Seven Hills/HTS/Reeves Brook Trail Loop to Ramapo Torne and Torne View

Overview

This loop hike at the southern end of Harriman State Park leads to an expansive viewpoint from the summit of the Ramapo Torne.

Details
Time:
3 hours
Difficulty:
Moderate
Length:
5.2 miles
Route Type:
Circuit
Dogs:
Allowed on leash
Features:
Views, Public Transportation
Location
Park:
Region:
County:
Rockland
State:
NY
Publication
First Published:
07/18/2002

Updated/Verified:
02/27/2014
Submitter:
Daniel Chazin

Photo

View from Ramapo Torne. Photo by Daniel Chazin.

Parking


View Reeves Meadow Visitor Center in a larger map

Trail Conference volunteers maintain trails in this park.
Trailhead GPS Coordinates
41.173916,-74.168658
Driving Directions

Take N.J. Route 17 north to the New York State Thruway and take the first exit., Exit 15A (Sloatsburg). Turn left at the bottom of the ramp onto N.Y. Route 17 north, and continue through the Village of Sloatsburg. Just past the village, turn right at the traffic light, following the sign for Harriman State Park. Cross an overpass over railroad tracks and continue along the Seven Lakes Drive, passing under the Thruway overpass, and soon entering Harriman State Park. Proceed for another mile to the Reeves Meadow Visitor Center, on the right side of the road. Park in the Visitor Center's parking lot.

Train

Take the NJ Transit/Metro-North Port Jervis Line to the Sloatsburg station. From the station, cross the railroad tracks and head north on Ballard Avenue. When Ballard Avenue ends, turn right onto Academy Avenue and continue to Seven Lakes Drive. Turn right on Seven Lakes Drive, continue under the New York State Thruway, and pass Greenway Road and Laurel Road on the right. A short distance beyond, about 0.9 mile from the train station, you'll reach a bridge over the Stony Brook. On the bridge, you will notice a triple red-square-on-white blaze and a directional arrow, which mark the trailhead of the Pine Meadow Trail. Turn right, leaving the road, and follow this red-on-white-blazed trail for another 0.8 mile to the Reeves Meadow Visitor Center.

Description

On the southwest side of the parking lot (right when facing the woods), you will find the red-on-white blazes of the Pine Meadow Trail. Follow the Pine Meadow Trail as it heads southwest, parallel to Seven Lakes Drive. Soon, the trail bears left and heads uphill on a rocky path. After a short level stretch, you'll reach a junction where the Pine Meadow Trail turns right. You should turn left, leaving the Pine Meadow Trail, and follow the blue-on-white-blazed Seven Hills Trail, which begins here.

The Seven Hills Trail climbs steadily along a woods road. After crossing a stream, the trail briefly turns left onto another woods road, then turns right, leaving the road, and continues to ascend. Soon, the trail levels off, the footpath narrows, and you follow undulating terrain, with some short ups and downs. You'll also pass an interesting wetland to the right of the trail.

About a mile and a half from the start, you'll reach a T-intersection with a woods road. The orange-blazed Hillburn-Torne-Sebago (HTS) Trail begins to the right, but you should turn left to continue along the blue-on-white-blazed Seven Hills Trail, which begins a rather steep ascent. The grade soon moderates, then again steepens.

At the top of the ridge, the Seven Hills Trail reaches a junction with the orange-blazed HTS Trail. Turn right and follow the HTS Trail as it runs along the ridge of the Ramapo Torne, reaching its summit in about a third of a mile. Here, there is an expansive view to the south over Torne Valley and Hillburn, with the New York State Thruway visible below.

After spending some time enjoying the view, retrace your steps to the junction with the Seven Hills Trail. Now continue ahead, following the joint HTS/Seven Hills Trail along the ridge, blazed with both orange and blue-on-white blazes.

In 0.2 mile, at a high point on the ridge, the two trails split.  Bear left and follow the blue-on-white b7Torne View. Photo by Daniel Chazin.lazes of 7the Seven Hills Trail, which descends steeply into a gully, then climbs back up to reach a western-facing viewpoint, known as Torne View. From here, the Ramapo Torne, which you just climbed, is visible to the left. The view from this vantage point is far more pristine than that from the Ramapo Torne!

Just beyond Torne View, you will reach a junction with the black-on-white-blazed Raccoon Brook Hills Trail, which begins to the right. Continue ahead, following the blue-on-white blazes of the Seven Hills Trail, which soon begins to descend.

After a short climb over a rise, the Seven Hills Trail descends to reach a junction with the white-blazed Reeves Brook Trail. Turn left, leaving the Seven Hills Trail, and follow the Reeves Brook Trail, which descends steadily on a winding footpath, steeply in places. In a little less than a mile, after passing a cascade in the brook, the Reeves Brook Trail bears right and joins a woods road, continuing to descend along Reeves Brook. When the Reeves Brook Trail ends at a junction with the red-on-white-blazed Pine Meadow Trail, turn left onto the Pine Meadow Trail and follow it a short distance back to the Reeves Meadow Visitor Center parking lot, where the hike began.

Comment: Please be relevant, civil, non-commercial.

Don't be disappointed by the views

The views up Ramapo Torne are very cool--think about all the people who are on the Interstate looking up and thinking it's impossible to get up that mountain. Well, you are there! So, no, it's not gorgeous and untouched by man, but it has its own merits. We did give the try of going up the Torne from the back so that we didn't have to backtrack. It was tough but fun. The split for the Seven Hills Trail is spray-painted onto a rock where it turns. Shortly after the split, you can look back on the ridge and see this: 

Ramapo Torne

This makes a nice winter hike. Nice views from the Torne and beyond. Trails were well blazed and easy to follow, even with the snow covering some of the blazes. One icy steep spot where microspikes were critical. The last time we tried this hike, we encountered a brush fire, and had to turn around.   Some photos: http://agiletrekker.blogspot.com/2014/03/seven-hillshtsreeves-brook-trai...

Beautiful hike

My husband, dog, and I walked this loop on Labor Day 2010. Trail junctions were well-marked. It was a beautiful outlook up on the Ramapo Torne, with Manhattan skyline in the distance, the sound of gunshot echoing from across the valley somewhere, and the electrical station humming below you. I think the 7HT is one of my favorite hikes in Harriman, looping up the rocks to the Torne View was rewarding yet possible with our dog. Many of the trails in Harriman move alongside beautiful rock outcroppings, but this one took us right up and over. We only had to portage the pooch in a couple of spots up/down boulders. If your trail maps are old, like ours are (published 2003) be sure to take the 2nd junction of the HTS off the 7HT. We were a little confused when comparing the written description with what we saw on our trail map, which does not have 2 junctions with HTS. Thus, we took the 1st junction we came to thinking it was the only one we would encounter. Actually it was a nice walk, coming up the back side of the Ramapo Torne. Unfortunately the final ascent of this was too difficult for us to manage with our dog. We backtracked to 7HT and made our way to the 2nd junction as described above for the view. Thus, what is written above is correct: The orange-blazed HTS now includes what are marked as non-official trails on the 2003 map (ie. the black-dashed woods road and red-dashed trail are now orange-blazed HTS in real life). I can tell you that the 1st junction had 3 orange blazes, the 2nd junction had 2. We were told at the bookstore that new maps are forthcoming in 2010 sometime.

New Harriman-Bear Mountains Maps Available Now!

Thanks for your hike report.  It's good to hear you enjoyed this great hike.

There have certainly been several changes on the maps since the 2003 9th edition (we're now up to the 13th edition!).  The new 2010 maps are now available on our online store (click here) and will soon be available at our retail partner stores.  I would certainly suggest getting a copy!

Tough to find the Reeves Brook junction

We are experienced hikers. We hiked most of this on Sunday, June 28 with these directions and the Harriman State Park trail map #3. While on Seven Hills, we could not find the Reeves Brook junction, and we met another couple who also could not find the junction. We ended up going much farther on the Seven Hills Trail than we had planned. We eventually hit the Hillburn Towne Sebago Trail, but even that junction was poorly marked when heading North on Seven Hills (it was better marked in the opposite direction). We took HST to PIne Meadow Trail, and then followed that back to the parking lot. To our surprise, we re-met the couple who had been looking for the Reeves Brook trail. They went off-trail and followed the pipeline, which forms a hypotenuse to the HTS and Pine Meadow. They spoke with someone in the Visitor Center who said they were the second set of hikers to complain about the Reeves Brook Trail that day. I would be happy to re-visit this hike when you confirm the markings for these two key junctions have been improved.

Finding Reeves Brook Junction

If you're so discouraged by the "poorly marked" trail by Reeves Brook Junction, rely less on the blazes and more on common sense, your surroundings, and the features and contour lines of your map. Also, you can also come out and volunteer to improve the blazes with the Trail Conference, rather than waiting for someone to "confirm the markings...have been improved."