Monday, April 21, 2014

Ups and Downs, Breaths In, Breaths Out in Carbon County - A writer in repose

Fall is certainly my favorite time of year to be in.
But Spring is the season that is hoped for.  On the tails of this Winter, it was yearned for.

At long last, in the past fourteen days, Spring finally arrived here.

It has been a productive winter as far as research for CulturedCarbonCounty.  Stories keep cropping up like a multi-headed hydra, as stories presented themselves and try as I might to finish one, three more would crop up in the midst.
My son Nate and his friend Cris Hess, the artist.  Atop Sleeping Bear above the Bear's Den.  Looking toward Flagstaff.
Lehighton is out of frame left, Packerton in view, Jim Thorpe out of frame right.

Extant Nature after a harsh winter - The cotton wood
catkin buds stand at the ready to spring forth across
from Tank Hollow near Stony Creek.

Today I actually said the word "hiatus" to myself, in regard to the works of this blog.  Covering local history here is an insatiable mistress.

Like this relentless winter that had still been lurking over our shoulder as of just days ago, I find writing the stories I do to be both gratifying and exhilarating but the hours it takes in front of a computer screen typing and searching away and rough drafts and checking and double checking sources, can be brutally harsh at times.  (I've actually developed an impinged shoulder from sitting here in this computer-human symbiotic relationship in delivering this blog to Carbon County.)
And here, on April 21 on the inside of the Stony Creek curve off the
Central Jersey rail mainline exists this severe overhang where
perhaps the last snow of Carbon County remains.

There are times when we take in pure mountain air, (like at Hawk Falls, along the water reservoir, of Stony Creek, or Tank Hollow) holding in its sweetness, in both mind and body.  But as I was reminded by a friend recently, we too must remember to breathe out.  Which is why the word hiatus from local history writing entered the vernacular of my brain today.

Taking in things of beauty is high on my lists of things to do to relax as the last two weeks show here.  Looking back in such as recent a proximity as today, tells me that these whirlwind- of-good-time-memories-in-nature are all blurring together.  In a few months and in the ensuing years, they will only be traces of dust in the boot treads of my memory.  So I ask for my reader's indulgences to place this little resting spot here, a post of reflection of one of the most hoped for springs in recent memory.

The following pictures are representative of some high points of beauty atop some well known peaks around these parts, Mount Pisgah, above the Black Creek, and Sleeping Bear.  Interspersed and linking them together were hikes and bike rides along the Lehigh Gorge from Lehighton to Mud Run over these last two weeks.  All of it culminated with a satisfying Easter dinner eaten outside on a grand porch of a secluded cabin in White Haven.
She is just right - My beautiful wife Kim at Hawk
Falls as it empties over the Mud Run Gorge.

I look forward to possibly taking some time to sit and read and think about something other than the multiple stories swimming around in my frontal and parietal lobes that are willing their way out onto my keyboard through my fingertips.  Balance comes to mind.

Life can be as sweet as the teaberries found all around this county come May.  It can be as harsh as the roots of horseradish in a Dutch wife's herb garden too.  It's important to take in what is freely given to us.  It too is important to freely give.

Happy Springtime Carbon County.  Thank you.
Lock #1 of the upper Grand is newly exposed as progress toward a new bridge is made.
Old and New - As piers for the new bridge are prepared, a silent testimony to the olden days of steam trains looms
rusted at the right of the frame - an old water tender for the thirsty locomotives of the past.

The Rimbey twins clowning around at Hawk Falls entertains Kim.
Ron and Kim Along the Mud Run Gorge

Ron, Cris and Nate atop Sleeping Bear.

The Nesquehoning Junction control tower winds around the curve of the
trestle as the lookout from Mt Pisgah hovers overhead.
The forty or so odd parents and students of the Lehighton Area Middle School Fifth Grade out for the annual Spring hike to the top of Mt Pisgah and on out to the Hackelbernie Tunnel.  The hike is also completed each Fall as well.  This year's Spring Hike was on a beautiful day before Easter, April 19th.
The Black Creek Ravine is at right and the Lehigh descends past Penn Haven Junction at left.  The view from Dr. Stanley F. Druckenmiller's front porch of his old hunting cabin.  Today the property is claimed by the Lehigh Gorge State Park..

One of the Rimbey twins proves Carbon residents are friendly as he says hello to a sportsman on the fly-fishing-only
Mud Run Creek beneath the highest bridge on the Northeast Extension of the Turnpike. 
The Writer in Repose - Breathing in, breathing out.


  1. I love looking at all the photos(many of which are the happiest looking people), and the wondrous scenery that is Carbon County. It has taken most of my life living here to recognize the beauty of it, rather than shrugging it off when someone says they envy where I live. They are right and I have not take the time, with the exception of the last 5 years to realize this! Carbon County may have its faults, but what County doesn't? We live among the beauty of the mountains which hold the great falls and rivers for us to enjoy freely! If I enjoy nothing else for the rest of my life, besides my family...Living in and exploring Carbon County and all of it's little towns will surely go with me to the great beyond and it will NEVER be goodbye! Thanks for all the sharing with us that you do, Ron. I for one appreciate it!

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