It’s Sure Not Looking Like Spring In The Lehigh River Gorge
I knew my hiking options would be limited this weekend. We still have around 20 inches of snow on the ground here in Northeastern Pennsylvania, a gift from the late season snow storm named Stella. And it was snowing again this morning! I decided to hike the D & L trail in the Lehigh River Gorge State Park at the entrance near the little town of Rockport.
I chose this trail since it allows snowmobiles. These recreational vehicles compact the deep snow cover. making for easier hiking. I was hoping there was at least one snowmobile enthusiast out on the trail since the storm. I knew it would be hard walking in the snow when I saw these two deer having a hard time getting around in the snow drifts.
I walked past a couple walking their dog and didn’t see another person for the next three miles. There also wasn’t much wildlife out either. I saw a small hawk darting in and out of the threes along the gorge, a few nuthatches, black-capped chickadees and this woodpecker. i wasn’t sure if it was a downy or hairy.
I enjoyed listening to the roar of the river below the trail that followed the old railroad right of way. I walked by the ruins of the old locks that were part of the Lehigh Canal but I didn’t venture off the trail to explore them, as I always do, because of the deep snow.
I walked out about 3 miles, to Mud Run, where it flows into the Lehigh and the exhibits on the Mud Run train disaster that occurred near here in 1880. I did a blog post on the massacre and it can be found in the archives of my blog.
As some of you who read my blog on a regular basis may know, I love trains and I was rewarded for my efforts to get down to the river when I heard an approaching train. I watched the locomotive pass, the engineer honked his horn at me, followed by almost 100 tankers. Here is a video I posted on my YouTube channel. https://youtu.be/-MT8LTMzFeo
Even with the snow being compacted from the snowmobiles it wasn’t easy walking, there being an inch or two of lose snow atop the compacted snow. It was a long and exhausting walk back. I am still sore as I type this.
At least the snow had stopped and the temperatures were not too bad, staying near the freezing mark. Evidence of this would be the leaves of the many rhododendron growing along the trail. In frigid temperatures their leaves curl up but not today.
I passed another couple on snowshoes before I arrived at me car. So this time I was not alone in the gorge, like my last visit, there were seven other people out enjoying the beauty of the Lehigh River. Hopefully, this blog may encourage some other folks to head out in snow, and enjoy, what I am hoping is the last winter storm for at least another year. Here is a link to some more photographs from my hike .https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/photographs-2017/nggallery/photographs-2017/Lehigh-River-Gorge-hike-march-18-2017-
“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world’s great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs. I am haunted by waters.” ― Norman Maclean,