Pennsylvania March 03, 2016
This Epic Mountain In Pennsylvania Will Drop Your Jaw
Hawk Mountain, in Kempton, is the world’s first sanctuary for birds of prey. It is known throughout the region not only as a gorgeous spot to hike, but also as a unique vantage point from which, at certain times of year, you can see hundreds of migrating hawks.
In 1935, Hawk Mountain first opened to the public as a sanctuary. Before that, it was a place that hunters gathered to shoot the birds from the sky; thanks to the stewardship of Rosalie Edge, a conservation activist from New York. She transformed the mountain into a place of security for the hawks, and tranquility for nature lovers.
If you love birds, Hawk Mountain is the place for you (if you couldn't already tell from its name). Since 1934, 265 different species of birds have been documented here. About 65 different species tend to nest in the area, and each year 150 different species either pass through the area while migrating or spend the winter here.
Birds aside, Hawk Mountain is simply a gorgeous place. The preserve is 2,600-acres large and includes 8 miles of trails. Beyond this, you can visit the native plant garden, research center, and visitor center.
Whatever you do, though, don't go off-trail. I made this unwise decision many years ago, and six hours later finally found my way out of the woods. Had I been less lucky, I would be carving this article into the side of a tree rather than typing it on the comfort of my laptop....
Besides offering breathtaking vistas, Hawk Mountain's forest trails are also beautiful.
This is a place that will beckon you to return again, and again.
Check out this video to get a sense of what it’s like atop the Pinnacle, one of Hawk Mountain’s best lookouts.
Have you been here – or do you want to go?