jpamusher`s travel pix - 1469 - Delaware Water Gap May 21-22 2013

This was an overnite backpacking trip along the Appalachian Trail on the PA side of the Delaware Water Gap. I hadn`t been here since the mid 90`s and wanted to see the area again. Highlights included an impressive rock formation---Wolf Rocks---and a side trail leading to Columcille,an early Celtic Christian church.

Delaware Water Gap May 21-22 2013

Interstate 80 Bridge
Interstate 80 Bridge
The I-80 bridge spans the Delaware river at Delaware Water Gap,seen here as we ascended the Appalachian Trail climbing out of the gap. I had parked on the NJ side and crossed this bridge on a sidewalk. The walkway would actually shake as massive 18 wheelers blasted by.
Hazy view from Mt Minsi summit
Hazy view from Mt Minsi summit
After about a 2 mile climb,the Appalachian Trail---AT---reached the summit of Mt Minsi. This mountain marks the PA side of the Delaware Water Gap.
Powerline cut at Totts gap
Powerline cut at Totts gap
Hiking the mostly level trail from the Mt Minsi summit,we reached Totts gap after 2.5 miles. The powerline cut illustrates the wilderness extending in both directions away from the AT.
View back towards Totts gap
View back towards Totts gap
A nice rock outcrop along the AT afforded this view.
Wesley at the Kirkridge bald
Wesley at the Kirkridge bald
The Kirkridge retreat has a significant presence in this area. They sponsor a trail shelter near this open grassy area. Views here are impressive!
View from the Kirkridge Bald
View from the Kirkridge Bald

Kirkridge trail shelter
Kirkridge trail shelter
We stopped here for a brief rest and to resupply with water.
Trail mileage
Trail mileage
We encountered some "trail magic" just before reaching this sign. Some kind soul had left a cooler filled with mountain dew cans! Quite refreshing on a humid day!
Backcountry pond
Backcountry pond
a small spring fed this pond just off of the AT.
Bug
Bug
A small insect crawls on a mushroom near the pond.
Wolf Rocks lookout
Wolf Rocks lookout
Hiking back the next morning from our campsite,we recrossed Wolf Rocks.
Looking down from Wolf Rocks
Looking down from Wolf Rocks

The AT on a misty morning
The AT on a misty morning

White Appalachian Trail blaze
White Appalachian Trail blaze

Columcille megalith park
Columcille megalith park
This is the entrance to Columcille,a Celtic worship site. The massive stones are like a US stonhenge! The area was reached via a steep side trail leading down the mountain from the AT. Nice to explore the place again as I hadn`t been here since the mid 90`s.
Columcille megalith park
Columcille megalith park

Columcille megalith park
Columcille megalith park
This massive round stone was most unusual!
24 columcille.jpg
24 columcille.jpg
24 columcille.jpg 2013-05-22
Writing on stone?
Writing on stone?
There appears to be weathered writing on this stone,but I was unable to decipher it.
Chapel
Chapel
Small circular stone chapel. The thick stone walls were responsible for the coolness of the interior.
28.JPG
28.JPG
28.JPG 2013-05-22
29 refreshingly cool inside the chapel.jpg
29 refreshingly cool inside the chapel.jpg
29 refreshingly cool inside the chapel.jpg 2013-05-22
Chapel at night
Chapel at night
A bit of digital artistry here to simulate night inside the stone chapel. Imagine being in here on a chilly night,the wind howling without and the interior bathed in warm candlelight!
Unique altar
Unique altar
A most unusual altar. Rather than a tabernacle,a solitary stone sits atop it.
Stonhenge at Columcille
Stonhenge at Columcille

Columcille megalith park
Columcille megalith park

37 chapel.jpg
37 chapel.jpg
37 chapel.jpg 2013-05-22
38 entrance.JPG
38 entrance.JPG
38 entrance.JPG 2013-05-22
39 entrance.JPG
39 entrance.JPG
39 entrance.JPG 2013-05-22
Kirkridge bald
Kirkridge bald
Hiking back toward the Delaware Water Gap,we stopped for lunch at the Kirkridge bald.
Mt Minsi view
Mt Minsi view
unlike the previous day,the view was a tad more clear as we reached the Water Gap in late afternoon.
Evening at the Water Gap
Evening at the Water Gap
We recrossed the I-80 bridge to NJ. Wes and I enjoyed a brief swim in the Delaware River.

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4/24/2014 4:05:00 AM