Bermuda Triangle In NJ?  

MissAnnThrope 56F
11679 posts
3/9/2006 8:32 am

Last Read:
11/17/2007 7:29 pm

Bermuda Triangle In NJ?

I was watching the NYC news this morning, about to turn off the TV to give sleeping another try, when I heard they were about to do a story about a New Jersey version of the Bermuda Triangle. "Cool! I wonder where it is?" I thought to myself as I paid more attention to the news. I was quite amazed to hear, it had to do with a reservoir out where I lived most of my life.

There are two reservoirs in Hunterdon County. Spruce Run, which is actually in Clinton, provides drinking water for parts of Hudson and Essex Counties. My water now probably comes from there. Then there is the back-up reservoir, Round Valley, which is mostly in Lebanon, Clinton Township and is bordered by at least three towns. That's mostly a recreational area and covers 2,300 acres. It has camp grounds, a swimming area, an island, fishing, bears and legends about Satanists and other things. If Spruce Run gets too low, that is the back up. A few years ago they almost had to use it and there were concerns about giardiasis in the water. Heh. People eat what they catch out of that reservoir and I've gone swimming off the island, never in the swimming area. Yes, I could have been arrested, ticketed, banned for life, but the swimming area is shallow and always overcrowded. The lifeguards were assholes who thought everyone was a city person who couldn't swim, but just wade. I wanted to swim, not wade I sort of liked the idea of swimming with the fresh water fishes in the actual sense of the word swimming. The people in the boats in the island area were always very friendly too.

Well, thanks to the news today, I discovered just how dangerous swimming off the island could be, if I became exhausted or went too far from shore. After the water got about chest deep, there's a huge drop off. My bigger concern was always stepping on a lost fishing hook. But the water was always so crystal clear, I looked down and made sure I wasn't stepping on anything but rocks.

Well, I was always under the impression that drop was maybe 40 or 50 feet. Legend has it if you're out in a boat on either Spruce Run or Round Valley, you can look down in areas and see the houses they didn't demolish, but left up when they flooded the area. So it can't be that deep, right? Wrong. It would seem that drop off is 180 feet. Can I hear an "eek," please?

Well, they are calling Round Valley the Bermuda Triangle of NJ. Since 1971, at least 25 people have drowned there. Well, six of the known drowning victims, who drowned between 1973 and 1993 have never been found. So, they've been searching again.

I know, they ended up fish food. Fish are carnivorous. However, experts are saying, the water is so cold at depths that bodies are preserved at that temperature, they don't decompose and therefore, they don't float to the top. OK, so not only was I swimming illegally in some VERY deep water, but I was swimming among dead bodies. While the morbid side of me says, cool, the rational side of me wants another shower, even though I haven't been there in at least five years. Yes, I had already known people had drowned in there and some had never been found. But learning their bodies might be partially intact, if they sunk to a depth where fish don't swim kind of skeeves me out. Swimming among abandoned houses and skeletons doesn't bother me. But partially eaten bodies does. Go figure.

Trying to find the bodies isn't something new. In 1977, they brought in a submarine and someone who worked for Jacques Cousteau to try to find the lost. No one was ever recovered. So now, they're using dogs along the shoreline and hoping with the water level down at this time of year and after a mostly mild winter, that something would turn up.

Now, I don't feel especially bad for the victims. When you see storm clouds or feel a strong wind picking up, you should know to get out of the water. You should also have the common sense to wear a fucking life jacket if you don't know how to swim, or even if you do. Add beer to the equation and there's even more reason to wear your life jacket. This reservoir covers two miles. It can be a long damned swim if you capsize in the middle. In the oldest of the cases, they found the boat, a broken oar, a broken fishing reel and two life jackets. Why the hell weren't these idiots wearing their life jackets?

I feel sorry for the families of the missing. Some of whom were there yesterday, as the search went on. Hoping against hope that some sign of their family member will turn up.

Now, I mentioned the legends about Satanists and I know [blog Dysgyzed] will be disappointed if I don't share a story. So, here is one that makes the missing bodies feel all the more creepier.

One night, around midnight or so, my family's phone rang. My mother was pissed that any of my sister's friends would call that late. However, before my mother could launch into a lecture, the girl asked to talk to me. That and the fact she was hysterical threw my mother. So, I got on the phone with her.

Seems she and her boyfriend had decided to have a late night picnic dinner on the island at Round Valley, in a grove they found. A perfectly circular grove. Yes, they wanted their privacy for more than a picnic and hey, they were teenagers who lived at home. They suddenly felt ill at ease. She looked up and freaked out. She said, there was the ugliest man she had ever seen in her life, in the full black robe with a hood, staring at them. They threw everything into the basket, grabbed the blanket and started running for the causeway to the parking lot.

She said every so often, she looked over her shoulder. They were running as fast as they could and the robed guy was keeping up with them. Mind you, she said he wasn't running, he actually looked like he was floating along. She never saw his feet move, but he managed to keep the pace. They got to the parking lot, threw the basket and blanket in the back seat and there, at the edge of the causeway was the man in the robe, staring and smiling at them. Mind you, this girl was as level headed as they come. She didn't believe in the paranormal at all. She thought I was weird as fuck for having interest in it. If something isn't something you can feel, touch, see, it doesn't exist. She wasn't even sure about God.

I listened to her story, listened to her panic and paranoia. I then told her, "you know the stories about the satanists. Why the hell were you there at the full moon?" Then I tried to calm her down. I made her promise she wouldn't go back at the full moon or at any sabbat on the wheel of the year.

Now, a few of you are saying she and her boyfriend had to be on drugs and were having a shared hallucination. Nope. I don't believe it. Not on this girl. She got on our asses about smoking pot. She was straight laced. She was also so damaged by this, she ended up in therapy and stopped speaking to all of us. Why? My sister and her friends continued to have parties on the island, but never during a weekend near the full moon after that.

Which leads me to another story. About a month later, my sister and some of her other friends had a few hits of acid and they wanted to hang out on the island while tripping. But it was the full moon, so they didn't go there. But they told all their parents that's where they were going. At 7 AM, the mother of one of them was on our doorstep, had we heard from her daughter, did I know where they went, what they were doing, they said they were going to the reservoir. Heh. Needless to say on the heels of the events of the month before, EVERYONE'S mother's panicked.

Well, I got dragged off with his woman to check the reservoir, to see if the cars were there. Nope. The rangers told us, they were well aware kids partied on the island after dark and even though the park was supposed to be closed at that hour, they let them anyway. And they kept tabs and counted every person who went on and made sure the count matched who left. Good to know. But I felt like I was going to end up dead, instead of my sister and her friends, from having to be in a car with this woman. OMG, she was a scary driver.

But she uttered the words that she never got to live down. "Can't you drag the reservoir?" By 10 AM, my sister and all her friends had appeared. They went to the shore to watch the sun rise. But that poor woman. Every time she misplaced something after that, to her dying day, if she asked her daughter, the answer she got was, "I don't know, mom. Why don't you go drag the reservoir?" Seems that's a lot easier said than done.

p33c3y0 42M

3/9/2006 9:05 am

i thought it was commonly accepted that people disappeared in new jersey.

rm_1hotwahine 63F
21091 posts
3/9/2006 11:20 am

So if the bodies were recovered, everything would be ok, right?

"Drag the reservoir" seems to be taking on "jumping the shark" proportions. Cool.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

rm_VoodooGuru1 49M
2053 posts
3/9/2006 11:20 am

You're such a skeptic - except when it comes to things you believe.

I also like open-water swimming, but 10 ft, 50 ft, or 180 ft, it doesn't matter. You still drown just as good if you can't swim.

Why didn't they send down divers to recover the bodies? 180 ft is not too deep.

What kind of fish are in this lake? It is true that water below 100 ft is typically <40 deg. F, but only if there is no sunlight at that depth. And trout, salmon, pike, eels, and many others will hang out at 200 ft or more.

If the sheriffs watched kids go on the island, why didn't they watch the Satanists go in and arrest or hassle them?

Dude in the robe? He was no Satanist. He was the Jesrsey Devil!

MissAnnThrope 56F
11488 posts
3/9/2006 7:23 pm

p33c3y0, people disappear everywhere. What is your point? Or have you been watching too much of "The Sopranos"?

wahine, they found what they feel might be DNA evidence of the missing, with the dry winter and the water receding. The remains have been sent to a state lab for testing. I'm interested in knowning how much is going to turn out to be other missing persons.

Voodoo, I really didn't want to believe her story. But as I said, knowing what this girl was like and how shaken she was, I know someone chased her. As far as the park rangers keeping tabs, the island itself is huge. People get lost on there. If someone isn't off in 24 hours, they go looking. However, one of my sister's friends from college who worked as a lifeguard there summers, told her that yes, they were aware of the satanists meeting there and yes, they found bodies of runaways and the like and supposedly paid off families to keep it quiet. That I never did believe. Why leave the body when you have what even the Washington Post is calling the "NJ 'Bermuda Triangle'"? Just dump it in the water, never to be seen again.

I don't know if they sent divers. My memory doesn't go back that far. Back when these people disappeared, the area was a lot less populated. Therefore, a lot less tax revenue. However, they did send a submarine down in 1977, looking for bodies and found nothing. Also, I was well aware of the drowning risk. I just didn't know how deep. Good thing I never tried to touch bottom, as tempted as I was. Even if I could hold my breath for that long, I would have come up with a massive case of the bends.

MissAnnThrope 56F
11488 posts
3/10/2006 3:38 am

Dysgyzed, I can tell you some stories about the entire area. Then again, everywhere has its weirdness. The guys at Weird NJ have gone national, thanks to that fact.

Whatever it was that chased her, the idea was to scare them off and clear the grove. She never quite got that concept and the last I heard of her, a few years later, she was still in therapy.

Now, when I was 11, I was having the parish priest tell me to pray for Satan to leave me, so I would stop having dreams that ended up happening two weeks later. Because don't you know, all of that is the work of Satan, unless you're a priest. heh. But if I had burned candles in my room at 11, my mother would have killed me. Even when I got older and couldn't deny the calling anymore, I had to keep things well hidden.

But yeah, everyone I know who has even thought about dabbling with demonology has gotten that cold feeling. Except for one and I have a few stories about him. Now, the light ones, I'm not sure what you mean by that. Angels? The right Gods and Goddesses? Is there even a difference? And there is no need to apologize. As you know, I'm a very long winded bitch, known to leave long comments on other blogs. I know you're not a fluffbunny. If you were, you would have left a comment asking what's wrong with smudging with sage in another post, instead of agreeing with what I said about dragon's blood.

We really do have to talk and trade stories.

MissAnnThrope 56F
11488 posts
3/11/2006 3:49 am

Dysgyzed, angelica is also called archangel root. The root itself isn't all that expensive, depending on where you get it. Indio Products has it for $13.50 a pound, if you want to go wild, making both tinctures and oils. The fact it is antiseptic doesn't surprise me as to its uses during the plague. Part of the problem with the plague was poor sanitation and cleanliness. However, in this day and age, if I did get the plague, which still does go around, I'll just take the tetracycline course. I'm funny that way.

Hey, did you know Mrs. M. Grieve's "A Modern Herbal" is online in its entirety?

MissAnnThrope 56F
11488 posts
3/15/2006 1:55 am

mizzkitka, is that eek to the bodies that have never been found, or to the satanists?

Dysgyzed, I know TB is on the rise. The first time I took the local bus route with bronchitis and people moved away from me as I coughed, I had no idea what that was about. Until I did the research. heh.

Now, maybe Indio was updating their page. They have a massive catalogue, they're the ones who make the candles and supplies you see in most botanicas. *sigh* I miss the days when you could get an entire dragon's blood reed for $5.

rm_VoodooGuru1 49M
2053 posts
3/15/2006 6:43 am

Oh hey, I been away and just came back now. I want to let you know that as long as the breath you take is on the surface of the water, there's no danger of getting the bends, regardless of how deep you go. It's only when the breath is taken under pressure that it can happen, and then it can happen in as little as three meters.

Of course, being a smoker, I know that unless I'm wearing a weight belt, I can't dive deeper than six meters before I have to take a breath.

MissAnnThrope 56F
11488 posts
3/17/2006 1:48 pm

Voodoo, hope you had a good time. Thanks, I never knew that about the bends. I have the same problem as far as holding my breath. The last time I tried without practicing, I made it to 45 seconds. That's so not good. Then again, it's been years since I've lived with easy access to a pool. When I did, every year by the end of summer, I could hold my breath for over three minutes. But that still wouldn't be enough time to go down 180 feet and back again. Not to mention with my luck, as I pushed off the bottom to come back up, I'd probably step on a rusty fish hook. I also forgot to mention, Round Valley is mostly bass fishing.

Dysgyzed, cool! Notice how you see all the same brands in shops, with an amazing mark up?

24 posts
6/12/2006 3:05 am

NJ Triangle?

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