Stone Living Room - Torne Mountain - Osio Rock
Osio Rock Travel Blog› entry 912 of 1090 › view all entries
It had been really cold the past days and the days are still rather short. These are times for short hikes. Preferably in a trail network that has several linked trails that enables the hiker to add a small piece to his/her hike in case the return went faster than expected.
For my weekly get-some-fresh-air session outside of the big city I managed to get such a place. Norvin Green State Forest in New Jersey. This 17.7-km² (4,365 acres) large piece of forest is solely accessible by foot. It consists of rocks, streams, and valleys. Pretty impressive, especially so close to New York City.
The main destination for today's hike was Osio Rock at the summit of the 365-meter (1200-ft) high Torne Mountain.
Another interesting feature of this hike is the Stone Living Room; a man-made circle of chairs and sofas. All from huge stones that must have been carried in. Some say the living room was built by a cult. Others state that, in the past, people had heard chanting of the cult members here at night. The Stone Living Room is even mentioned by the website that lists all kind of mysterious, creepy and other supernatural facts of the state: Weird NJ!
I often say the New Jersey is in many ways just like The Netherlands. Sometimes things are a "bit" over organized. At the entrance of the trail I found a HUGE sign with the forest rules.
It was a cold but sunny winter day. The snow that had fallen the past days was still prominently present. The amount of snow was, however, minimal which made the hike that involves some rock scrambling still do-able. At times the snow covered the trail markers which were sometimes painted on the rocks. After some climbing I found the Stone Living Room, it looked peaceful. If it had not been so damn cold I would certainly have sat down for a moment. Instead I continued on to Osio Rock. The clear winter day gave me the promised look on the skyline. Impressive!
I was back at the car way before sunset, so I headed on another trail to a more northern viewpoint. My hike book advised to not hike this section with ice. Understandable, fortunately the snow was too less to prevent me from taking this trail.
More pictures below.