The Bear Meadows Natural Area is located within Rothrock State Forest near State College, Pennsylvania. The area is unique in that it is a bog and wetlands located high up on a mountain. The loop trail is an amazing hike that takes you through a canopy of mountain laurel up to 15 to 20 feet tall. Come prepared with waterproof hiking boots since the trail is often wet and muddy.
Today’s hike took me along part of the Mid State Trail in Center County near State College. Access to this trail can be found in several areas. I chose to access the trail from Laurel Run Road behind the Tussey Mountain ski area. This section of trail is extremely rocky so a good pair of hiking boots is necessary. The trail offers a rocky hike across the top of the mountain with views along both sides.
I had the opportunity to kayak the west end of the Shermans Creek in Perry County, Pennsylvania today with some friends. To many, this creek is no big deal. But it holds a special place in my heart because I grew up just a few hundred yards from the Shermans Creek.
There wasn’t much to do in the small town of Center. Yet it seems I was always busy running around outside and exploring the world. Because that’s all I had. During the Summer I would be swimming in the Shermans Creek. The Winter meant ice skating on the creek. During the Spring and Fall I would meander through the woods looking at the creek and fantasize about having a boat and the ability to float along with the current.
What seems to be a lifetime later, I now own a kayak and found friends who share the same desire to explore the creeks and streams of Pennsylvania. Today, as I paddled down the stream, I looked around at the cliffs and woods that surround the Shermans Creek, and I pictured myself as a young boy roaming along the banks looking out at me as I float by.
The Shermans Creek water level was right around 2.5′ on the Shermans Dale water gauge today. The trip took us approximately 4 hours from the Enslow covered bridge to the Adair covered bridge with a lunch break and 3 portages (2 portages around fallen trees and 1 around a low concrete bridge). There are about 4 play areas for surfing along this section. Though there was some scraping the bottom, the level was decent for this trip.