Monday, January 18, 2016

Hiking Hartshorne Woods and Sandy Hook

On Sunday I helped scout a hike for the NY Ramblers. We took the bus out to Highlands, New Jersey, and hiked through Hartshorne Park and then out to Sandy Hook.*

Hartshorne Park is a county parks with extensive trails. In addition to holly-filled woods and views of the Atlantic, it is also home to Lewis Battery, a WWII installation. This made for a variety of sights - and the holly (plus some laurel) made it greener than your typical local winter hike.

From there we walked to Twin Lights, a lighthouse with a small museum. Only one of the two towers is open, except during the annual Lighthouse Challenge in October. One of the two Fresnel lens is on display in the nearby powerhouse.

The last leg of our hike took us on a State Route 36 bridge to Seabright/Sandy Hook. We only walked a short way down the beach, in part because there was a brisk wind, and in part because we thought it was later than it was. I have to admit I wasn't sorry to turn back - if you ever want to turn me mad, just trap me on a ceaselessly windy beach.

We took it a little easy, hiking about 10 miles. The final hike will likely be longer, as it's simple to add more miles either in Hartshorne Woods or along Sandy Hook. I'm uncertain of the elevation gain, since the battery on my watch was going, but my guess is about 300 feet; there were some hills in the park, but nothing killer.

*If this sounds familiar, note that this is not the Sandy Hook of recent shooting notoriety, but a National Recreation Area.

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