Mount Defiance/Glasmere Ponds Loop from Shepherd Lake

Ringwood State Park

This loop hike climbs to the summit of Mount Defiance, with panoramic views, and passes several scenic ponds.

41.136617, -74.232903

This hike follows a combination of footpaths, carriage roads (built for the estates that once dominated this area) and a mountain bike trail. Created primarily for bicyclists, the mountain bike trail - part of which is a narrow, "single-track" route - is also open to hikers. However, hikers should be alert for bicycles and, although park rules provide that bicyclists must yield to hikers,...

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Trip Reports

rate experience
March 18, 2019
0
Trail description will be updated

Interestingly, I hiked the same section of the Crossover Trail in the opposite direction yesterday, then came home and saw this comment.  The reroute in question was put in in 2016 or 2017 by JORBA (Jersey Off-Road Bicycle Association), a mountain bike group, which explains why it is geared to mountain bikers, not hikers.  The switchbacks are indeed much longer than necessary to accommodate hikers, but overall, I think that the new trail is more pleasant than the walk on the woods road that they replaced.  As you note, the new trail route is shown accurately on our North Jersey Trails map set (2017 edition).  The description of this hike will be updated within the next few days.

Daniel Chazin
March 18, 2019
3
Trail description needs updating.
The description for the beginning at end of the hike is fine. The section following the White Crossover trail needs updating. I'm guessing the mountain bikers have modified the White trail. It doesn't go down Gatun Pond, but rather meanders on the side of the hill to the northwest of the pond. It then goes to the south end of Weyble Pond, goes to the east side of the pond, and then exits the carriage road to the right. At this point, I decided to stop following the white trail, and followed the original hike description. It was accurate from this point on. So it appears that the Crossover Trail is still there and can be followed, just not with white blazes. = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = Two complaints about this hike. It appears that where the mountain bikers are maintaining the trail, there are a lot more switchbacks. It make elevation changes easier, but many seem excessively long before switching back. Second, the trail, especially the mountain bike path at the end, comes close to the Thunder Mountain shooting range. I wasn't worried about safety, but a nice walk in the woods isn't as pleasant with shotguns blasting nearby. It was a nice bright day today and maybe more people than usual were out today. The shooting range website shows that the facility is closed on Monday and Tuesday. That may be a better day for this hike. During the hunting season, I usually prefer to hike on Sundays. ========================================================================================================================================================================== 3/18/19 Addendum - I just realized that Ringwood Park is on two NYNJTC maps. The North Jersey (East) map (Avenza 115) accurately show the route of the White Crossover trail. The Ringwood State Park Map (also from NYNJTC and is on Avenza) is out of date.
jwrushman
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