#1

Member
Pittsburgh
(This post was last modified: 06-26-2015, 03:39 AM by JustinHEMI.)
Did a quick overnighter last night. It was nice going midweek because I had the place mostly to myself. I also wanted to try a new hammock that I bought, hoping that it would be more comfortable than sleeping on the ground. The trek was 13.3 miles in total.


Trail head.
[Image: LHgEYwIYz6nCBriiZpyQ9jaOgpyWsRnNW3cY9AJJ...54-h969-no]


Just a shot of one of the countless boulders that litters this area.
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Since the Allegheny Plateau covers the original oil fields of PA, there is still oil and gas development in the area, and in view of the first part of this trail.
[Image: xLEoYJnvkcRUBwLVuypWF0ds906tPszpHXYMOf-i...54-h969-no]


Mountain Laurel, the PA State Flower, in full bloom!
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Then this guy started pumping as I neared and scared me a little.
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The first part of this trail consisted of Mountain Laurel tunnels..., it smelled nice.
[Image: f463sdGgkq19vSN6Ipb34J1WcBGs9pMKincxavpJ...54-h969-no]


The mountain laurel tunnels then gave way to open forest and ferns.
[Image: guukRJ6vd5f55x50VI3dr5sF_xziy3gsKZQHgmSO...54-h969-no]


Mountain Laurel also comes in pink!
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One of the many many pretty little stream crossings.
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That must have been some lightning strike.
[Image: DBrnk7kQLF0Pk2e6djkNxQ3u88sKdSjMVPxvdcW0...54-h969-no]


I just love when trees take root on boulders..., I get 2 for 1 in this photo!
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The trail following a stream.
[Image: NBpblxR4GMrB5sp2WfXhTsecVCBy3XI8GCvlz8S7...54-h969-no]


When/how did that rock get there? Judging by the tree's root, it either lifted it or grew around it. Either way, nature finds a way.
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Which way to we go?
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Just some fun guys.
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Nice lunch spot!
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Remnants of the oil industry. There was a scent of natural gas in this area as well. so there must still be active pipelines through here.
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Almost stepped on this little guy.
[Image: oWOy41G0LaALZrxaiHwKohl44NFabf6Q474Zx8SO...54-h969-no]


The Allegheny Reservoir.
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The Allegheny Reservoir.
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My first hang! Not perfect, but it did the job.
[Image: ysKbgCTpsbvsFMi0Ypan5V980bs_RjrfPF6s1rW-...54-h969-no]


Spiders kicked the bird out.
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Boulder field for the next couple of miles!
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Pottsville Conglomerate formed when this plateau was part of an ocean floor. It was raised during the Alleghanian orogeny 260-325 million years ago. It has since mostly eroded away, of course.
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The boulders are getting bigger, as the trail winds its way through them.
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More boulders.
[Image: OXqSY3Aoi5AHSCNMRI3FYHMxUAyYWEv-sjrnYlZ8...54-h969-no]


The remains of an old giant hemlock.
[Image: KA3qGclJB7eGEWWKYv2oL7SWapYeYF_Is3LcrlRI...46-h969-no]


The rest of his remains.
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Nature.
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What I liked about this trail is that you went from Mountain Laurel tunnels, to hardwood forests, to boulder gardens, and now a stand of Eastern Hemlock. There are some old growth giants in here, but they're mostly 2nd growth. I couldn't find evidence of the hemlock woolly adelgid here, so maybe they're safe, for now.
[Image: Qs1dRxCcTEhYpudyQgajZHr0xgQ2BjALdp5M5j42...54-h969-no]


This tree's life cycle is nearly complete.
[Image: S52FZC9q3koTnOvCm35MamYFQ6ZBeXl3VHBZcmKG...54-h969-no]


Terrible picture of a surviving giant! This tree is a truly gem and exciting to find, as it is a healthy American Chestnut which is extremely rare. Wiki says "The number of large surviving over 60 cm (24 in) in diameter within the tree's former range is probably fewer than 100." This guy has to be pushing that 24" diameter.
[Image: CCnWcvNLhLgUvS4dWfCBfNDISB4Kh66wvXThqIE9...46-h969-no]


Then there's this nightmare.
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Another mountain laurel tunnel ahead.
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Did someone order ferns? Just showing the interesting diversity of this trail.
[Image: 8nMesuaow6yZuwWZrepm8IgDP9vEZRc2kz6XzHyu...54-h969-no]

Enjoy!
Life has a melody.
#2

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
Beautiful. Smile
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#3

Administrator
Philadelphia, PA
cool photos, Justin.
Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito.
[+] 1 user likes this post
#4

Distracted by Sharp Shiny Objects
North East Wisconsin
Awesome photos! I just got into hammock camping. I need to get out farther than my own woodlot with it though.
[+] 1 user likes this post
#5

Merchant
Central Maine
Nice!
Brian. Lover of SE razors. Maker of Krampert's Finest Products.
[+] 1 user likes this post
#6
Nice!!!   Big Grin
[+] 1 user likes this post
#7
I know exactly where you were, I have a camp up in that area. Great trout fishing too!
[+] 1 user likes this post
#8

Member
Virginia
Great photos and I love your captions!
Bob from Virginia
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#9
What's the nightmare after the chestnut tree?
#10

Member
Michigan
Nice pictures! Smile


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