Jurassic Trail  LbNA # 613

OwnerWingfoot    
Placed DateJun 2 2002
CountyBergen
LocationOakland, NJ
Boxes8
Found By(hidden)

Clues

Jurassic Trail Letterbox Series (8)
Mahwah & Oakland, Bergen County, New Jersey
Placed by Wingfoot at various times between 2002 & 2006

Hunt these boxes at your own risk.

I finally finished this series; it only took me four years. There are four sets of clues being posted. One set, the entire series is a point-to-point hike requiring two cars, and the other three are loops (North, Central, and South) that will allow someone to find all the boxes in smaller shorter hikes. Youíll need to scroll down to get the clues for the loop trails.

Clues: Easy (Except for TRICERATOPS which is Difficult)
Terrain: Challenging
Time: 8 Ė 10 hours (Estimated)

This long distance all day hike includes babbling brooks, ruins, glacial erratics, a waterfall, and multiple viewpoints, that highlight New Jerseyís ever-disappearing natural areas.

IMPORTANT NOTE:
The planter of these boxes DID NOT plant this series in a single day and HAS NOT completed this as a point-to-point hike. I am only estimating the time I think this hike requires. I would ask that if you do complete this hike (all 8 boxes) you time yourself and email me with the results so I can post them to the clues to give other boxers a better idea of how long this hike will take them. This isnít a race, itís to help out your fellow letterboxers.

While this is a long hike, there are plenty of places to return to civilization. There are roads and other parking areas that you will pass that will allow you to do so.

Be prepared, while some folks are used to longer hikes, the length of this series may lead hikers into uncharted territory. Stamina, sore muscles and joints, and unforeseen changing weather could all play a factor. Youíll need to bring food and plenty of water. Also hiking boots, a hiking stick, and a map of this trail (Trail Conference Map 22) system are highly recommended.

There is bushwhacking involved. Plan on some off trail hiking as well as some difficult blazed trails.

Bears have been seen in this park.

Iím not trying to discourage anyone from attempting this series, but I want to make sure no one foolishly sets out to complete this series thinking they can do it in a matter of a couple hours. YOU WONĒT BE ABLE TO. This is an all day event. Allow 8 to 10 hours for this series.

Where to park your cars:
Route 287 to Skyline Drive, exit 57. In Oakland, shortly up Skyline drive on the left is the parking lot. Park first car here then proceed to R amapo Reservation off of 202 in Mahwah.



This is a dinosaur themed series.

JURASSIC TRAIL

From parking lot head to trails crossing the bridge. Immediately after bridge on left is an unmarked trail. Take this trail. Youíll stay along the river for a short time. Trail will merge with the orange trail. Take orange trail left staying along the river. Eventually youíll move away from the river and orange trail will cross a small bridge and youíll shortly come to ruins on the left of trail. Keep following the orange trail. On right will be a small stream. Trail merges with fire road, stay with orange trail going left. Eventually youíll reach the MacMillan reservoir on right of trail. Stay with orange trail as it begins to climb. Eventually youíll see the start of the yellow-silver trail of left of trail. Take the yellow-silver trail as it begins to climb. Eventually yellow-silver trail will cross a small log bridge. From end of bridge go 27 paces at 250 degrees to dead tree. In a crevice at the bottom of the tree, behind a rock is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in. Pick up trail going the way you didnít come.

BRACHIOSAURUS

Staying on the yellow-silver trail youíll eventually pass the start of the red trail on right. Keep on the yellow-silver trail. Now youíll hike through a valley with a bunch of glacial erratics. Some of these boulders are huge. Eventually youíll reach a set of ruins on the left of trail. Cross bridge on road and pick up yellow-silver trail on right of road. If you want to check out some small waterfalls you can bushwhack up the stream a bit. Staying on the yellow-silver trail youíll do some small climbs. Eventually on right of trail will be a boulder covered with dark green moss. This four foot long two foot high boulder is right next to the trail. From boulder go 20 paces at 110 degrees. There is an old stump there with two small trees on the left of the stump. Behind the farther small tree, under a rock, is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in. Pick up trail going the way you didnít come.

VELOCIRAPTOR

Important Note: On 8/26/11 it was reported that a rattlesnake was spotted within a couple feet of this boxes hiding spot. Please be vigilent when hunting this letterbox.

Yellow-silver trail will then climb some more. Eventually youíll come to the yellow trail. Take yellow trail right off of yellow-silver trail. Youíll begin to climb some more. Eventually youíll reach an excellent viewpoint on right of trail. There will be a sign there with blazes for the yellow and orange trails with the letters HTZ on it. Go to campfire, catch your breath and relax and enjoy the view. This is one of my favorite viewpoints for NYC; you might even be able to make out the arches for the George Washington Bridge. Now go back to the sign with the HTZ on it. Go 12 paces at 10 degrees. Under a big rock in a rock crevice is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in.

TYRANNASAUROS REX
Pick up the orange trail. Orange trail will meet up with the Green Leaf Trail. Take the Green Leaf Trail right, not the merged trail. Shortly youíll come to a small mound with a blazed tree going diagonal across the trail. From blazed tree go 8 paces at 340 degrees to a small rock mound that contains what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in.

STEGOASAUROUS

Continue along Green Leaf Trail. Eventually youíll come to the Cannonball Trail. Take a left on the merged Cannonball/Green Leaf Trail. Very quickly trail will split again. Take a left on the Cannonball Trail. Eventually Cannonball Trail will meet up with yellow trail. Go left taking the merged Cannonball/Yellow Trail. Eventually youíll come to a huge blazed tree that has fallen across the trail (that you'll easily be able to walk under). From blazes on fallen tree go 30 paces at 350 degrees to a tree. At itís base, under a pile of rocks is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in.

BRONTOSAURUS

This was the 100th letterbox planted in New Jersey.

Now pick up the merged trail the way you didnít come. Eventually youíll come to the red trail. For another nice viewpoint take a right on the red trail. Itís only 5 minutes. When finished pick up the merged trail the way you didnít come. Shortly trail goes along Skyline Drive for about 50 feet and then reenters woods. When trail splits, take the yellow trail. When you come to the road pick up the white trail. Donít cross the road. Continue down white trail until you come to a clearing offering a view. There will be a large rock on the left side of the trail with a blaze on it. From the blaze go 39 steps at 100 degrees. There will be a split rock; under a rock in the split is what you are looking for. Use a stick, just in case. Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

TRICERATOPS
Checked and clues updated on 06/10/06

This is a very difficult box to find. I was going to rehide it. But after three years in the same spot, the box was completely dry and I still like the spot. So I decided to keep it where it was with some additional clues to make the box easier to find.

Continue along white trail. Cross Skyline drive and pick up white trail on the other side. When you come to the blue trail go right. When you arrive at Ramapo Lake go over the bridge. Shortly down the fire road the red trail begins on the left. Take red trail. Pay careful attention to the blazes. After a climb youíll a viewpoint on the left of the trail. Very shortly the trail makes a sharp right turn. The turn is almost a U turn. A little bit down the trail from the turn you will see a two dead trees on the left of the trail, the left one has a very faded painted red blaze and the right one has an old faded red metal circle blaze. If you start going down hill, you've gone too far. From the dead trees turn around and go back down trail 12 paces. You'll see a blazed tree on the right of the trail that would be used if you were coming in the opposite direction. Right before the blazed tree go 50 paces at 225 degrees to the false end of a rock formation. Don't go all the way to the end of the formation. From that vantage point you should be able to see Pompton Lake. To orientate yourself (see note below): Pompton Lake should be at 230 degrees, a small camp fire should be at 160 degrees, and the left edge of a man made plateau should be at 260 degrees. From there (see note in next line) go 25 paces at 130 degrees. Note there is a 4-foot drop off along these 25 paces, be very careful. Behind a tiny 6 inch stump there is a natural rock cavity with a square shoebox size rock covering the opening. Within the cavity is what you are searching for. Use a stick, just in case. Replace rock after stamping in.

NOTE: From orientation point, turn around and go back 8 paces to the end of the rock you are on. The shoebox-sized rock should be visible at 140 degrees. There is a 4-pronged sticker bush growing from the cavity where the letterbox is.

ADDITIONAL CLUE:
Posted 06/10/06
If you are unable to locate the box, try this. From the viewpoint area, there is a rock you should be able to sit comfortably on. The rock has a small depression in it that would hold moisture if it had rained recently. The rock is pointy. If you place your compass near the pointy area the reading should be approximately 200 degrees. From that rock go 27 steps at 160 degrees. Count each foot fall as a step.

Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

PTERODACTYL
Checked 06/10/06

Now continue along red trail the way you didn't come. When trail meets up with yellow trail, take the yellow trail, not the merged red-yellow trail. Again pay careful attention to the blazes, as there are some tricky areas along this trail. Trail merges with fire road; continue to follow it until trail restarts on left up the fire road. You'll come to a large glacial erratic. There will be a blazed tree to the left of the rock. From blazed tree continue going down trail 53 paces. On left of trail will be two boulders. Behind the left one, behind a rock is what you are searching for. Use a stick, just in case. Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

To get back to the parking lot go back to the fire road, taking it the way you didn't come. When fire road forks, take right fork and enjoy the walk along Ramapo Lake back to the bridge. Cross bridge and pick up blue trail on the right. Blue trail leads back to parking lot.

Email Wingfoot with the time it took you to complete this series.



Jurassic Trail Letterbox Series South (3)
Ramapo State Forest
Placed 06/02/02 by Wingfoot
Oakland, Bergen County, New Jersey

Hunt these boxes at your own risk.

Clues: Easy (Except for TRICERATOPS which is Difficult)
Terrain: Challenging
Time: 3 plus hours

This is a dinosaur themed series.

Also, there are other letterboxes in this area that this series can be combined with for a longer hike.

There is bushwhacking involved. Plan on some off trail hiking as well as some difficult blazed trails. Bears have been seen in this park.
The centerpiece of Ramapo Mountain State Forest is Ramapo Lake, which was formerly known as Rotten Pond by the early Dutch settlers. Take your time and enjoy the many viewpoints these trails provide.

Directions:
Route 287 to Skyline Drive, exit 57. Shortly up Skyline drive on the left is the 1st parking lot for the Ramapo Mountain State Forest. Pass this lot and continue going up Skyline drive. At the top of the mountain there is a parking lot on the left.

BRONTOSAURUS

This was the 100th letterbox planted in New Jersey.

Start at white trail across street from parking lot. Continue down white trail until you come to a clearing offering a view. There will be a large rock on the left side of the trail with a blaze on it. From the blaze go 39 steps at 100 degrees. There will be a split rock; under a rock in the split is what you are looking for. Use a stick, just in case.

Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

TRICERATOPS
Checked and clues updated on 06/10/06

This is a very difficult box to find. I was going to rehide it. But after three years in the same spot, the box was completely dry and I still like the spot. So I decided to keep it where it was with some additional clues to make the box easier to find.

Continue along white trail. Cross Skyline drive and pick up white trail on the other side. When you come to the blue trail go right. When you arrive at Ramapo Lake go over the bridge. Shortly down the fire road the red trail begins on the left. Take red trail. Pay careful attention to the blazes. After a climb youíll a viewpoint on the left of the trail. Very shortly the trail makes a sharp right turn. The turn is almost a U turn. A little bit down the trail from the turn you will see a two dead trees on the left of the trail, the left one has a very faded painted red blaze and the right one has an old faded red metal circle blaze. If you start going down hill, you've gone too far. From the dead trees turn around and go back down trail 12 paces. You'll see a blazed tree on the right of the trail that would be used if you were coming in the opposite direction. Right before the blazed tree go 50 paces at 225 degrees to the false end of a rock formation. Don't go all the way to the end of the formation. From that vantage point you should be able to see Pompton Lake. To orientate yourself (see note below): Pompton Lake should be at 230 degrees, a small camp fire should be at 160 degrees, and the left edge of a man made plateau should be at 260 degrees. From there (see note in next line) go 25 paces at 130 degrees. Note there is a 4-foot drop off along these 25 paces, be very careful. Behind a tiny 6 inch stump there is a natural rock cavity with a square shoebox size rock covering the opening. Within the cavity is what you are searching for. Use a stick, just in case. Replace rock after stamping in.

NOTE: From orientation point, turn around and go back 8 paces to the end of the rock you are on. The shoebox-sized rock should be visible at 140 degrees. There is a 4-pronged sticker bush growing from the cavity where the letterbox is.

ADDITIONAL CLUE:
Posted 06/10/06
If you are unable to locate the box, try this. From the viewpoint area, there is a rock you should be able to sit comfortably on. The rock has a small depression in it that would hold moisture if it had rained recently. The rock is pointy. If you place your compass near the pointy area the reading should be approximately 200 degrees. From that rock go 27 steps at 160 degrees. Count each foot fall as a step.

Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

PTERODACTYL
Checked on 06/10/06

Now continue along red trail the way you didn't come. When trail meets up with yellow trail, take the yellow trail, not the merged red-yellow trail. Again pay careful attention to the blazes, as there are some tricky areas along this trail. Trail merges with fire road; continue to follow it until trail restarts on left up the fire road. You'll come to a large glacial erratic. There will be a blazed tree to the left of the rock. From blazed tree continue going down trail 53 paces. On left of trail will be two boulders. Behind the left one, behind a rock is what you are searching for. Use a stick, just in case.

Please hide box hidden from view after stamping in.

There are several ways to get back to the parking lot. I recommend going back to the fire road, taking it the way you didn't come. When fire road forks, take right fork and enjoy the walk along Ramapo Lake back to the bridge. Cross bridge and pick up yellow trail on the right. Yellow trail leads back to parking at the top of the mountain.


Jurassic Trail Letterbox Series North (3)
R amapo Reservation
Placed 05/07/06 by Wingfoot
Mahwah, Bergen County, New Jersey

Hunt these boxes at your own risk.

Clues: Easy
Terrain: Challenging
Time: 3 plus hours

This is a dinosaur themed series.

Also, there are other letterboxes in this area that this series can be combined with for a longer hike.

JURASSIC TRAIL

From parking lot head to trails crossing the bridge. Immediately after bridge on left is an unmarked trail. Take this trail. Youíll stay along the river for a short time. Trail will merge with the orange trail. Take orange trail left staying along the river. Eventually youíll move away from the river and orange trail will cross a small bridge and youíll shortly come to ruins on the left of trail. Keep following the orange trail. On right will be a small stream. Trail merges with fire road, stay with orange trail going left. Eventually youíll reach the MacMillan reservoir on right of trail. Stay with orange trail as it begins to climb. Eventually youíll see the start of the yellow-silver trail of left of trail. Take the yellow-silver trail as it begins to climb. Eventually yellow-silver trail will cross a small log bridge. From end of bridge go 27 paces at 250 degrees to dead tree. In a crevice at the bottom of the tree, behind a rock is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in. Pick up trail going the way you didnít come.

BRACHIOSAURUS

Staying on the yellow-silver trail youíll eventually pass the start of the red trail on right. Keep on the yellow-silver trail. Now youíll hike through a valley with a bunch of glacial erratics. Some of these boulders are huge. Eventually youíll reach a set of ruins on the left of trail. Cross bridge on road and pick up yellow-silver trail on right of road. If you want to check out some small waterfalls you can bushwhack up the stream a bit. Staying on the yellow-silver trail youíll do some small climbs. Eventually on right of trail will be a boulder covered with dark green moss. This four foot long two foot high boulder is right next to the trail. From boulder go 20 paces at 110 degrees. There is an old stump there with two small trees on the left of the stump. Behind the farther small tree, under a rock, is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in. Pick up trail going the way you didnít come.

VELOCIRAPTOR

Yellow-silver trail will then climb some more. Eventually youíll come to the yellow trail. Take yellow trail right off of yellow-silver trail. Youíll begin to climb some more. Eventually youíll reach an excellent viewpoint on right of trail. There will be a sign there with blazes for the yellow and orange trails with the letters HTZ on it. Go to campfire, catch your breath and relax and enjoy the view. This is one of my favorite viewpoints for NYC; you might even be able to make out the arches for the George Washington Bridge. Now go back to the sign with the HTZ on it. Go 12 paces at 10 degrees. Under a big rock in a rock crevice is what you seek. Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in. To finish your loop hike take the merged yellow-orange trail, not the orange trail. When yellow-orange trail splits take the orange trail. Stay with orange trail all the way back to the parking lot.



Jurassic Trail Letterbox Series Central (2)
Ramapo State Forest
Placed 05/20/06 by Wingfoot
Oakland, Bergen County, New Jersey

Hunt these boxes at your own risk.

Clues: Easy
Terrain: Challenging
Time: 2 - 3 hours

This is a dinosaur themed series.

Directions:
Route 287 to Skyline Drive, exit 57. Shortly up Skyline drive on the left is the 1st parking lot for the Ramapo Mountain State Forest. Pass this lot and continue going up Skyline drive. At the top of the mountain there is a parking lot on the left.

STEGASAUROUS

Start at yellow trail across street from parking lot. Shortly Yellow Trail will merge with Cannonball Trail. Take the merged Yellow/Cannonball Trail. Trail goes along road for about 50 feet pick up trail when it reenters the woods. Shortly youíll come to the Red Trail. As this is the only chance youíll get for a viewpoint and it only takes 5 minutes take Red Trail on left of trail. When finished pick up the merged trail the way you didnít come. Eventually youíll come to a huge blazed tree that has fallen across the trail (that you'll easily be able to walk under). From blazes on fallen tree go 30 paces at 350 degrees to a tree. At itís base, under a pile of rocks is what you seek.

Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in.

TYRANASAUROS REX
Stay with the merged trail the way you didnít come. Eventually trail will split. Take right fork which in the Cannonball Trail. This part of the trail needs to be reblazed, but you shouldnít have too much problem figuring out where the trail is. Eventually Cannonball Trail will come to the Green Leaf Trail. Take a right on the merged Cannonball/Green Leaf Trail. When trail splits go right on the Green Leaf Trail. Eventually youíll come to a small mound with a blazed tree going diagonal across the trail. From blazed tree go 8 paces at 340 degrees to a small rock mound that contains what you seek.

Please hide box completely hidden from view after stamping in.

Now continue along Green Leaf Trail. It will merge with the Orange Trail. Take the merged Green Leaf/ Orange Trail. When trail splits stay with Orange Trail, it will take you back to the parking lot. You will pass thru Camp Glen Gray. When you go through the camp the blazes get more spaced out along the fire road.