As someone who’s lived in suburban and urban environments, I’d never really spent much time in real forests, what with the trees, and the furry woodland creatures, and the sweeping mountain vistas that make your ears pop at high altitudes.
All that changed recently, when I visited Cook Forest in northwestern Pennsylvania. This was my second trip, having previously been there in October. The campground’s entrance sits on the Clarion River, which traverses the 6668-acre forest. In addition to canoeing and kayaking (which were closed until mid-March), there is also hiking, camping, horseback riding, and fishing.
Being up in the forest for four days was extremely peaceful. By the end of my trip, I was entertaining ideas of permanently relocating to some quaint, remote forest location where the nearest town is a 20-mile drive. Besides hiking, I also enjoyed just walking around the campgrounds and taking pictures (and writing in my journal all the while, like the big geek I am).
While I’m not quite ready to pack it all in and become the female Thoreau, I’m seriously considering another trip to Cook Forest at some point (and yes, I will be bringing my pens and journal again).