Sunday, March 16, 2014

Island Beach State Park, NJ

March 15, 2014

Miles: 5.8
Time: 2 hours 30 minutes 

Parking: Interpretive Center, Island Beach State Park, Seaside Park, NJ. There was a $10/out of state car fee to enter the park. There are multiple parking lots, but at this parking lot, there were around 8 parking spots.

Rest rooms: At the Interpretive Center

Hike directions: Hiking New Jersey hike #49

Map: Island Beach State Park (also the book).

Hike description: A short trail starts at the nature center and heads towards the ocean. From there we headed south on the beach until we reached the end & turned around. There were occasional 4x4's on the beach - they drive them onto the beach to go fishing. But, otherwise it was pretty quiet. We were able to let the dogs off leash & run, just putting them on leash when we saw a 4x4 heading our way. I've seen photos from another person hiking here, where there were many, many more 4x4's on the beach.

Year to date miles:   74.4

Sign for the parking area for the start of the hike

A sign said there was no beach access. However, there is a short nature trail that starts between these two buildings.

We arrived at a T intersection, where we turned right.
Once we hit the ocean, we turned right and kept walking.

Lighthouse, which you can't walk to. Some areas near the end of the beach were fenced off with snow fencing.
In addition, one area was roped off with string (which we didn't see until we walked into - to protect some plants.

This is an out and back. Turned around once we reached the jetty, to return to our starting place.
The sign to where you leave the beach to return to the nature center says #16.

It was a super windy day, with lots of blowing sand at times.
Even the spray from the waves was blowing backwards.

There was a large plume of smoke covering the sun. We were guessing this came from the pine barrens.
Our original hiking plan was to hike in the pine barrens, but they were doing a controlled burn of the forest there.

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