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Mountain Laurel at Hanging Rock

posted May 23, 2017, 9:15 AM by Justin P   [ updated Jun 3, 2017, 3:10 PM ]
For the weekend, we took Alex for a camping trip at Hanging Rock State ParkWe left after work on Friday, arriving around 6 in the evening.  Alex was a little anxious after the car ride, so after we set up our tent at site 46, we took Alex for a short hike.  We followed the road towards the lake and took the Lakeshore Path towards the bathhouse. The lake was really pretty in the late evening light.

Past the bathhouse, we went left at the first split on the Chestnut Oak Nature Trail.  While we didn't see any other people on the trail, we did spot a few amphibians.  A toad was hopping along just off the trail.

And a little further was a red eft eastern newt.

We started to see a lot of mountain laurel flowering on the trail and even a few rhododendron.

When we got to the next split, we followed Cook's Wall/Wolf Rock Trail up the ridgeline to see even more in bloom as we got higher in elevation. There was also galax flowering - pretty flowers, but a little stinky.

When we got up to the top, we took a short break as it was pretty hot and humid here.  Then we headed down and finished the loop around the lake.

More mountain laurel were blooming and it was a very lovely walk.

We then headed back to camp as the sun was setting and built a nice bonfire before retiring for the evening.