Considering the hour drive required to visit Bridge Gardens in Bridgehampton, we were not incline to return home the minute we finished wandering around this beautiful 5 acre garden. Instead, we headed over to the South Fork Natural History Museum and Nature Center. The Museum was designed to instill an awareness of our natural environment through hands-on exhibits within the museum, as well as scheduled educational events outdoors.
Researching the area prior to our visit, I had mapped out a few trails that I believed we could connect together to generate a decent walk. Arriving at the museum, we bypassed the museum, choosing instead to head towards the trail behind the building. There we found an interpretive trail close to the museum. Beyond the trail was a field with a mowed path(Vineyard Trail?) meandering around some ponds until it finally wandered off into the woods to intersect with the Long Pond Greenbelt Trail.
I guess I hadn’t done due diligence in my homework because I didn’t expect such an expanse of field. However, it was a beautiful day and we needed the walk so we set out across the field. As we approached Black Pond we heard a loud chorus of peepers letting everyone know that spring had arrived. The ensemble immediately ceased singing when we moved closer to the edge of the pond.
The Vineyard Trail eventually entered the woods. We knew that we would stroll a short time here and would cross the road to reach our next trail in Poxabogue County Park. As expected, when the trail intersected with the Long Pond Greenbelt Trail we took the trail leading towards the street, but when we reached the pavement we discovered there was no where to cross without ending up on the train tracks. Without a map and not sure which way to go to find a way around the tracks, we opted to head back across the field and drive to our next destination.
We soon located Poxabogue County Park; a 26 acre preserve with about a 1/2 to a mile trail skirting the ponds. The trail traversed a small field before entering a typical pine barrens woodland. The pines shortly gave way to more hardwood growth as the path neared a wetland area. In both wooded areas there were plenty of sticker bushes to be found.
Some side trails provided access to the pond. We paused and admired the area, listening to the peepers and whatever birds could be heard over the cacophony of the pond life. Another side trail provided access to an area where the ponds (Poxabogue Pond and Little Poxabogue Pond) touched when conditions were right. The main path skirted the larger pond before depositing us back into the field that led back to our car. It was another fine hike.