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Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 01:40 PM
As i mentioned at our first meet in Jackson, Sav and I have been thinking of a meet up north.

Timothy recommended a specific group camp sight in Stokes State Forest, New Jersey. Timothy, which group sights did you like?

Sav has also camped there before, and he recommended the regular (not group) camp sights numbers 13 and 14. Each holds 6 people, so that's 12 of us total, and they are adjacent to one another.
Sav also recommended the group camp sights in Worthing State Forest, New Jersey, which is just south of Stokes State Forest
(they are actually next to one another, and the reason there needs to be 3 seperate state forests for the same big forest, including High Point State Forest which is north of stokes, escapes me)

All 3, High Point, Stokes, and Worthington, are pretty much the same place, for those of you who are not familiar with the greater Kittitany Ridge area and forest.

If anyone has any experience with any of these camp sights or any place in the forest that you recommend, please post up!

I am thinking of doing this the weekend of April 13, 14 and 15 (Friday, Saturday, Sunday), arriving on friday and leaving on sunday.

The time and place are up for discussion, and any contribution is more than welcome!

lets have another great meet everyone!

Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 02:13 PM
after looking at the map and descriptions of the sights at Stokes, i think either sight D or sight H is our best bet. they are described as.

"Site D
Max30 people and 10 cars-more private, woods on 3 sides. behind cute little Brook.
1 long table, 4 short tables, 2 fire rings, 2 grills,farther from restrooms"

"Site H
Max 10 people and 4 cars, wooded site, 1 long table, 1 grill, 1 fire ring"

Given that we are hoping for a good attendance (more than 10 people) i would say sight D is our best bet if we choose Stokes.

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 02:23 PM
It may be hard to get a site on such short notice as the place fills up with trout fishermen!!! I used to camp there for opening day trout season and getting even a platform is tough unless you start in Feb at the latest. Not sure if they even have ground sites? I know they have platforms, open lean to's and closed lean to's with wood burning stoves!!!!! Never camped at high point or worthington. The gap might be better as I mention before stokes and the other state parks are STRICT!!! And watching the vid of the first outting I'm sure we'd attract attention!!! The Gap being federal is poorly enforced as they aren't as well staffed and have to enforce the Pennsy side too. Also unless things have changed you can't reserve a site unless you drive up and do it in person! No snail mail or online reservations! That weekend is my wedding anniversary! I remember telling my wife to be that we needed to chage our date from 4/7 to 4/13 because of opening day, that yr it rained like hell and they pushed back opening day to the 13th! My wedding party was fishing the flatbrook and almost didn't get to the church on time!!!! 28 yrs next month!!! She still shakes her head when I tell her what this site is all about! Guess I haven't changed much!!!! Not that it matters to me but all three of those places are no alcohol! Probably no bows or slingshots either! I do like that forest and hunt deer near there on the federal land near Millbrook.

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 02:25 PM
Site D sounds great if we get that many people! The brook sounds cool is it tuttle brook or turtle brook I can't remember? It's stocked I think.

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 02:29 PM
my map isn't showing site letters only symbols! Where are you looking Grey?

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 02:31 PM
We used to get a site right near culvers lake I don't see any there on my map. They may have changed a lot as there seems to me to have been a lot more sites

Timothy
03-26-2012, 02:35 PM
Here is what I know of "group" camping in these parks-

Stokes site 'H' it the only one that has trees *in* it, although side 'D' is also very secluded and has some good trees around it. The rest of the group sites at Stokes are grassy fields. Site "B" at Worthington is also nice (but all the group sites in worthington are a bit small for more than maybe 8 shelters). The group sites at state parks/forests are $3/person/night now instead of a flat fee per night.

The parks aren't overly strict about the number of people in a group site as long as it is not too much higher than the stated limit and everybody is paid for. You can add people after the reservation is made without difficulty.

Another option is "River's Bend" group campsite which is part of the Delaware Water Gap. We would probably want site 5 (it has trees- the others don't). This is $30/night up to 25 people.

Stokes and the River's Bend usually provide cut wood for free, but it will need to be split by us. Stokes and Worthington have running water and showers. River's Bend has (modern) pit toilets and a hand operated pump (very cold, clean water though.)

A large part of stokes is hard to access due to closed roads. This includes the Kittatiny Ridge around Sunrise Mountain. There are some Copper Mines (gated) near Worthington that could be fun to go find as well as the Sunfish Pond Natural Area on the top of the ridge along the Appalachian Trail.

I'm pretty familiar with the whole area so if you have any questions the web sites for these parks can't answer feel free to ask me.

Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 02:42 PM
I just called, and Stokes is booked solid. so Stokes is out of the question.

I like the idea of River's bend, because i would like to do the next meet up along the Kitittany Ridge. I've hiked all over the water gap too, an i loved it.

BTW, ive been to sunfish pond, and its the coolest place ever. I wish we could camp there, but there is a no camping policy =(

Sav
03-26-2012, 02:45 PM
Gents,
I love the State Parks as much as the next guy, but what i liked about Laurel Pond is that is was bushcrafty, secluded, no restrictions. Another good thing is that its was in the middle for everyone. Since we have a free night would you all want to go there again for meet 2? or i can start the recon for a similar private land up north or down south jersey?

Ranger and I will recon the Site with the owner so the fuzz doesn't show this time....

Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 02:59 PM
What does everybody think of Camp Taylor?
Its a private camp ground at the base of the Kitittany ridge, just south of the appalachian trail, and just west of the water gap. The best thing about it is that it is adjacent to the Lakota Wolf Preserve, where there are real wolves on a reservation.

Hearing the wolves at night is the coolest thing ever.

Timothy
03-26-2012, 03:21 PM
Might be expensive unless you can swing a deal for us.

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 03:27 PM
I'm up for whatever works best, I like north Jersey and the area being discussed but as Sav mentioned the area you guys used is PRIVATE and appeared secluded. Not sure what's available as far as private sites in the area around the gap? I think trees are a pretty important feature for those with hamocks and a big plus for tarps etc.

Sav
03-26-2012, 03:42 PM
That sounds great too.

Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 03:50 PM
Might be expensive unless you can swing a deal for us.

depending on how many people come, it would be around 15 bucks a head.

They are closed til the last weekend in April, However, i explained to them that we are a minimalist group that doesnt need bathrooms or anything really but water. They said that they turn their water system on right before may, to ensure that the pipes dont freeze. Weather permitting, we may be able to go a week early if the weather has been warm enough the previous week. They told me to call them a week before that weekend.

If we can swing this, and i can convince them to let us camp a week earlier, we would be the ONLY PEOPLE IN THE WHOLE PLACE!

I suppose they would let us camp that weekend if we brought our own water, but that would be a pain for 2.5 days.

I have camped there before, and the camp sights we used and the adjacent ones were totally wooded, and very secluded from the rest of the camp ground. I think it would be ideal.

I'll keep everybody posted.

jeffthecheff
03-26-2012, 05:23 PM
im diggin the sound of the lakota wolf preserve, do you have any links??

Grey Ranger
03-26-2012, 05:33 PM
Lakota Wolf Preserve
http://www.lakotawolf.com/

Camp Taylor (the adjacent camp ground)
http://www.camptaylor.com/

Google map location of Camp Taylor (Lakota Wolf Preserve is a 5 minute walk from where my friends and i camped last time we were up there)
http://maps.google.com/maps?oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&q=85+Mount+Pleasant+Road,+Knowlton+Twp,+NJ+07832&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x89c487307cc2f79f:0x9f55a8ec17266066,85+Mt+ Pleasant+Rd,+Knowlton,+NJ+07832&gl=us&ei=EO9wT7rNKIa80QHgzKHvBg&sa=X&oi=geocode_result&ct=title&resnum=1&ved=0CCEQ8gEwAA

vagabound
03-26-2012, 07:09 PM
Sounds great as long as we dont get eaten. Also, i'd ike to thank you guys for working so hard to put these together. Bushcraft is not easy for us due to jersey's population density and the rules that accompany it, but your determination to persevere despite the complicating circumstances is an inspiration onto itself. I hope that i will be able to make this next meet.

Have you guys thought about round valley recreational center or wharton state forest. Neither are in the area youre looking at but one has "primitive" campsites and the other "wilderness" sites. Just thought i'd throw it out there.

jeffthecheff
03-26-2012, 07:23 PM
Lakota Wolf Preserve
http://www.lakotawolf.com/

Camp Taylor (the adjacent camp ground)
http://www.camptaylor.com/

Google map location of Camp Taylor (Lakota Wolf Preserve is a 5 minute walk from where my friends and i camped last time we were up there)
http://maps.google.com/maps?oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&q=85+Mount+Pleasant+Road,+Knowlton+Twp,+NJ+07832&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x89c487307cc2f79f:0x9f55a8ec17266066,85+Mt+ Pleasant+Rd,+Knowlton,+NJ+07832&gl=us&ei=EO9wT7rNKIa80QHgzKHvBg&sa=X&oi=geocode_result&ct=title&resnum=1&ved=0CCEQ8gEwAA

this looks great, any chance we could go on a wolf watch while we are there??

wingnuts
03-26-2012, 07:35 PM
I could give or take the wolf preserve but the camp site sounds great if we're the only ones!!! What kind of access do we have to get water in? Can we drive close to where we need to bring the water? How far would we have to travel to refill containers? Could someone get a 35-55 gal drum that we could fill from smaller containers and multiple runs? Just thinking out loud.

JerseyJohn
03-26-2012, 09:06 PM
Could always load the cars up with water and take turns being the water-mule.

Before summer starts, mondays and tuesdays are easiest for me to get off. Once summer is in full swing, I usually don't get two days off in a row until September. If anybody else is open to weekday camping, let me know. Plus side is that most campgrounds are deserted during the week. In my younger days my friends and I would winter camp in state parks during the week, just because they weren't patrolled. In our favorite spot they left the gate open and camping was free, I guess. At least, nobody ever showed up and told us to get out. We were respectful, cleaning up our garbage and hauling in our own wood and water, and staying away from other groups. The great part was ten people stretching out in the group sites when nobody else was there, usually around January.

I'd be willing to trek north, but I'd need at least a month's advance, off season dates, and a whole lot of luck. Weekdays are easy for me, and Wharton, while still about 50 minutes north of me, is a lot closer than the North Jersey sites you guys are usually talking about. Bass River is a fun place I used to go as a kid, anything near Batsto historic village I'd be down for. I've always wanted to do the Batona Trail. It supposedly has primitive sites in one spot, but I've never been there. Primitive for that area sometimes means hair driers and continental breakfast is not included.

Grey Ranger
03-27-2012, 12:10 AM
I definitely want to do a meet in Warton, Jerseyjohn. I think this one is going to be up north though =(. I'm going to try to do them monthly though, so May will have to be down south!

Wingnuts,

We can literally drive up to the camp sight. If we had someone with a very large (and i mean really big) container that we could put potable water in, i would imagine we would be able to take advantage of the early camp sight.

I don't have a drum like that, but if we could find one, perhaps with a nozzle on the bottom like a giant gatorade cooler, that would be perfect. I could probably convince them to let us camp a week before opening day, because the water issue would be solved, and hey, business is business.

the only thing with the camp sight is that we ARE NOT allowed to bring in firewood. They are pretty strict about controlling any invasive pests, because it really is a beautiful forested piece of land.

Grey Ranger
03-27-2012, 12:12 AM
this looks great, any chance we could go on a wolf watch while we are there??

It would depend on if there was one scheduled. I would have to look into that, but i would very much like to do that.

I will definitely call the preserve if we decide to camp at Camp Taylor and see if that is possible!


Sounds great as long as we dont get eaten. Also, i'd ike to thank you guys for working so hard to put these together. Bushcraft is not easy for us due to jersey's population density and the rules that accompany it, but your determination to persevere despite the complicating circumstances is an inspiration onto itself. I hope that i will be able to make this next meet.

Have you guys thought about round valley recreational center or wharton state forest. Neither are in the area youre looking at but one has "primitive" campsites and the other "wilderness" sites. Just thought i'd throw it out there.

I am definitely looking into Round Valley, The problem is that they dont have large camp sights, and the ones we would want are a pretty far hike from where one can park. We have a probable attendees who might have trouble getting up there. I will definitely look into Round Valley as well, though.

wingnuts
03-27-2012, 06:30 AM
As far as I'm aware round valley sites are hike or boat in only! Boating in is kind of cool. We used to have 2 guys in a tin cartopper take everyones gear and the rest of us would hike in unburddened and meet them at the suite. Can't remember site numbers! (I'm old and these recollections are from my youth!!! I've been doing this bushcraft stuff before it was called bushcraft)!!! I dont even own that boat anymore as I now kayak (cheaper to run!)

wingnuts
03-27-2012, 06:31 AM
The contain with spigot is exactly what I envisioned Grey! I'll ask around at work about a suitable container

Timothy
03-27-2012, 09:30 AM
Bringing our own water didn't work out badly- I would be OK doing that again if we were car camping and able to get the campground all to ourselves. However there would still be the issue of toilets.

Grey Ranger
03-27-2012, 10:25 AM
Bringing our own water didn't work out badly- I would be OK doing that again if we were car camping and able to get the campground all to ourselves. However there would still be the issue of toilets.

I know that there is a stream that runs through part of the campground down from the mountain. It isn't that far from where we camped (and we camped in the very back of the place) I would imagine if if runs down from the mountain, its free enough of chemical contaminates that boiling would be sufficient enough to make it safe to drink. I can ask about that when i call them again.

when i was there they're were porta potties centrally located near several of the nearby camp sights, but if the place isnt open, they may not be there. I would be fine just going in the woods though.

armyfirepilot
03-29-2012, 10:30 PM
Hello All,

I'm new to this site and I missed out on the first meeting in Jackson, New Jersey....pity, I live in Jackson. Personal commitments kept me from attending but, I'm down if there is going to a future meeting.

jloden
03-29-2012, 11:17 PM
As far as I'm aware round valley sites are hike or boat in only! Boating in is kind of cool.



I am definitely looking into Round Valley, The problem is that they dont have large camp sights, and the ones we would want are a pretty far hike from where one can park. We have a probable attendees who might have trouble getting up there. I will definitely look into Round Valley as well, though.

G.R. - they do have group campsites at Round Valley... there are 8 group campsites that accomodate up to 25 people each. They're actually the very first 8 sites on the campground trail. However, as wingnuts noted they are hike or boat in only, and it's 3 miles in from the trailhead & parking area to the campsites. They have pit toilets and water available next to the campsites (pump), as well as lake access.

Round Valley is a nice spot but the hike in is moderately strenuous and I can foresee that being a turn off for some folks and a problem for anyone with mobility or health issues - unless they have a boat anyway :p

I'm not going to be able to make this meet since I'm attending the HW meet in April the next week, but hope you all find a good spot and have fun. Hopefully I'll make it to another NJ meet sometime!

Grey Ranger
03-30-2012, 10:12 AM
Thanks for clearing that up Jloden!

Round Valley sounds perfect. Its closer than a lot of the places that have been suggested up north.

I can probably borrow a canoe to get people to the camp sight as well.

What does everyone think/does anybody have a canoe we could use to ferry gear and people?

jloden
03-30-2012, 10:23 AM
Oh, one other thing: as I understand it fires must be in the fire pit - each campsite has a stone & metal fire ring - and they're not supposed to be more than chest high IIRC (basically, just don't go building a fire you can see from space).

That's just an FYI... I've never had a problem and wouldn't expect to with a group from BCUSA anyway, but I thought I'd mention it. Believe me, I'd take a BCUSA group over most of the folks I've seen camping in RVR the times I've been there :rolleyes:

My personal favorite was the group of drunken carolers (in October) singing every Christmas song they could remember until they ran out of lyrics at around midnight.

Timothy
03-30-2012, 12:01 PM
The 3 mile walk isn't an issue for me, but there is another option in the area. Voorhees state park is right near there and they have two group camp sites which you can drive right up too. Much less of a "wilderness" setting than RVR though.

jeffthecheff
04-01-2012, 01:16 AM
hey guys, i've been busy this week and haven't been following what's going on. are there any solid details yet for the next meet? what camp and what dates? and i think it would be nice if we could do a fri/sat/sun instead of just 2 days. can't wait to see everyone again!

Grey Ranger
04-02-2012, 10:43 AM
I've been known to do some drunken caroling myself... lol.
But i reserve that for Christmas time.

I wont be able to make the time that i suggested, the weekend of the 13 14 15th of april.

What weekend works better for everyone?

Also, the more i read into it, the more i'm liking the sound of round valley.
I think i might try to take a trip up there this week or weekend to check it out. Anybody free and care to join?

Timothy
04-02-2012, 10:38 PM
We could move it back a weekend to the 20th-22nd. That Sunday is Earth Day too.

wingnuts
04-03-2012, 06:07 AM
Just chkng in, still alive, mostly lurking on occasion after the malarky!

bushhippie512
04-03-2012, 06:38 PM
Hello All; i missed the Jackson trip - figures, Scouting weekend again. Do we have a plan for April? Round Valley is GREAT! Paddleing is great and the hike although long isnt that bad. All the group sites i have used have more than one fire ring [many more in some]. Also, Penders Boat House in Clinton will deliver canoes to the campsite boat ramp for a honest price. Let me know if i can help. looking forward to meeting you all.

jeffthecheff
04-03-2012, 06:46 PM
20-22nd works for me!

Timothy
04-05-2012, 10:22 AM
20-22 works for Mark (Hoyt) too (he asked me to post because he hasn't had time to be online recently.)

Also- Mark is going to be bringing venison for me to cook a big pot of stew. If others can bring some vegetables to contribute that would be a big help. Of course how much we need depends on how many people go so don't rush out to the store yet!

Timothy
04-06-2012, 09:16 PM
Anything going on with this? Why dont we just go back to the Laurel Pond place again? We get a free night I think so that would keep the cost down and the land was pretty well suited for our needs. Even the water situation wasnt a big issue.

With other places either being booked up or still closed this seems like our best option if we still want to do something this month. We can hit Stokes in the post-season after all the scout troups and family weekends are done with. Maybe do the wolf place in May or June after they are officially open? And Wharton/byrne generally have "primative" sites to spare on most weekends in the summer.

Grey Ranger
04-07-2012, 02:58 PM
All the places i've checked out are booked in April. I havent looked into round valley. A few people have mentioned Wharton state forest down south. I would be down to go there.

I am really busy this month, so if someone wants to throw a date out there and you guys agree on a location, i'll try to make it.

Sav might want to take point on this one, because weekends for me are pretty booked with work for the foreeeable future, and i need the cash.

Sav
04-07-2012, 03:17 PM
Ranger....sure bud...

Fellas....I here round valley is a 6 mile hike in? Can anyone confirm...its seems as far as.meets go, people like to bring gear to discuss, trade etc...and a drive up scenario is key. But hiking in and going minimalist could be cool too...

As stated the good camp spots are always booked well in advance. Wharton in the pine barrens is supposed to have secluded primitive group sites...Ranger and I are going to recon asap...

I am psyched to have another meet ...
Sav...

P.S. we can always use the location of the first meet? Its free....

Timothy
04-07-2012, 07:00 PM
I here round valley is a 6 mile hike in?
3 miles, not 6.


Wharton in the pine barrens is supposed to have secluded primitive group sites
Most are not secluded but almost all of them are very primitive. The primative areas are all $3/person/night. The enforcement of their regulations as to campsite occupation are pretty loose- as long as you pay for the number of people you have your "group" can use pretty much any site or collection of sites. They have little to no tolerance for alcohol though and the state police often show up in their 4x4's to check after dark (or even block the roads on the way in and make you explain why you are there...)

Mullica River and Lower Forge are out in the woods with a short hike from the nearest "road" (and by "road" I mean something legal to drive on, but you will **NEED** a 4x4 with good ground clearance and the ability to ford as much as 2 feet of water if it rained recently- or while you are in there!!!)

Lower Forge is possible to get to most times without any "offroading" required. Take Quakerbridge Road into the woods from the parking area by the Atsion ranger station. Once you cross the Quaker Bridge turn left (upstream). Drive as far as you feel comfortable going, or until you get to where they have the road blocked and posted "no vehicles". The campsite is 1/4 mile further up the road (1 1/4 miles from Quaker Bridge).


The other camp areas you can drive up to. During the weekend there is almost always space, but you aren't going to be alone in any of them.


we can always use the location of the first meet? Its free....
I think we should. It is something we can just go do without any more planning. And we're running out of time to do any real planning if we're going to meet on the 20th...

jloden
04-07-2012, 08:02 PM
Ranger....sure bud...

Fellas....I here round valley is a 6 mile hike in? Can anyone confirm...its seems as far as.meets go, people like to bring gear to discuss, trade etc...and a drive up scenario is key. But hiking in and going minimalist could be cool too...


Yeah, as Timothy pointed out it's just about 3 miles.

The campsite trail is 6 miles long and campsites start at the 3 mile mark and go to the end. However, the group campsites are all clustered at the beginning of the trail so it's basically 3 miles to where you guys would be situated. And of course, you can always boat in in which case ferrying heavier or bulky items is more reasonable. Some campsites have direct shore access, but none of them are very far :)