LAUREL HILL juts out of a swamp, dark and craggy, between the Hackensack River and the Turnpike. The igneous rock outcropping likely came from the same geologic event that created the Palisades to its east. In the low-lying basin of the Meadowlands, it’s the tallest structure that’s not a capped landfill or a radio tower. It’s also been called “Fraternity Rock” because of its reputation as a place that college kids would climb to drink beer and paint graffiti on its face. But it’s probably still better known by its old name: Snake Hill.
This is among my favorite things I’ve ever written.