Tag Archives: Wharton State Forest

Atsion in the Fall – Shamong, NJ

I spent last weekend with the Scouts, camping out at Goshen Pond as part of an open house weekend for the Cub Scouts.  We did the “A Walk Through Atsion” hike previously covered in this blog, only now featuring the colors of Fall.  It was a great day to be hiking, camping, and taking pictures, a triple threat.

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Batsto Lake White Trail – Batsto, NJ

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Batsto Lake White Trail – Batsto Village, Wharton State Forest, Washington Township, Burlington County, NJ
Distance: 4 miles
Type: loop.
Difficulty: 3 of 10.
Total score: 7 of 10.

Terrain – Hills, swamp, pine forest, and the shore of a lake.

Trailheads –  39° 38.749’N,  74° 38.790’W.  Back end of the parking lot at Batsto, furthest end from the Visitors Center.

Trailhead from parking lot.

Trailhead from parking lot.

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Mullica River Trail – Atsion to Batsto, NJ – Backpack or hike!

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Mullica River Trail – Wharton State Forest – Atsion, Shamong, Burlington County to Batsto, Hammonton, Atlantic County, NJ
Distance: 9.5 miles (can be done as a one night backpacking trip or as a day hike)
Type: One way
Difficulty:  3 of 10
Total score:  7 of 10

Terrain – forest, swamps, meadows

Trailheads – Atsion –  39°44’30.37″N,  74°43’33.55″W (next to ranger station/general store) –   (5.5 miles to campsite from here)
Batsto –  39°38’33.67″N,  74°39’18.61″W (on dirt Batsto Lake Road) (4 miles to campsite from here)

Note – you can also

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Tom’s Pond Trail – Batsto, NJ

Tom’s Pond Trail – Batsto, Burlington County, NJ
Distance: 1.8 miles round trip.
Type: Lollipop.
Difficulty: 2 of 10. – Great hike to do with kids.
Total score: 8 of 10.

Map:

Trail Map (orange trail).

Trail Map (orange trail).

Terrain – Swamps and pitch pines

Trailheads – 39°38’37.13″N,  74°39’17.00″W (Batsto Lake Road, just past the end of the old workers cabins).  NOTE – if you park at the visitor’s center lot, you’ll have about a mile to walk through Batsto Village before you get to the trailhead.  It’s a lovely walk, just be warned it makes this a three mile trek.

Standouts – Mullica River, swamps with pitcher plants, scrub pines.

Markings – Orange blazes.

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Description: A nice short hike of just over a mile, the Tom’s Pond Trail packs a lot into a little.

The trail heads out into a swamp immediately, before coming to the Mullica River, which it crosses on a footbridge.

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Start in a swamp.

Start in a swamp.

 

The Mullica.

The Mullica.

 

Footbridge over the river.

Footbridge over the river.

After the bridge, you’ll walk along the edge of this river through some lovely pine forest.  The yellow Mullica River Trail splits off to the right, but stick with the orange.  Just after this is a lovely view downstream.

Pines.

Pines.

 

Lovely little view.

Lovely little view.

From here, the trail crosses another swamp (look here for pitcher plants.  You’ll know you’re in the right spot because there is a giant educational signboard talking about carnivorous plants) before starting a short loop through the pines.

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Boardwalk over swamp

Boardwalk over swamp

 

 

Look for awesome plants.

Look for awesome plants.

Once you complete this loop, simply head back the way you came, 0.4 miles or so back to the trailhead.

Overall recommendation: This is a short one, but a beauty.  I love bridges, rivers, and carnivorous plants, so I loved this hike.  Many thanks to the wife and kid and my buddy Pat for trooping along on this one.

Check out nearby:  This is right on the edge of Batsto Village.  If you’ve never been there (or even if you have), it’s a must-see for the Pine Barrens.  Explore the old outbuildings, see the movie at the visitor’s center, and tour the mansion if any slots are available.  If you’d like to expand your hike, several loops through Batsto Lake start at the Visitor’s Center lot (will be posted at some point) or the 53 mile Batona Trail runs through the picnic area, which you can hike a section of.

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Wading River Paddle – Woodland Township, NJ

Our run - Hawkins to Bodine.

Our run – Hawkins to Bodine.

Wading River Paddle – Woodland Township, NJ
Distance: 9 1/2 miles
Type: One way
Difficulty: 9 of 10.
Total score: 10 of 10.

Terrain – Narrow, winding river with lots and lots of sharp curves.

Put ins – Hawkin’s Bridge –  39°42’51.43″N,  74°33’57.16″W
Pull outs – Godfrey Bridge –  39°41’23.22″N,  74°32’45.77″W (3 miles from Hawkins)
Evan Bridge –  39°40’29.98″N, 74°32’26.49″W(6 miles from Hawkins)
Bodine Field –  39°39’14.09″N,  74°31’29.20″W  (9 1/2 miles from Hawkins)
Beaver Branch –  39°39’2.32″N,  74°31’7.70″W (10 miles from Hawkins)
Chips Folly – No idea where this one is, never made it that far.
You can also supposedly put in at Speedwell Bridge, but it’s usually too shallow at Hawkins to really get going, so I’m not sure how one would start further up the river.  Expect to walk a lot I guess.

Standouts – Cedar swamps, pinelands, ore boat, three bridges, swimming (when it’s warm), and wildlife.
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