Ghosts Of Summer In November At Locust Lake State Park

Ghosts Of Summer In November At Locust Lake State Park

Locust Lake (6 of 33)
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Last month I drove to Locust Lake State Park in Schuylkill in the hopes of spotting the bald eagle that I saw this last summer. I had heard it was still occasionally seen at the park. It was sunny at my house in Hazle Township but clouds had started to move in when I arrived at the lake.

In the summer the trails and roads in Locust Lake State Park are bustling with campers, hikers and swimmers.  It was much different on this cold November morning. The park was desolate when I arrived. 

The bare trees and fallen leaves added to the feeling of desolation as I walked the trails around the lake. 

I didn’t see the bald eagle but I did encounter quite a few of the birds that inhabit our woodlands in the Winter. I encountered a number of white-breasted nuthatches and 

dark-eyed junco along the trails. 

As I walked along the roads of the campgrounds I discovered their were far more campsites then I thought there were when I visited in the summer. This explained the many people I  would encounter when I visited during the peak camping season. 

I thought of the chatter and laughter of the many campers, young and old, that echoed through the woodlands in the summer. I thought of the smell of smoke from the campfires and cooking food. So many wonderful memories were created here and lingered on this cold, dreary November morning. 

I left the campground and walked some of the trails along the hills that surround the lake. A  small creek flowed from the mountains.

Ice was starting to form on the waters of the creek, a sign of the colder weather to come. 

In the deeper woods I saw a few more birds including what I believe was an oven bird or brown thrasher scraping the fallen leaves on the ground. 

A brown creeper was searching the trunk of a tree nearby. 

And a  tufted titmouse also scampered on the ground.

I returned to the campgrounds and followed the trail past the deserted beach. Again I though of the sounds and sights of summer, splashing, laughing and colorful blankets and beach  umbrellas. 

As I walked along the lake to return to my car I saw a few common merganser on the lake 

and a beautiful pileated woodpecker rapping at a tree trunk along the lake.

Despite the cold and clouds it was a nice walk. And although I always enjoy a walk in the woodlands of Northeastern Pennsylvania, I still would rather walk here when the park is  crowded with campers on a warm summer day. Here is a link to a gallery with some more photographs from my hike. Locust Lake hike November 17 2019

“But there is always a November space after the leaves have fallen when she felt it was almost indecent to intrude on the woods…for their glory terrestrial had departed and their glory celestial of spirit and purity and whiteness had not yet come upon them.”
― L.M. Montgomery,


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