Hello again and Happy New Year !I'd like to apologize for the delay in getting this update in, but the holidays are an insanely busy time for me. Between 60 hour work weeks and family obligations, I had little time ( or energy for that matter) to spend on my journal. Excuses aside, I'd like to pick up where I left off. Today's update features the southeastern mainland section of the region, featuring eastern mainland Lower Township, southeastern Middle Township, and the western edge of the tidal marsh seperating the mainland from the barrier islands.
First stop is the Cold Spring tile . Cold Spring is a fresh water spring located just to the west of US Highway 9. In colonial times, drinking water was obtained by lowering a sealed vessel on a rope through the brackish water to the bottom, where the cap was removed and the
jug filled with fresh water. Today, the site is marked by a small gazebo. Mill Creek flows from the spring to Cape May Harbor, and is crossed by the Garden State Parkway around mile marker 1. Lake Laurie, another small fresh water pond, is a bit north of Mill Creek.
Further north is Erma, also in Lower Township. The Garden State Parkway crosses Jones Creek near mile marker 3. Directly west of the Parkway is Week's Landing, where fishermen and crabbers can launch small boats. Due to the low height of the Parkway bridges ,Jones Creek is impassable to boats at high tide. Folks must wait until the water drops to squeeze thier craft beneath them. North of Week's
Landing are Lepor's Pits, an abandoned sand and gravel mine which has since filled up with groundwater. There are numerous pits like
these along the Parkway, and though I haven't found any solid evidence to back this up, I suspect that sand and gravel mined there was used to create the raised land through the marshes over which the parkway traverses.
Continuing north, we come to the Rio Grande tile. The Parkway splits and travels on either side of Taylor Lake just south of Exit 4. The town of Rio Grande lies west of the Parkway.
NJ Route 47 travels through the marshland over a raised causeway. This is the primary route to the resort community of Wildwood ( see upate 7) Hardy scrub pine , junipers and beach plums grow along the raised roadway. Most trees are killed off by salt water, but the land
sits high enough for thier roots to gain some purchase in the sandy soil.
Running south of Tempe Creek and along the north shore of Richardson Sound is the former railbed of the Pennsylvania RR Seashore Line, abandoned since the mid 1970's . Parts of the causeway have since crumbled into the marshes, and in many places have been overgrown by small trees and bushes, It can be seen from the Wildwood causeway to the north as a line of trees extending into the marsh.
Well, that's it for this update. I'd like to ask you to be patient waiting for the next one, since hand drawing in the numerous creeks and
ponds for over one hundred square miles of marshland is tedious work . Thanks for stopping by, and as always, your comments are encouraged.