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Jakes Branch County Park and Double Trouble State Park - 2/13/11

These two parks are a few minutes down the road from each other, in Ocean County.

Jakes Branch seems like relatively new park, with a 4 mile trail in addition to the usual ball fields, tennis courts, and picnic areas that county parks usually have. Be sure to head up the center's observation deck for a view of the park from 5 stories up.

Trails are typical easy and flat pine barrens, with no real viewpoints. There is traffic noise due to being right off the Parkway.

Read the entire Jakes Branch post here.


Double Trouble's trails are actually sand roads to service the cranberry bogs. It's interesting walking around and between the bogs... but it's not really what we consider hiking. It's better for a little stroll or taking the dog for a walk, but fine for a cold weather hike too.

We did the 2.25 mile Perimeter trail and the 1.25 mile Reservoir Sawmill Loop. There is also a 1.5 nature trail.

Read the entire Double Trouble post here.

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Comment by Daniela Wagstaff on February 18, 2011 at 9:45pm

I have been wanting to try these two parks but with hiking from one to the other and back.  I came across this map which appears to show sand roads connecting the two parks.  http://njparksandforests.com/parks/docs/double_trouble_hunting_safe...  I figured doing it that way would probably make a good 10 mile hike. Does that appear doable from what you saw while you were there? Maybe that white trail you mentioned has something to do with linking the two together?  


Comment by njHiking.com on February 19, 2011 at 4:20pm

That hunting map was the one link on the site i didn't check before we went, since it was a Sunday... and of course it shows woods roads the other maps didn't!

I thought the White Trail has to be to link the parks too, and from the gps data it's right in line with the parking for Double Trouble, though it might need to skirt around some non-park property.

We did a waypoint on our gps and I put our track up here so you can see how everything relates. The red marker is the white trail.

I don't recall seeing a white trail marker in DT but that doesn't mean it's not there. And comparing the hunting map to the waypoint, it doesn't look like the white trail could lead to any nearby woods roads. You may need to take a woods road up in the west corner in order to make a connection to DT.


Comment by Daniela Wagstaff on February 19, 2011 at 7:29pm
It sure does look like it.  Thanks!  Maybe I'll give it a try next weekend.
Comment by William and Marieann Bannan on February 23, 2011 at 6:48pm
I was actually looking for somewhere to go tomorrow, and I think you just gave it to me.. I live pretty close to that area (30 minutes) and never knew that park was there.. Thank you!!
Comment by William and Marieann Bannan on February 24, 2011 at 1:10pm
I actually did Jakes Branch this morning.. very nice park. I noticed along the blue trail there seemed to be a lot of fire damage and trees down. About a week ago we had a day when winds were gusting up around 60MPH for most of the day, which probably knocked down some of these trees. The county was out with chainsaws cutting a lot of them and clearing them out. Also, the white trail is just and out-n-back to a swamp area, it does not connect the 2 parks.
Comment by njHiking.com on February 24, 2011 at 2:25pm
Thanks for the info. Really thought the white trail would be connect them.
Comment by Daniela Wagstaff on February 27, 2011 at 9:13pm
It's Pine Street from the blue Tindey Trail that goes from Jakes Branch Park into Double Trouble State Park.  However, I could find no way to get beyond the swamp flowing over the sand road I needed to take to get to the main part of Double Trouble.  Staying on sand roads (you can see them in Google Earth) in the vicinity of the power cut (the straight line on the hunting map) you would be able to cross over Pinewald-Keswick Road at the Ore Pond Canoe Access, keep left as the canoe access goes right, and that sand road takes you around Mill Pond Reservoir to the dam.  I scouted out that part from the Double Trouble entrance out - facing Mill Pond Reservoir from the end of the Reservoir-Sawmill Loop, an unmarked trail to the right goes around the reservoir to the Ore Pond Canoe Access.  It was heavenly peaceful on that road around the reservoir as the main part of Double Trouble was insanely crowded.  Here is my Jakes Branch write-up with pictures of the part of Doubl....
Comment by njHiking.com on February 28, 2011 at 9:44pm

Thanks for the update. Too bad the trail was flooded. I wonder if they just redid the printed trail map, because the one we grabbed didn't have the white trail marked on it.

The lot at DT was pretty full and we went on a cold day, I can imagine it was jumpin' this past weekend.

And we've never stumbled on a boat on a hike before, let alone two of them... hiking in Jersey always has something different.

Comment by William and Marieann Bannan on March 2, 2011 at 8:59am
The trail in the kiosk had the white trail on it, however, while I was doing the hike, there was no sign or post at the intersection with the white trail so I didn't try it because I wasn't sure if it was completed.


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