The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Our Saturday Drive

What a lovely week it was! I’m happy that we had the opportunity to enjoy the lovely weather this past Saturday. We drove to Benezette, PA, which is located an approximate 1 1/2-hour drive from our house. The purpose of a trip to Benezette was to visit the recently opened Elk Country Visitor Center.

We made two stops prior to arriving at the visitor center.

The Cross

Our first stop was along Mt. Zion Road, near Benezette, where we walked through a small wooden gate and walked across the field to this cross. There is a sweeping view of the countryside from the cross.

Mt. Zion Road becomes Gray Hill Road, as you continue into Benezette. Shortly after turning left onto Route 555, we saw three bull elk at a campground.

The first two bull elk that we saw.

The third bull elk that we saw.

After admiring these three elk, we continued to the Elk Country Visitor Center.  We arrived at the visitor center shortly before its 9:00 AM opening time.

Elk Country Visitor Center

Elk Country Visitor Center

Elk Country Visitor Center

While at the visitor center, we watched a 4D theater presentation about the elk herd in Benezette. We experienced our first snowflakes while watching the multimedia presentation! We walked all three trails, which led to overlooks where elk may be seen. All three trails were short and easy to walk. We didn’t see any elk at the visitor center. We spent a couple hours at the visitor center. If we could have found more to do in the area, we would have stayed around until dusk. As it turned out we didn’t find anything to do in Benezette, so we started our drive back home. We made a few stops on our way back home.

We ate a late breakfast at the Hilltop Diner, located about 5 miles outside of St. Marys. Breakfast was a leisure affair; it was close to noon when we left Hilltop Diner.

We stopped at Straub Brewery in St. Marys, where Bob enjoyed a complimentary 5-6 oz. drink from the Eternal Tap.

Our Saturday Drive
Bob took this picture of the Eternal Tap.

We stopped at Clear Creek State Park, at Beartown Rocks. The main attraction at Beartown Rocks is the collection of enormous rocks and rock/tree formations.

Bob at Beartown Rocks

These house-sized rocks had a wooden staircase. We walked up that staircase to the top of the stack of rocks.

We could see a far distance from atop those rocks!

Several rocks created a tunnel-like formation

We returned home around 4:00 PM.

6 Responses to “Our Saturday Drive”

  1. George

    I'm glad you had a good day for your ride on Saturday. You got a couple of wonderful pictures of the bull elks. We enjoyed seeing the elk in North Carolina a few weeks ago. I liked those rock formations that you visited.

  2. Betsy from Tennessee

    Hi LInda, It was GREAT seeing more of your travel pictures… I had no idea there were ELK in PA also… Were they introduced into that area –like they were in the Smokies (at Cataloochie)??? NEAT pictures.I loved that rock area also… That is our type of place –to visit. Think I'll put Beartown Rocks on my LONG list of places I want to visit…How's the job going?Hugs,Betsy

  3. Linda (PA_shutterbug)

    @Betsy – According to the Elk Country Visitor Center website “Elk once lived throughout Pennsylvania, but by the mid 1800s, their range had been greatly reduced, with the last elk killed in 1867. Between 1913 and 1926, the Pennsylvania Game Commission attempted to restore an elk herd by releasing 177 western elk. This herd grew slowly, but a 2000 count recorded close to 600 animals which called parts of the Pennsylvania Wilds home.”

  4. Elena

    Wow, that looked like a fun day and the weather looked so nice. Elk are amazing animals and they are so huge!

  5. Willard

    It looks like you had a great trip and I enjoyed the photographs very much.The third bull at the campground looks like one of those that was in the saddle area on the days leading up to the hunt.I am glad you enjoyed the threater presentation. At the time I saw it, they had no credits listed and I don't know if that has changed or not, but they used a great deal of my video in that presentation-especially of wildlife other than elk as the person they had shooting footage for that concentrated on the elk. I have all or most of the video of whitetail deer, eagles, etc. Also the bull fight is between Fred and The Test Hill bull, which I took in 2001. Sorry for going on about this, but I wanted you to know.


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