Finding hidden beauty in Northeast Pennsylvania

I grew up in the small town of Susquehanna, Pennsylvania, just south of the New York State border — a scenic area nestled in the Endless Mountains. Visits home often bring trips to New York, Sundays at the family cottage and adventures in the woods.

This month, Sean and I visited my family for the Labor Day weekend, and trekked up to Salt Springs State Park. This was one of those places that, growing up, you knew you wanted to go to — but was just far enough away that you didn’t. While I was in high school, I made one trip there; and tried again another time with my sister’s family (but that’s a story for another day).

Salt Springs is a 405-acre state park north of Montrose, the county seat of Susquehanna County. The park has just over 12 miles of hiking trails, most classified as difficult because of the steep inclines, rocks and somewhat difficult maneuvering required on them.

Some trails were closed for forest restoration, so we opted to skip the trail and take a well-used path up the side of the brook that went straight to one of the waterfalls.

After making the trek down the brook to one of three waterfalls, we backtracked to hike one of the park’s trails:  Hemlock Trail. The trail is labeled difficult, but really only because of the short incline to the top of the hill.

According to DCNR’s website, the trail follows the east rim of the gorge past Penny Rock to where a right spur leads to an observation platform overlooking the falls.

We took the Woodland Trail back to the main park area.

After our adventure, we drove down the road to a fairly new brewery to the area: Endless Brewing. They had quite a few beers on tap, and we ended up going home with a growler of Keen Wit.

As Sean says, “hiking and beer, but never at the same time.”

This little adventure, basically in my parents’ backyard, made for a great start to the Labor Day weekend!

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