Sunday, October 27, 2013

Buttermilk Falls, Delaware Water Gap, New Jersey

We had a brisk Fall weekend, perfect for hiking and viewing Autumn colors at the Delaware Water Gap in New Jersey. The key to staying comfortable was layers! It was so cold I started out with all 4 layers, but after some steep climbs I was down to just 2, and then eventually 3 again!

Buttermilk Falls, easily viewable from the trail head. The trail starts with a steep ascent along the side of these falls.

Forest floor covered in leaves

Blue skies, sunshine, and Fall colors

My idea of serenity, a walk in the woods...

A vista with Autumn colors

A view of Crater Lake

Another perspective

The trail winds around the lake.

Beautiful Autumn colors pop up everywhere.

A path through the forest

Hemlock Pond

Another view of the pond

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Hickory Run State Park Pennsylvania

The National Parks may be closed right now due to the government shutdown, but the State Parks are open! Saturday was a beautiful day to enjoy Autumn colors at their finest at Hickory Run State Park. We had the unusual combination of hot weather and peak foliage that made for a gorgeous Fall hike.

Boulder field

View of Hawk Falls from the side

I love the colors and reflections of Autumn.

Hawk Falls

Waterfall over a dam on the Shades of Death trail. Today a ranger explained to me the origin of the name "Shades of Death". Apparently, the Native Americans called the whole park area Shades of Death because not much would grow here. The conifers dropped so many needles the high tannin content in the soil inhibited other plants from growing. I much preferred my more dramatic but untruthful theories of the name (grizzlies, fugitives with hatchets, that sort of thing). He did tell me that it is the trail that causes the most injuries in the park due to twisted roots and slippery rocks along the creek. We stepped carefully on this trail!

Pretty miniature waterfall.

Rhododendrons lining the creek on the Shades of Death trail.

A view of Autumn splendor in the Lehigh Gorge from Fireline Trail.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Ricketts Glen State Park Pennsylvania, A Waterfall Lover's Paradise

Here is a sampling of the many beautiful waterfalls found at Ricketts Glen State Park, easily one of the loveliest parks in Pennsylvania.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Tohickon Valley Park and Ralph Stover State Park

Early Spring is a wonderful time of year for hiking, the air is pleasantly warm, and signs of new life are everywhere! Today was a beautiful day for a hike in Tohickon Valley Park and Ralph Stover State Park in Bucks County Pennsylvania. The high cliffs make this a popular area for climbers, and the gentle rapids attract kayakers.

The view from up high. Way down below there are a few kayakers in Tohickon Creek.

The trail had many beautiful views of the swiftly flowing creek.

Blue skies, ever so slightly overcast, new signs of Spring everywhere!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Hickory Run State Park Pennsylvania

This weekend the weather was unseasonably warm, in the forties, a perfect opportunity for some winter hiking in Hickory Run State Park.

Rhododendrons line the creek, a perfect contrast of dark green against white snow and flowing water.

I love forests of conifers providing plenty of greenery, even in winter.

The creek is partially frozen in spots.

I love the sound of hiking along water.

Sand Spring Lake was frozen over, but starting to thaw, creating patterns of swirls in the ice.

A popular tourist destination in summer, now quiet  and covered with ice and snow.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

French Creek State Park, Berks County, Pennsylvania

This weekend was a perfect time for a hike in French Creek State Park. This is the last hike before Hurricane Sandy pummels our area and likely takes down the last remnants of Autumn leaves. It was a surprisingly warm day, a bit of misty rain in the morning and some cloud cover, but otherwise very pleasant hiking weather.

Grey clouds over Hopewell Lake in the morning, but the brilliant colors of Autumn are still here.

Much of the trail is under forest cover. I felt surrounded by the gorgeous yellow, orange and crimson colors of the season.

I love the smells of Autumn, and the sound of leaves crunching underfoot.

Vivid yellow everywhere.