“Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft, and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another paradox: what is soft is strong.” -Lao Tzu
Today we decided to hike the Drakes Creek Trail near Jim Thorpe. It was a fairly easy 3 mile hike along a well maintained dirt road. The trail descends about 500' from the parking lot to the Lehigh River....meaning the hardest part of the hike was coming back to our car. Although the trees have lost most of their leaves the hike was still full of color, because the rhododendron form a thick, impenetrable wall of greenery along the slopes of the creek. We definitely need to come back to this area in July when they bloom. The road is used by rafting expeditions to enter the Lehigh River, but it looked like a difficult way to get into the river to me.
The creek forms several picturesque, little waterfalls on its way to the Lehigh River, and small bridges span the creek to allow vehicles and hikers to cross the water as it meanders downstream. The creek finally flows under railroad tracks at the end of the trail and enters the river through a tunnel. We picked up sandwiches at a small grocery store on our way to the trailhead and enjoyed a nice picnic close to the railroad bridge.
The first bridge along our hike.
Drake Creek...the rhododendrons make it look like a jungle.
We found lots of interesting things along the way.
The second bridge was by the most impressive falls.
At the end of the hike we had to go down these stairs to get to the creek. This is where we had our picnic here and where the rafting expeditions slide their rafts down into the river.
Looking north along the railroad tracks about Drake Creek.
Looking through the tunnel towards the Lehigh River.
Looking up Drake Creek.
This is where the creek flows into the Lehigh River.
Some of the last leaves falling from the trees.