Another Hike On The Scenic And Historic Walnutport Canal Spur Trail

Another Hike On The Scenic And Historic Walnutport Canal Spur Trail

Walnutport birds (31 of 31)
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I decided to hike on the Walnutport Canal Spur Trail in Lehigh County again on Sunday.   It was cloudy and a cold 32 degrees at my home in Luzerne County.  The radar showed  some rain was moving in from the northwest.  So I headed  35 miles southeast to Walnutport hoping to stay ahead of the rain. There were clouds when I arrived at the trailhead along the Lehigh River but  it was a warmer 42 degrees.

I left my Jeep and  walked down  to the Lehigh River.  It’s waters were brown and raging from the recent heavy rains.  I left the river and walked to  the  Walnutport Canal Spur  of the Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Trail. It follows the old Lehigh Canal for about 4 miles in the town of Walnutport.  The trailhead splits the trail in half. One can hike north where you have a great view of the Lehigh Gap. I followed the trail south for about 2 1/4 miles where it ends along the Lehigh River. 

Old homes and tall old trees can be seen across the waters of the canal.  

Soon after I began my walkup on the trail I saw a couple  of downy woodpeckers  on a tree trunk. They were both males

and I don’t think they liked each other. One kept trying  tried to drive the other away. I saw a female on the branches above them and I am sure she was the reason for their rowdy Sunday morning behavior. 

Near the female woodpecker  was  a female house finch also  watching the woodpecker fight. 

I continued my hike and walked past the historic stone lockkeepers house.

There were  many Canada geese and

mallard ducks swimming  on the  canal. They are feed by the local folk and are pretty much domestic. 

I left the canal trail and followed a path that took me down to the Lehigh River. Along  the way I saw some signs of Spring.  The skunk cabbage,

Dame’s Rocket flowers and 

the blackberry canes were all putting forth their first leaves of the season. 

I saw a couple of critters  on the trail too, an eastern gray squirrel  and

this male common merganser on the river. 

The common merganser flew off as I approached.

I walked back up to the canal trail and walked past the remains of the old railroad that ran over the Lehigh Canal.  I had earlier blogs on  hikes at this trail with more historical information and you can find them in the archives on my blog website.

I continued my hike along the trail under the overcast skies, 

and came to one another of the remaining stone locks from the Lehigh Canal. After this lock, the waters of the canal flow into a wetlands. I had seen dozens of mallard and wood ducks on my last hike and I hoped to see, and photograph, them on this hike.

As I walked along the trail between the raging Lehigh River and the wetlands formed by the old canal I was surprised there were no mallards in the wetlands. There were dozens on my last visit. 

And I saw wood ducks, three pairs of them but they saw me first and were flying away before I could aim my camera. I did see some our usual year long resident birds as I walked along the trail.  There was a small flock of black-capped chickadees fluttering in the trees along the river, this one took a good look at me as I walked past, 

some song sparrows hopping along the waters of the wetlands, 

and this tufted titmouse perched on a branch along the trail. 

There were some migratory birds in the woodlands along the trail too including a couple of eastern phoebes. 

Their  unmistakable songs are a most welcome sign of Spring. 

The Walnutport Spur Trail ended where  the Bertsch Creek flowed into  the Lehigh River.  The were some breaks in the clouds as  began my return hike. I saw a few more wood ducks, a kingfisher and a couple of great blue herons but all of these birds were to fast for  me to aim my camera. 

I did see some more black-capped chickadees, tufted titmice and  American robins on my return hike. 

I also saw this bird. I thought is was a song sparrow when I took the photos. However when I got home, and edited the photo I learned it was a  Louisiana waterthrush. This was a “lifer” for me. I learned it was a warbler and they are quite common on fast moving streams in our Commonwealth. 

Near where I saw the waterthrush was a park  located next to an abandoned lockkeepers home. There were large old sycamore trees in the park. I love this patched trees that are found near rivers. 

I found a lot of colorful birds  here in this small park including a small flock of American goldfinches, 

and a few eastern bluebirds

I love watching the pretty, small  bluebirds as the flew among the large sycamore trees. 

I left the park and continued my hike back. On the way I saw few northern cardinals, this one is a female. 

The skies became overcast again as I approached the lockkeepers house . 

Here I saw a brightly colored male house finch, and

 a common grackle.    Here is a link to a gallery with some more photos of the birds I saw on the Walnutport Canal Spur trail. Walnutport birds April 11 2022. 

The clouds became more threatening as I finished my five mile hike. I was disappointed I wasn’t able to photograph the wood ducks but I was pleased  with the photos I was able to capture of the birds I saw on my hike. It was another great day hiking in the woodlands of Penn’s Woods. 

On the ride home I drove into a snow squall as I neared my home in Hazle Township, And, when I got home, I was  even more pleased with my decision to head south and hike on the Walnutport Canal Spur Trail, there was a half inch of snow on my deck. Here is a link to a gallery with some more photos from my five mile hike.  Walnutport hike April 11 2022. 

Blessed be the Lord for the beauty of summer and spring, for the air, the water, the verdure, and the song of birds. Carl Linnaeus 





This is my first post


  1. Diane Marie Beil on April 14, 2022 at 10:18 pm

    Thank you so much! My childhood stomping grounds! Mom, alone, raised five of us on the ‘island’.. you captured beautiful pictures of my blessed memories. Thank you Eleanor Marie Beil .. you gave us a beautiful childhood.

    • on April 26, 2022 at 4:05 pm


  2. Kathie N Tietze on April 15, 2022 at 8:10 pm

    I love your photos and commentary, which I shared with the ‘Northern Lehigh in the Know’ Facebook group, along with your post to ‘Pennsylvania Destinations’, also on Facebook.
    The group is enthralled with the photos!

    Interesting to note: The borough is served by the Northern Lehigh School District, which is primarily in Lehigh County, with a small portion in Northampton County, Pennsylvania.

    Which leads me to just one correction, because others questioned the county location. The correct county for Walnutport is Northampton. Walnutport is part of the Lehigh Valley, but is not in Lehigh County. The canal, along with the Lehigh River, constitute the dividing line beween the borough of Walnutport, Northampton County, and Slatington, also a borough, which is in Lehigh County.

    There are two websites with further information.

    Thank you again for sharing your beautiful work!

    • on April 26, 2022 at 4:05 pm

      Oh boy first thanks for the kind comments and also for correcting me I didn’t know I will change my blog. it is a beautiful town And thanks for sharing and the links to the websites.