The Boardwalks and the Invisible Bears

May 28, 2018

Destination: Stealth Campsite at Mile 1360.2 Today's Miles: 22.80

Start Location: High Point State Park HQ Trip Miles: 1360.20


View over the wetlands at Pochuck Boardwalk, NJ
I woke up in my nice comfy bunk at Mosey’s this morning at 5:30, and then snoozed until quarter till. I could hear Mosey in the kitchen making breakfast.

I could smell it too! I got up, grabbed a cup of coffee, and then chatted with Mosey while I ate pancakes, eggs and bacon. It was awesome! It is seriously worth staying there. Mosey makes everything easy and convenient, and she is full of trail knowledge and good stories. She told me some pretty hilarious stories about her years working in the postal service too. One was about how she wore a shirt or something to work about “going postal” and they made her take it off - something like that. Mosey was taking us back to the trail in two waves. First she would take Dude, Happy Feet, and me back. As we were eating, we heard these crazy, loud, and annoying bird noises from outside. Apparently her neighbor has game hens of some type. They were super loud, and as Mosey put it, “they’ll talk over you.” 


We got back on the trail somewhere around 8:30. I fell back and hiked my own pace. The rain yesterday had cooled things down nicely. It was a beautiful morning for hiking! It was cloudy but not supposed to rain. I hiked along and eventually heard voices behind me. It was Traveler, Candyman, Honey, Moon and a guy whose trail name I keep forgetting. They passed on and eventually walked into Unionville. I ran into Sugarfoot right before the road to Unionville. He was farther in front of me than I originally thought!  We made introductions and talked for a bit, and then he went into Unionville with the rest of the crew. I hiked on alone, enjoying the weather and the day. 


I passed through the WallKill National Wildlife refuge, which was very flat trail and an awesome section of wetlands. I saw cranes and redwinged blackbirds and rabbits there, as well as other birds. I later walked along the Pochuck Boardwalk. There was quite a bit of boardwalk today, over marsh/wetland areas. It was a very cool new addition to the scenery. The Pochuck Boardwalk was a very long section (several miles I think) and it was a very nicely constructed, tourist boardwalk. There were tons of day hikers and tourists there. The boardwalk weaves through the wetlands. Despite the people traffic, I really enjoyed this section. 


After the boardwalk I climbed up towards a popular local viewpoint. On the way up I stopped at a spring to filter water. I had run into Dude earlier and we decided we would probably pack water from this spring and look for s place to camp. A lady coming down the hill asked me if I had seen the baby bear. What?! I told her no, but that i wished I had. Dude showed up at the spring and then we continued north. We ran into two ladies who told us they had just seen a bear about 5 minutes prior. Dude has not seen a bear yet either, so he and I snapped to attention and immediately tried to hurry down the trail quietly to see this bear. I thought for sure we would see it! We didn’t. We did find a stealth campsite though. As we set up, Happy Feet walked into camp and asked “did you see the bear???” ARRRRRGGGHHHHH! She had a picture of it. Dude and I couldn’t believe it - how had we missed it? Even the loud day hikers saw bears today....


It was a good and long day! I really enjoyed the hiking and scenery today. Tomorrow I will leave NJ and enter NY. I was grateful for the beautiful cool weather, the amazing wildlife, the easier terrain, and good hiker company today. Tomorrow will be fun!


Postscript:


#1 - Koko I hope your journey is going well! I bought a new toothbrush in your honor yesterday :-). I look forward to catching up on your hike!

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