Mary Jane and Dan’s hike to Ricketts Glen State Park

June 3, 2018

Enclosed are images of Mary Jane’s and my hike in Ricketts Glen State Park today. It was cool about 60 degrees. Cloudy but no rain.

Ricketts Glen State Park is about 50 miles northeast of Lewisburg, PA and has 22 named waterfalls. Be warned that it is a seven mile hike to see all 22 of them! Ricketts Glen State Park is named for R. Bruce Ricketts, a colonel in the American Civil War who owned over 80,000 acres in the area in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but spared the old-growth forests in the glens from clearcutting. Nearly all of the waterfalls are visible from the Falls Trail, which Ricketts had built from 1889 to 1893 and which the state park rebuilt in the 1940s and late 1990s. The Falls Trail has been called “the most magnificent hike in the state” and one of “the top hikes in the East”. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waterfalls_in_Ricketts_Glen_State_Park

We only hiked the Falls Trail 0.3 miles down to the first waterfalls, Mohawk Falls which is 37 feet high.

Though not raining, the first series of stone steps down the trail were wet and muddy. Therefore, we decided to turn around and retrace our steps back to the car after the first falls.

I recommend you visit Ricketts Glen State Park when the trails have had a few days to dry, for example, after a stretch of dry sunny weather. Also, wear hiking boots with a good grip as the stone steps can still be wet from the spray of the falls. Mary Jane recommends taking a change of clothes (shirt and pants) to change into when you get back to your car. Mary Jane can attest to how easy it is to slip and get all muddy.

Dan


Mary Jane starts down the Falls Trail.

A tributary of Kitchen Creek.
Notice how lush and green it is after all of the rain.

A walk bridge over Kitchen Creek. Notice the hand railings!

Mary Jane with Kitchen Creek in background.

A fellow hiker took a picture of the two of us.

Kitchen Creek roaring down the glen.

The top of Mohawk Falls is in center of image.

View of the top of Mohawk Falls. 37 feet high.

It’s hard to get a good shot of Mohawk Falls with so many trees in the way.
Other waterfalls in Ricketts Glen State Park are more photogenic.
Shot with my Canon 80D digital camera with 18-200mm zoom lens at 18 mm.
Camera on my portable Manfrotto MKBFRA4-BH BeFree Compact Travel Aluminum Alloy Tripod
which folds to less than 16 inches and fits in my day pack. Weight only 3 pounds. Also, I used a cable release.
I set the ISO to 1600 and let the camera decide on the other settings – shutter speed 1/125 sec, aperture F7.1.

Same location as previous shot. I didn’t move camera or tripod.
However, I shot on Manual setting with ISO 100 and F22 to set the
slowest shutter speed possible of 1.0 seconds to achieve that smooth silky look.
I took neutral density filters but didn’t need them as it was darkish from heavy cloud cover.

Moved camera and zoomed in on Mohawk Falls.
I set the ISO to 1600 and let the camera decide on the other settings – shutter speed 1/200 sec, aperture F7.1.

Same location as previous shot. I didn’t move camera or tripod.
However, I shot on Manual setting with ISO 100 and F22 to set the
slowest shutter speed possible of 1.0 seconds to achieve that smooth silky look.
Dramatic difference in look! Notice how the foreground rock on right now pops out!

Huge rocks along a stretch of Falls Trail.

Posted by Dan Hyde

Dan is the Chair of the Lewisburg Photography Club.

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