May 31, 2011

Kelly's Run Hike

 We had a great hike over the holiday weekend in the beautiful "southern end" of Lancaster County, starting out at Pinnacle Overlook and looping down to Kelly's Run and back.  The weather was warm and pleasant, the stream and river were running high due to a rainy spring, and we saw many wonderful sights, like this Eastern Fence Lizard:

We felt very lucky to spot this little guy, as they are a "species of special concern" and somewhat rare.  We also captured him on video, check out the push-ups he does to show off his brilliant blue belly: 

video
 The mountain laurel was at the peak of its bloom:
 This bridge over Kelly's Run was closed:
 The framework sits on old stone piers:
 The patina of rust and flaking paint was fabulous:
 It looks even funkier with the camera's panorama setting:
 We hustled over to the tracks by the river when we heard that clickety clack:
 We made the universal arm-pump sign for "please blow the train whistle" and the engineer whistled and waved:
video
We headed up the rocky and rigorous trail that runs in the ravine along the creek.  It's very beautiful, with lots of small waterfalls and rills, and rhododendrons and pawpaws lining the banks. 

 The sound is both relaxing and invigorating:
video

A lush mossy stone wall along the creek:
 A shelf fungus on a decaying log:
 The underside of the fungus:
 Every here and there we found a fallen tulip poplar flower.  These are very tall trees, and the flowers are borne up high, so the ones knocked down by thunderstorms and wind are the best ones to admire:
 Back at the picnic area near the trail head, there was some excitement when a gorgeous black racer snake came slithering through.  I was pleased to observe that everyone stayed mellow and let it pass, and the snake stayed mellow also:
 A snake in the grass video:
video
And finally, a view I never tire of--the mighty Susquehanna River:

1 comment:

Martha C. Hall said...

Great pictures Sue. I like the inclusion of the short videos. I love trains. I think I could happily live near the train tracks!