New Year - Hiking the Pines in Winter
Happy New Year! I celebrated the new year by hiking with the Outdoor Club of SJ yesterday at Atsion. It was seven miles of high water on the ground and spectacular beauty all around. We hiked around the Hampton Furnace area and along several fallow cranberry bogs. Passing the bogs gave me an itch to get to Whitesbog. Today, another hiking buddy with me and my dog, Blizzard, headed to Brendan Byrne State Park but the office was closed so I couldn't get a stamp for my State Parks Project booklet Passport to Adventure. But I did get to hike around one of the prettiest little ponds I've ever seen, Pakim Pond.
Back in the 70's a group of my friends and I used to rent a cabin there in the winter. So much fun.
After we hiked around the pond, we headed over to Whitesbog, not a long drive from there and hiked around the bogs, very beautiful and very cold as it was windy today and the forest blocks the wind but the bogs let it blow right over you.
Here is some background on Whitesbog and Elizabeth White, cultivator ofthe blueberry at Whitesbog:
Elizabeth Coleman White, born in 1871 in New Lisbon, NJ, was the oldest of four daughters of Mary and Joseph White, also Quakers. Mary was a descendant of another group of original settlers, the Fenwicks. The Whites owned a 3,000 acre cranberry plantation and Elizabeth took great interest in both the business and the horticulture.
Elizabeth was disappointed when her father handed over the business to a son-in-law. She turned her attention to the propagation of the wild huckleberry by offering rewards to local people for bringing the best specimens. She invited another agriculture specialist working on the same project to Whitesbog and together they developed a commercially viable berry.
Elizabeth White was an innovator in packaging and she also developed a business in holly growing and sales.
Before she died in 1954, Elizabeth had become the first woman to receive a citation from the NJ Dept. of Agriculture, to be admitted to the Am. Cranberry Assoc. and she had founded the Holly Society of America. Her home, Suningive, is a museum open to the public.
The village of