Searching For Spring In Walnutport, Northampton County
I often see the sign for Walnutport on my travels to Philadelphia via the Pennsylvania Turnpike. As you cross the bridge over the Lehigh River just past Lehighton the sign directs you south on Rt. 248 .
I have never been to this quaint little town until this past Tuesday. A friend hiked on a trail along the Lehigh River there on Sunday and told me that the trout lilies were already in bloom. I love these yellow flowers in the Spring. They only bloom for such a short time. So, because of the slowdown from the corona virus, I had some free time on Tuesday afternoon. And I decided to visit this small town located on the western edge of Northampton County along the Lehigh River.
It was sunny, warm and Springlike when I arrived with temperatures in the mid 60’s. The magnolia and forsythia trees were in full bloom. As were many Spring flowers. I parked at the small park in the center of town and followed the Walnutport Canal Spur trail .
This trail is associated with the D & L National Heritage trail located on the other side of the Lehigh River. It parallels the remains of Lehigh Canal along the eastern bank of Lehigh River. It operated from 1829 until the 1930’s. Trout season opened a week early in Pennsylvania and their were many fishermen taking advantage of the warm Spring afternoon.
After about 1 1/2 miles out on the trail I came upon one of the stone locks that allowed the barges bringing coal from the anthracite coal mines to the cities to descend the Lehigh River before the development of the railroads.
I saw the Lehigh Gap in the distance to the north when I decided to turn around. Had I known, I would have continued my hike another 1/4 mile. I learned afterward there is a nice view of the scenic and historic water gap at the end of the trail. Benjamin Franklin led a group of militia through the gap and built a fort in present day Weissport before the Revolutionary War.
I didn’t find any trout lilies on my hike, they were growing on the southern trail but it was a pleasant afternoon to be outside. I enjoyed the hike and found another area of Pennsylvania, closer to home to explore and search for the beauty of nature. I shall return I am sure. Here is a link to a gallery in my blog website with more photographs from my hike in Walnutport. Lehigh Canal hike April 7 2020.