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.
View of Hawk Falls from the side
I love the colors and reflections of Autumn.
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.