Saturday, August 10, 2013

Parker Dam Bike & Hike

Chris and I had a lovely, active day today at Parker Dam State Park, which is in Clearfield County, about an hour northwest of our house. We left our house about 11:45 AM this morning and stopped in Philipsburg for petrol and Sheetz M-T-O for our picnic lunch at the park. We arrived at the park at 1 PM and found a nice picnic table in the shade to enjoy a late lunch.

Scooby is loaded up and ready to go!

Nom-nom-nom...1/2 turkey sub on wheat with lots of veggies and yellow mustard.

Chris enjoys his turkey sub.

The family on the left rolled up in this truck, which they left parked on the side of the road when there were perfectly good parking spaced nearby. WHY are people so lazy?!?

When we were done with our picnic lunch, we put our cooler back into the car, unloaded the bikes, and set out on a ride. We headed out Mud Run Road to Tyler Road where we turned right. Tyler Road seemed like it was one gigantic hill for about two miles. OOF!!! 

At the intersection of Tyler Road and Laurel Run Road.

Taking a well-deserved break after a grueling 3.3 miles on Tyler Road.

Looking down our next road - Laurel Run Road.

Laurel Run Road had another hill that presented quite the challenge, but what goes up must come we benefited from a glorious downhill just prior to our next turn onto Laurel Ridge Road. Laurel Ridge had an initial slight uphill, followed by an epic two miles of downhill. It was fantastic! About 0.5 miles from the intersection with Mud Run Road, we came to the bridge over Laurel Run, where we stopped to check it out.

Right turn onto Laurel Ridge Road.

There's a slight uphill ahead, but beyond that...a glorious downhill!

Laurel Run

Another view of Laurel Run.


Chris went down to check out the water first.

I joined him to check out the water and the new bridge.

Chris dunked his head in the water before we went back to get on our bikes.

We left our bikes on the bridge over Laurel Run while we splashed about to cool off.

Once back in the park, we rode up to check out the cabin area - all but one or two cabins looked occupied. When we got back to the car, we'd ridden 10.72 miles. We loaded the bikes back onto the rack, grabbed our drinks out of the cooler, and headed off on a hike around the park and campground.

The Lou & Helen Adams Civilian Conservation Corps Museum.

Crossing the rocks below the dam.

Chris crossing the rocks.

Crossing the rocks.

Another shot of the dam.

Looking across the lake to the beach.

We walked through the campground to make note of good sites for once we get our trailer up and running (Chris is currently replacing the floor). 

Yikes! We came across this super smashed snake while walking around the campground.

Whoa! An grandfather used to have one of those!

From the campground, we walked down Fairview Road to the Boardwalk Trail.

Heading down to the water from the Boardwalk Trail.

Another shot of the lake.

Chris checks the GPS.

Chris on "the big rock" just off the bridge on Fairview Road.

We walked up to the Park Office; unfortunately, it closed at 4 PM (it was 4:30 when we got there). However, all was not lost. While we were standing on the porch of the Park Office, we were buzzed by and subsequently thoroughly entertained by several hummingbirds as they visited the feeders and chased each other. For the record, it is VERY difficult to photograph hummingbirds...they're SO FAST!

Chris took this one...

...and this one.

I took this one...

...and this one.

Photo bomb!

We walked down to the camp store/snack bar and enjoyed a small ice cream to cap our day at Parker Dam State Park. We hiked/walked 2.25 miles around the park and through the campground.

It's quite possible this is a Smurf village.

Parker Dam State used to be a camping/vacation destination it's practically in our backyard!

Now THAT is a Subaru!!! Can't wait until we add kayaks to the roof!

We got back home around 6:30, unloaded Chris' bike (we left mine on since I'll take it to work with me on Monday for an after-work ride), fed Oscar and the fish, and decided to head back out for dinner at the new Mexican restaurant on North Atherton Street - El Jalisco. El Jalisco is owned by the same folks that brought Rey Azteca to State College three years ago. As it happened, we went to Rey Azteca on its opening weekend, so it was fitting that we wound up at El Jalisco on its opening weekend tonight. The menu is very similar, although we did notice the prices are marked up about 10% from Rey Azteca. I guess it's more expensive to do business in Patton Township than Benner Township! 

Today was a beautiful day to be active outside! Tomorrow is supposed to equally gorgeous, so we're plotting a motorcycle's been far too long!!! Did you get outside today? What did you do? Let me know in the comments below.

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