Heartbeat Road

Heartbeat Rd is the nickname given to Peace Valley Rd in Lincoln Park. The road was given it’s nickname because according to legend you can feel the heartbeat of a local child with an oversized heart. The reality is that there is an old stone pump house which created a noticeable vibration. The stone house is no more, but the actual pumping machinery is still there, and the road itself remains. Just off of Pine Brook Rd, it begins as a paved road, but after about 2/3 of a mile becomes a narrow dirt road. It is not easy on the shocks, and I imagine would be especially creepy at night.


The road runs along the edges of a large wooded swamp, commonly known as the Bottom of Lake Passaic. This is a description written by Brian Sniatkowski, a local geocacher:

When the Wisconsin Glacier began its retreat about 15,000 years ago, it left behind Lake Passaic; a 30 mile long, 10 mile wide and 200 ft. deep body of water (with some decent trout fishing I bet). As the lake drained, what remained was a pretty darn big swam. The remains of Lake Passaic are still evident today in areas such as the Great Swamp, Black Meadow, Great Piece Meadow, Hatfield Swamp, here in Troy Meadow and in the basement of area homes whenever there is a lot of rain. Troy Meadow is a little known wildlife preserve, covering a couple thousand acres, hemmed in and threatened by development on all sides.


11 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Bob on October 4, 2011 at 1:27 PM

    Is not in Lincoln Park, it is located in the Towaco section of Montville Twp.


  2. Posted by Pakrat on March 18, 2009 at 9:10 AM

    Here’s a picture of the rebuilt pumphouse on Peace Valley Road that I took on June 15, 2007.

    http://homepages.rootsweb.com/~lign owsk/LetterBoxing/HPIM1723.JPG


  3. Posted by Joe on March 10, 2009 at 10:11 PM

    Hey i grew up in Lincoln Park and i have gone down heartbeat road numerous times. It is now January 09 and i went down it just a few weeks ago with a friend and the water pump no longer works so there is nothing to be scared of. Seriously there wasnt anything to be scared of even when the water pump was up and running.


    • If the pump house were up and running I would be terrified but I’m 11. If it weren’t running it would still be pretty scary. The trees are lined up in a certain way that makes the road dark even during the day.


  4. Posted by Alyssa on March 10, 2009 at 10:10 PM

    Hi, My name is Alyssa, I’m 21 years old and have lived on Peace Valley Road all my life. It was so funny to read your website and how spooky you think our little street is. Not gonna lie, I definitely have taken my friends down there at night a few times just to freak them out, and have even scared one friend out of driving down there ever again because she swears “her car started driving itself” but I can tell you that I played outside up and down that street all my life, and never have I seen an albino with a knife or ghosts hanging around the well. As for the house that has been written about, it’s actually a house, a small house, but a family lives there just the same, and they’re not there to run the pump or anything. Feel free to keep spreading scary stories, we in the community are at least amused by the popularity of “Heartbeat Lane” -Alyssa


    • Posted by Liam on March 26, 2013 at 2:09 PM

      A friend of mine lives on Peace Valley Road and is convinced that a Union Civil war veteran haunts that house.


  5. Posted by Helmut on March 10, 2009 at 10:10 PM

    I grew up in Parsippany, just a few miles from Heartbeat Rd. As teenagers I can’t even remember how many nights I went there with my friends to scare the S out of each other! Now I live in Oak Ridge – only a few miles from Cozy Lake Rd. (and also only a few miles from Clinton Rd). I’m going to let my girls read your piece on Cozy Lake Rd and take them there after it gets dark. If they enjoy that, maybe we will head to Clinton Rd.


  6. Posted by Pete on March 10, 2009 at 10:09 PM

    Is the pump house still there? Hmmmm! Can’t say one way or another. When I went for the cache I didn’t pay any attention. The heartbeat was actually a water pump. The pump-house is still there. It’s on the south side of the road toward the Lincoln Park end where the pavement turns to dirt. If it’s still running you’ll clearly hear it. But we’re talking early sixties here.


  7. Posted by DC on March 10, 2009 at 10:09 PM

    About the pump house making the heartbeat-like sounds. Well, it is true. You know the townhouse development next to the Lincoln Park entrance of Peace Valley Rd?, well I was reading the newsletter of the development (I have relatives who live there) and it said something about “retrieving golf carts next to the pump house on the golf course” or something. I will try to scan you the article from the newsletter, if I get my hands on it. I see the pump house every time I go past Peace Valley Road on 2 bridges road (The big hill coming down the mountain). Is the pump house still operating? I don’t know, but it is still there.

    I believe there are golf carts placed on the pavement next to the pump house. Perhaps not anymore, since it is winter. I have always wanted to go on Peace Valley Road, since I have passed the entrance of it thousands (literally) of times. Every time, I look into the entrance, looking for anything strange or simply the sight of people. Recently, when I was coming down the big hill (there is a great view onto the Peace Valley Road below it, especially since there are no leaves on the trees blocking the sight during this time), I saw 2 workers, or possibly relatives of the household, talking with a woman by her house. Another time, I saw a Jeep Liberty driving slowly down it. I never saw the other entrance of Peace Valley Road (Montville area) until recently. I tricked my mother into turning left after the end of 2 bridges road, instead of right (we usually go right, I claimed left was faster since I found a new way to get home). When we turned left, I kept on looking left for the Peace Valley Road sign. After some driving, I saw it. It was pitch black outside and we were going 40 mph past it. I only managed to acknowledge that the street drops down immediately after entering. your site rocks. oh yeah, are you thinking about exploring and writing about the Greystone Psycho Hospital off Route 10?


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