Weatherly To Penrose Reservoir Hike.
It was a frigid March morning here in Northeastern Pennsylvania. 13 degrees. But clear, deep blue skies and abundant sunshine warmed it up and made for near perfect hiking weather.
Decided to hike the railroad tracks up from Weatherly to the Penrose reservoir. A beautiful walk and there usually is some sort of wildlife on the reservoir. I have seen a few bears up on the mountain and bears make for good photographs. A lot of history too.
These railroad tracks have been in use for around 175 years. . This railroad right of way dates back to 1836 when, I believe the Hazleton Railroad (read more by clicking the red highlighted words ) first laid it’s track here. You can still see signs of the drill holes in the rock. A number of long forgotten railroad companies ran there track on this right of way. There is still a bridge over the Hazle Creek known as Hazle Junction. The old Beaver Meadows Railroad and the Buck Mountain Railroad both intersected with the Hazleton Railroad here. Both of these railroads seized to exits over 150 years ago yet you can still walk on the old right of ways. There are still wooden tracks on the Buck Mountain right of way. While hiking out here I often wonder about the laborers who built the tracks, the engineers who drove the engines transporting the tens of thousands of coal cars, and the many passengers who rode the later trains. What where they thinking as they rode through this beautiful mountain scenery? Most immigrants coming to work in the mines in the Hazleton area, including my grandparents, had to take this route to their new homes.
All along the tracks you could here the roaring of the black Creek as it flowed with the swiftly, swollen with water from the melting snow pack.
Another half mile up the railroad tracks, about two miles from Weatherly, I came to the Penrose reservoir. A beautiful place situated along the railroad tracks. And it’s been there a long time. It was acquired by the town of Weatherly in 1884 but appears to be even older. (click the red highlighted Penrose reservoir for a very informative link on the history of Weatherly. Information on the reservoir can be found in the entry for the year 1882) Although I only started hiking up here a few years ago, I have seen a lot of wildlife on this reservoir and the surrounding woods, including deer, rabbits, hawks, osprey, blue herons, ducks geese and even a otter and the rare American bittern. There wasn’t any wildlife today. Probably because the reservoir was still frozen solid. It has been an unusually cold winter in these parts.
Walked a bit more and headed back, I did try to walk the old Buck Mountain railroad bed but I had sneakers on and it was still covered in snow. So hiked back down to Weatherly , another town with a long history, but that will be for another day. Here is the link to some more photos from my hike. I forgot my memory card for my Canon camera so had to take these with my Iphone. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/photographs-5/nggallery/blog-photos/weatherly-to-penrose-reservoir-march-29-2015 Feel free to comment or ask questions about the photos or my hike.
But in every walk with Nature one receives far more than he seeks. ~John Muir, July 1877