Eagles’ Walk – Camp Hill – Vincentown, Burlington County, NJ
Distance: 1.7 trail miles.
Type: Interlocking loops
Difficulty: 1 of 10.
Total score: 5 of 10.
Terrain – creek, woodlands
Trailheads – Small parking lot at 39° 56.236’N, 74° 45.203’W
Directions: Located between 30 and 52 Mill Street in Vincentown, NJ.
Standouts – Rancocas Creek, lots of birds, woodlands
Markings – Nifty fleur-de-lis markers (white or blue, depending which trail you are on)
Description: Welcome to the Eagles’ Walk. To start, you will probably not see any eagles on this walk. Rather, the name refers to the top rank of the Boy Scout Program – Eagle Scout. Well done to Troop 31 of Vincentown for doing such a great job with this trail!
To all my loyal readers – If your son is not a Boy Scout, what are you waiting for? Click beascout.org and find a local Boy Scout Troop or Cub Scout Pack. (Dear BSA – while a stated purpose of my blog is to exchange product pitches for loot, you can have that endorsement for free. Love, Mike – Scoutmaster & Eagle Scout, 2000)
Anyway, you’ll be hiking through a Green Acres property in part of town that used to be known as “Camp Hill”. I wasn’t sure from the sign why it was called that, but there is a great pictures at the signboard of Civil War veterans posing on this piece of land during a reunion gathering. The trail is very well marked, very well laid out, and – for those of you (like me) that have trouble identifying any tree that isn’t a pine tree – has lots of labeled trees. Start off down the straightaway. Don’t worry, the buildings will be out of sight very soon. To the right is the old mill raceway (you knew it had to be called Mill Street for a reason), which gets pretty swampy at times. You’ll soon pass the word “Trustworthy”, then “Loyal” (the first two of the 12 points of the Scout Law for those not in-the-know) and arrive at a “T” intersection.
You can go either way, but go right anyway, because then the Scout Law will stay in order. As you continue along your way, the mill race will merge back into with the South Branch of Rancocas Creek. Shortly after this, you’ll have another trail split just before a bridge. To the left, you would cross the bridge and continue on the White “Scout Law” trail. To the right starts a new trail, the Blue Trail. If you go left, you may become a better person. If you go right, you get some nice views as you follow Rancocas Creek. Or you can do what I did and backtrack later so that you don’t miss anything. Of the two, I recommend taking the Blue Trail.
This will wind along for a bit over a third of a mile before joining back with the white trail at “obedient (7 of 12 in the Scout Law).
Thanks to magic of the internet, and me needing a slightly longer walk, you can do both trails! Let’s rewind…
You’ll walk on a small ridge, past more of the same sorts of trees, and passing “Kind” along the way.
When you reach “Obedient”, we’ve had the Blue Trail rejoin us. It’s a nice little walk to the end of the loop. At this point, someone became very interested in sticks, so I had a lot of time to check out different bits of the woods. The loop was almost done. Hang a right onto the stem of the trail, and as soon as you can list “Clean” and “Reverent”, you’ll be all done.
After our hike, we had Cheez-Its and water while sitting on the nice benches. Then we took a stroll around Vincentown, which has some awesome old buildings.
Overall recommendation: Nice, short stroll with nature, very peaceful almost-two-miles.
In the area: Do what The Pres does – take a stroll around Vincentown and check the buildings out. There is also a park with good fishing and picnicking around the corner on Race Street. The Pine Barrens are just up Rt 206 on the other side of the circle too.