on the ridge, it was called Sunrise Mountain, and had a cool pavilion with benches to sit and watch the views.

What a fascinating sign. Ha!

I stopped for lunch at a shelter, which was unoccupied except for the large black ratsnake…who didn’t want company. So I sat outside in the hot sun.

Bob caught up, and another hiker named Three Mile joined us for lunch. The hike after lunch was steep downhill, and many trees were used as handholds.

In the afternoon, I stopped at the High Point state park office, where they give thru hikers a free soda pop. Barqs root beer is always a good choice!

And they even let thru hikers throw out their rubbish… but only thrus, haha.

Another highlight of today was hiking to the highest point in NJ, which is not so creatively names High Point. It’s only 1800ft tall, and is accessible by car, but has a cool obelisk in top.

Good views from the base of the tower.

The last few miles of the day we dropped off of the ridge one last time, and walked thru some farmland.

Which of course was even more muddy and had many bogs.

The destination for the evening was Secret Shelter, a cabin on private property owned by a former thru-hiker. It had water, a privy, electricity, and even a surprise burro!

Watching the sunset over the farm fields. And the burro.

Three-Mile arrived after we finished dinner, and young couple arrived too and setup their tent. We sat and talked and entertained ourselves watching the Burro, who was not shy around hikers!

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