Yesterday late afternoon we were on our way to a camp site near the Carranza Memorial in the Pine Barrens.
The ride there was pretty easy going; light traffic, great weather, but limited daylight. I would hate to try to find the campsite in the dark and from what other ADV’ers have told us; there’s a lot of sand in the Pine Barrens. At one point we were approaching a cranberry farm at dusk. I think it was an Ocean Spray factory of some sort and we couldn’t help not to notice the number of deer that were in the fields. We need to get to the campsite ASAP! We were getting closer to our destination. How do I know? We’re riding in sand, but it wasn’t that bad. It felt more like hard-packed dirt and we managed to get to our campsite just before nightfall. Before entering the campsite, I didn’t expect anyone to be there, but to our amazement; it was a party. There was a horse riding group along with a Jeep group camping out here tonight. They even hired a storyteller to tell the story about the Jersey Devil. After setting up the tent, we ate dinner, but not your typical dinner I might add…we had an MRE (Meal, ready to eat)!
For those of you who don’t know, MREs are what US soldiers eat when they’re out in the field. One package has everything you need to have a warm meal. You don’t even need fire! It has this pouch thingy where you add water and it heats up whatever you put in it. You can use it to heat up the main course, make coffee, or stuff it under your shirt if the weather is too chilly.
|They even come with a little bottle of Tabasco sauce to spice things up|
Shortly after dinner Amanda and I decided to start a fire. It was impossible…or maybe we just don’t have the skill. We had everything! Pine needles, twigs, wood, but we just couldn’t get it going. We even had our neighbors come on by to help us out. They were a bunch of high school’ers all from the same auto class. They brought over every flammable chemical they had in their Jeeps to try to get this fire going. At one point I started to faint because of all the chemicals I was inhaling! Luckily Amanda was close by and I was able to pull myself together by holding onto her so I wouldn’t collapse. Eventually we gave up and walked over to the much larger campfire where the story was being told.
We noticed refreshments were being served so Amanda went over to investigate. It just so happens that one of the members from the Jeep group was a fellow ADV’er and had read about us in our thread. Talk about coincidence! He goes by the user name Enormiss and offered to ride with us the next morning in the Pine Barrens and into Philadelphia. We were also meeting up once again with Aphazia, Eboola, and BushwickKLR from LI/NY.
|Amanda trying to rekindle the fire|
|Yeesh! You weren't invited in our tent!|
|Hope we don't startle the horses|
The Meteor Run was happening in and around the area and so what seemed easier yesterday on the trails now became treacherous this morning. I found it difficult to shift into 2nd gear with the fear of dumping the bike and having something break; I wish we didn’t have all this gear to lug when doing this type of riding for the first time. When the trail became narrower, the ruts in the sand became deeper. Another rider was coming towards us and Amanda tried to steer the bike over the berm, but the sand was too fluffy and she low-sided it. Luckily everything was fine and we both agreed we didn’t need to push our luck and so we all decided to get off the trails and make our way to Philadelphia. Sand, you might’ve beat us this time, but we’re coming back for a rematch at some point!
|Guess what these guys are making?|
|You betcha! Philly cheese steaks!|
|Yo Adrian! We did it!|
|Re-enacting a scene from Rocky III|
|Getting "bruced" in the Philly tag-o-rama|
Riding in the sand.
Jersey Devil in the woods.
I need a blow torch!