Published On: May 24th, 2021

It’s just us: Kenny, Holt & Jessica. Occasionally our two dogs Annie & Emmet join in the fun. Our home base is in the historic district of downtown Carlisle, PA. Our earthy outpost is in the mountains of WV. This way, we’re fortunate enough to experience the best of both worlds and everything in between. We go 50/50 on planned trips and spontaneous adventure and this day was a little bit of both. We’ve explored Smoke Hole Caverns, Seneca Rocks and Dolly Sods Wilderness area several times, but never with our son, who always adds an extra spark of surprises. The day started out warm & sunny but quickly changed to thick fog, rain & thunderstorms. Thus, our planned trip became spontaneous with detours to flyfish the North Fork River. This awesome rock formation created over millions of years loomed in front of us, beckoning to be explored. Someday, we’d love to do just that. But, on this particular moment we fished, explored the rocky shore–beautiful round river rocks, and pondered life through time. Who else has waded these waters and traversed the surrounding cliffs and mountaintops? What would they make of our little family forays for fun, not just survival? Word to the wise when exploring this area: be prepared for anything, do not stand in the river waving a stick or attempt to climb Seneca Rocks or head aimlessly into the great wide yonder of Dolly Sods in storms. Take provisions, map, head lamp, dress in layers and always throw in a rain coat. Then, be open to going with the flow and making new discoveries!

Note: the parking area here is a mess, watch where you walk and be sure you leave it better than you found it, ie apply the logic of Leave No Trace. Check out our Leave No Trace cards from the Center For Outdoor Ethics on the Gear Page as a reminder for friends, family and fellow wanderers.

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