Friends –

We were so disappointed that the change in plans due to the weather meant that some of you were not able to join us for last week’s tree planting. Although Saturday’s weather was not quite as rainy as expected, a look at the Flatbrook confirmed that canceling the Turtle Field Trip for the sake of safety was a good call. Friday’s torrential rain had already done the damage and the stream was flowing too high and fast. We were able to get a start on the tree planting late on Saturday afternoon and wanted to share the happy news that the seven trees delivered last week have been successfully planted on Piney Point.

Jerry Schierloh had mapped out the planting locations, wisely taking into account the broader spread of the White Pines as opposed to Red Pines. The SOC staff dug the holes using heavy equipment and transferred the trees from the truck to Piney Point when they arrived. Our small, hardworking detail of Friends members made sure each tree was seated properly in its respective hole, backfilled, raked, mulched, and then carefully checked each tree for any bark damage. Jerry returned a few days later to seal the few small scrapes that were detected.

The SOC staff will be watering the trees on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The trees’ first week at SOC has been perfect—with nice cool temperatures—and today they are getting a good soaking. Let’s all send nurturing thoughts and hope that they will grow tall and strong! We will, of course, continue to send you updates on their progress. Let’s hope the news is all good!

Don’t forget to save Columbus Day Weekend for the Friends of NJSOC Friends and Family Weekend! This will be our next “official” get-together, and if the summer weather cooperates (not too hot and dry), we hope to plant the next group of trees then. That’s in addition to the usual fun camp activities and the Turtle Field Trip we’d hoped to do last weekend.

And since we hate to wait that long to see you, we may have a mid-summer activity as well. Just a one-day thing—maybe a hike to Sunrise Mountain or informal gathering—with the option to stay overnight for those coming from a distance. We’ll fill you in on that as the plans develop. We’re looking at the weekend of July 29th if you want to pencil it in on your calendar.

PS: Did you remember to renew your membership? If you’re not sure, drop us a line and we’ll check for you! You can renew right here at or by sending a check to:

Friends of NJSOC
1 Wapalanne Rd.
Branchville, NJ 07826

Membership levels and dues can be found at