Jungle Habitat, West Milford

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Jungle Habitat, West Milford

Postby mergs » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:53 am

Riders,

There is state property in West Milford that is administered/managed by Ringwood SP (but is part of Long Pond Iron Works SP) and is commonly referred to as "Jungle Habitat". Its about 800 acres and there is an existing trail network there.

Image

The name comes from infamous drive through safari park was located here in the mid 70's. Wierd NJ often talks of this place... more about that can be found here:
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=ju ... gle+Search

Thanks to Art and Ellen White of RVCC I have been in contact with the Park Superintendent of Ringwood SP and they are very interested in increasing multi-use traffic in the park, and this includes mountain biking. JORBA is only too happy to provide assistance here!

As of today, mountain biking, hiking, hunting, equestrian XC skiing, snowshoeing etc are all legal uses (anything non-motorized). Therefore once the spring melts this snow you might want to head up there and explore for yourself.

I will be up there in the early spring to help map and GPS the existing trails and then work with the Ringwood SP staff to clean up, maintain and hopefully improve the trail network there.

I will be approaching the West Milford Recreation Committee (which includes some members of the Town Council) for their support. Early contacts are favorable as at least 2 councilmen are on record wishing to promote the park and improve/increase use of the trail network for biking, hiking, etc.

This is an exciting opportunity for bikers because although its not a new park, its an unused park and we're getting involved with the park from the beginning. Once an assessment is made, I'd like to begin a regular trail maintanance schedule and regualr group rides there.

Stay tuned... I'll post more as get more. 8)

Google Map of the area:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=jungle+habitat,+west+milford,+nj&ll=41.127276,-74.338002&spn=0.011427,0.020127&t=h

Directions can found by typing in "Airport Road, West Milford, NJ" on http://maps.google.com or http://maps.msn.com. Here are some direct links to these:

Google: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=airport+rd,+west+milford,+nj

MSN: http://maps.msn.com/Map.aspx?L=USA&C=41.13017,-74.34119&A=12&P=|41.13017,-74.34119|1|Airport+Rd%2c+West+Milford%2c+NJ+07480|L1|&TI=Airport+Rd%2c+West+Milford%2c+NJ+07480
(you'll need to copy paste this one above)
Last edited by mergs on Fri Oct 27, 2006 1:56 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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I'm in

Postby NJ Jess » Sat Feb 18, 2006 7:03 pm

Yo Jeff & friends. I love Junge Habitat as a kid. I wish it would still exist, but NJ has a "tough crowd." Jeff, please email me with updates re: this area. I would love to help with TM hours and promoting the area. NJ Jess
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Postby mergs » Mon Mar 13, 2006 7:44 am

I spent the weekend hiking and riding the park and mapping the existing network of roads in the park. Here is the end result:

Image

What I found: existing trail network is mostly paved roads, about 5 miles of them. This will not excite the expert biking community but this is an outstanding place for beginners or riders of hybrid bikes. In addition this could be a very fun place for parents to bring thier kids! Because it is paved almost any bike can be used and there are relics of the old Jungle Habitat still around. I've marked these items on the map (see Otter Slide, Aviary, Tiger Pen, etc.)

CAUTION: the relics can be dangerous and you should use caution... in fact, children should be supervised closely. At some point the park should be cleaned up and have potentially dangerous items carted away. The park today is in a rough state, but that is part of the "eerieness" of Jungle Habitat.

I will present all of this to the rangers at Ringwood and then see what steps they wish to take for this park.

Edit: I will also be presenting this information to the West Milford Recreation Committee tomorrow (which includes 2 of the 4 councilmen). They are extremely pleased to see someone from the mtn biking community (vis a vis JORBA) actively involved in this project.
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Postby mergs » Fri Oct 27, 2006 1:56 pm

Approximate Boundaries, according to NYNJTC:

Image
Last edited by mergs on Mon Nov 20, 2006 9:40 am, edited 3 times in total.
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WikiPedia Entry and other Jungle Habitat hits on Google

Postby mergs » Fri Oct 27, 2006 2:08 pm

you know you're something when you've made it onto wikipedia ;)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jungle_Habitat

Some known sites about Jungle Habitat history and the relics there:

WierdNJ:
http://www.weirdnj.com/stories/_abandoned05.asp

Yahoo Group:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/junglehabitat/

Blog about JH
http://idflux.typepad.com/idflux/2004/0 ... bitat.html

JH Revisited: scans of the original Safari Guide Book
http://home.ptd.net/~dcronin/index2.html

interesting factoids and scans of original pamphlets:
http://www.song3.com/jungle_habitat__is ... azing_.htm

good images of some relics
http://www.funnelnet.com/darren/jungle.html

more images:
http://www.abandonedbutnotforgotten.com ... abitat.htm

JH Postcards:
http://www.abandonedbutnotforgotten.com ... _cards.htm

http://forum.aboutnewjersey.com/showthread.php?t=207
( check out the last post by "Maz" )

Lost In Jersey:
http://www.lostinjersey.com/abandon/junglehabitat.html

NJ Explorers:
http://www.njexplorers.com/habitat.html
(fair amount of pics, looks like same site as funnelnet.com)
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Postby mergs » Mon Nov 20, 2006 9:41 am

This is a map of the park as it looked in '72, from an apparent scan of original Jungle Habitat Safari Guide Book:

Image

As you can see, the original entrance to the park is on Greenwood Lake Turnpike. You would do the first half of the safari (this would be the park closest to the current airport). Once the first half was done, you'd park in the massive parking lot, have lunch, stroll the pedestrian area for a while, etc..

Afterward, you'd return to your car, and do the second half of the safari, which included the area currently near the summit, and then exit onto Greenwood Lake Turnpike. This means admission was most likely paid for at the north end of the park. The ticket booth at the tunnels was probably for additional attractions such as the Kids Railroad, etc.
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Postby mergs » Fri Dec 22, 2006 10:13 am

This is a scan of an article in Wierd NJ #26 (May 2006)

Image

Since they've been forced to remove the sign, perhaps this person would be willing to donate this sign to the real Jungle Habitat and we could erect it on the original structure below? That would be cool. 8)

Image
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whoa...

Postby DBoyd » Mon Jan 01, 2007 12:29 pm

Hey guys! First post... thought I'd keep it on topic..

I just asked my Mom if she had ever gone to this place and she said no...

BUT, she does know all about it. She said that when Warner Brothers left it, there was a whole big controversey due to the treatment of the animals when the funding was stopped. She said that the animals were just left there to die. Not really a pleasant thought when you are biking through there! :shock:

Just thought I'd add my 2 pennies...

Thanks for the info Sean on the website! I'll def. be helping out and become an active member of the community!

:arrow: :idea: Ride idea?? Maybe it's been done?? Does anyone know if (and how) I could approach getting to Ramapo Mountain from Ringwood via trails, or even from Waywayonnda...

I have always wanted to do this but I have never had the guts to figure it out on my own. Suppose I could with the new GPS, but I am not sure just yet. Well, maybe there could be a topic for this.... :wink:



Thanks again Sean for the info this passed Saturday! Great website and I'm looking forward to using it and meeting up with you guys for some awesome rides!!!!
-dboyd-
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Re: Jungle Habitat, West Milford

Postby BonsaiMTB » Thu May 06, 2010 11:31 am

Just curious...How many miles of single track are there in Jungle Habitate? and whats the terrain like????
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Re: Jungle Habitat, West Milford

Postby mergs » Tue May 11, 2010 8:00 am

chris, we have 10 miles or so of new single-track (it might actually be more, I'll have to check with someone that does the mapping) and its tight, twisty and technical. there are harder places to ride but its quite challenging to a broad spectrum of riders. i'd call it all-mountain terrain. ss are ridden here, but most people ride 4-6" travel bikes.
What would we do without trails? Let's not find out. http://www.IMBA.com

"Cycling tracks will abound in Utopia" - H.G. Wells
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