A day on the Wissahickon Valley Trail began by riding up the Schuylkill River Path to the trailhead just up from Center City. The 28 mile round trip included a stop in a pine grove of unusually tall and slender trees growing atop a ridge overlooking the creek. They looked different than the common pitch pines of the local Pine Barrens and surrounding forests but stood out in a familiar way all their own. The trees and the smell came as such a surprise that they caused me to stop in my track. I thought about Flagstaff, Arizona and the Lodge Pole Pine forest a world away.
From there the trail swooped on and quickly dropped back down to the flowing Wissahickon creek. The waters were teeming with the invisible trout stocked only a week ago for the opening of the fly season. The ride was through contrasts of natural and not. An experience, I decided, no more than complete without a ride down the Rocky Steps.