Last Sunday I went on a mission to find the other side of the path through the Bergen Arches.

I walked overland, following Hoboken Avenue towards the Grove Street area. More specifically, I was following a kind of cavern filled with greenery. There were layers of highways. I looked off the edge of one bridge and saw more cars below me. And beyond those, I could see tops of trees and a sense of depth: the Erie Cut.

So I followed it and found some interesting things on the way. This is truly junkspace.

There were a couple of bridges where I had a really good view. A pedestrian on one of these bridges could easily see an explorer of the arches making her way through the overgrown gorge.

Eventually I found the end: On the property of Dickinson High School. You cross to the far end of the parking lot, walk down a steep hill into a lower lot, and then turn sharply left into a wooded path with weeds growing in a line down the center.

After a distance, the road forks. To the left, I saw a reddish-brown shape amongst the weeds.

A piece of rusted machinery?

A human head. He was holding so still, it took me awhile to figure that out.

I gave a wave to show I meant no harm and took the path to the right. After two bridges, this brought me to the point I had stopped before: A branch blocking the way, overgrown with a three-leaved vine, maybe poison ivy. From the back, it seemed a lot less threatening, and I stepped through unscathed, into familiar territory…

…except for the new mural.

I’m happy to complete the path and to find it’s not a dead-end. This is the route for the pilgrimage.

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