Tourne County Park is a general purpose park comprised of 561 acres with 10.7 miles of trails. This park offers recreational opportunities throughout all seasons: hiking, fishing, horseback riding, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and sledding. There are reservable picnic sites and a shelter, and to complement your outing, you can reserve an athletic field. What makes this park so appealing is hikers who climb to the top of the Tourne are rewarded with a panoramic view of the New York City skyline. The highest elevation is 897 feet. Other points of interests include Denture Rock and Mouse Cradle Rock. You can also access the Rockaway River for canoeing and kayaking. Digital trail maps are available online.
On any day, you can bike, hike, jog, or take a leisurely walk. You will find people taking a stroll with their canine companion. Challenge yourself and hike on the Decamp Trail that leads you to the top of the Tourne, as well as down the alternate side. As you walk on the trail, enjoy the variety of wildflowers along the gentle Emily K. Hammond Wildflower Trail with 250 species of native plants. From April through mid-June, a mile of winding paths through varied terrain offers a setting in which to learn more about woodland flowers and ferns native to the eastern United States. Named after the botanist, Emilie K. Hammond, who aided in its development with the cooperation of local garden clubs, the trail is easily reached by entering the Tourne at Powerville Road.
Search for Denture Rock, the 54-ton Mouse Cradle balancing rock, or Elephant Rock. Wander along the stream in the Eleanor Hinrichsen Memorial Bird Sanctuary and sight some of your favorites, including the Pileated Woodpecker.
Take the children and family along to have a day of fun in the fresh air at the children’s play area. Bring the fishing rods and enjoy the newest section of the Tourne, the Rockaway River Access area.
Picnics and Athletic Field: Plan a fun picnic for family and friends. In the nearby atheltic field, toss a Frisbee or play catch. There are picnic tables and charcoal grills.
If your group is larger than 25 people, take advantage of reservable picnic site that includes a shelter, picnic tables, and charcoal grills. You can also reserve the atheltic field to organize a softball or soccer game. For reservations, please call 973.326.7631, option 1.
The Park Commission acquired its first parcel of land on July 24, 1958 and opened the park for public enjoyment in 1960. The name ‘Tourne’ is derived from the Dutch word meaning ‘lookout’ or ‘mountain.’ The Tourne is the only remaining undeveloped fragment of the Great Boonton Tract. It was originally surveyed by John Chapman in May 1715. It is likely that the early surveying crew had cut bridle paths over the narrow footways made by earliest inhabitants of the nearby plantation, and current trails may follow those made more than 300 years ago by Native Americans.
The land was purchased by David Ogden, Colonial Attorney-General of New Jersey in 1759. McCaffrey Lane, the main entrance to the park, was designed in 1767 by Samuel Ogden. It was used to haul iron ore from Hibernia’s mines to Samuel Ogden’s iron works in Old Boonton. Within this historic region, cannonballs were manufactured for use by the Continental Army during the American Revolution.
During his lifetime, Clarence Addington DeCamp (1859-1948) inherited and acquired much of the land now known as Tourne County Park. Using hand tools and levers, DeCamp built two roads to the top of the Tourne and encouraged people to enjoy the forests and fields. He became one of the first conservationists in Morris County.
One of the many interesting features of the landscape is the Mouse Cradle Balancing Rock. It is a glacial erratic, which rests on the southwestern summit of the Tourne and is balanced on two points of a ledge rock and a hidden wedge stone. This imposing 54-ton boulder was named by DeCamp in 1897, when he discovered a mouse nest in a cleft of the rock. He adjusted the boulder with jack screws so the rock could be tilted a few inches with a lever when a hidden wedge was removed.
Tourne County Park is open daily Sunrise to Sunset throughout the year.
The Morris County Park Commission has recently announced a No Smoking Policy banning all smoking including burning of, inhaling from, exhaling the smoke from or the possession of a lighted cigar, cigarette, pipe or any other matter of substance which contains tobacco or any other matter that can be smoked, or the inhaling or exhaling of smoke or vapor from an electronic smoking device. CLICK HERE for more details. Thank you for your continued support!
things to Do:
* Requires permit/advanced scheduling |(HC) Handicap Accessible
Click below for driving directions
GPS Address: McCaffrey Lane & Old Boonton Road, Denville NJ 07834
Boonton Entrance: 41 McCaffrey Lane, Boonton, NJ
41 McCaffrey Lane, Boonton, NJ