Monday, June 24, 2013

Weekend Trip: Alleghany State Forest

A view of our cabin from the fire pit area
My husband and I spent this weekend just across the PA border at a cabin in Alleghany National Forest. It was a strange and wonderful mix of "luxury" (private outdoor hot tub) and "roughing it" (see below!). The cabin itself was fantastic - outdoor hot tub, elevated deck, fire pit, etc. It was perched on the edge of a downward slope of forest, and you can see we had a large window so that view would be available even in harsher weather (they're open year round).

One thing that wasn't in the travel brochure was that our camp area was home to over a dozen black bears who weren't particularly fussed about being close to people. We had several scares as we would turn around and accidentally start a staring contest with a bear about 20 ft away. They are SILENT until a twig snaps or you turn your head!

The best bear photo I managed to get
On the plus side, I now know that some candidates for my last words in a startling situation include "Oh sh**!" and "That's a bear that's a bear that's a bear that's a BEAR!" At least I will have no trouble identifying the immanent mauler. It's times like those you ask yourself the tough questions, like, does my car insurance cover bear damage? Jokes aside, they were very docile; they just gave us several adrenaline spikes throughout the weekend as they shuffled by us unexpectedly.

We spent most of Saturday hiking through the forest, and it was beautiful! There seemed to be a lot to do in the forest and surrounding area. Route 6, running through the forest, was rated "one of America's most scenic drives" by National Geographic ( I know we will definitely be back to check that out. I think we just found a new summer tradition.

Part of our path through the woods

Our favorite part of the forest - beautiful and surreal

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