The Laurel mountain hiking trail is a seventy mile trek along a stretch on top of the Allegheny highland mountains. Trekking this can take an individual any number of days or hours. Most people set aside seven days to hike stop and look and find natural treasures. Others as in the Laurel highland race cover the seventy miles in blistering time of eleven hours ,I find that unimaginable after hiking it in four and a half days. There are shelter areas at several points along the way to set up a tent or if you call ahead and reserve a lean two shelter to sleep. There is potable water at all shelter areas but can be a bit rusty in some. The streams run clean but I always purify before drinking it. If you are a hiker and your looking for a challenge this may be it.
Wow two Frank Lloyd Wrights in the same town...Kentuck Knob is a smaller private home built on the top of a hill, with a style all its own. Great views and don't miss the sculpture garden, it is full of suprises, and some famous names in modern art.
Far less known and travelled than Fallingwater, and a much more intimate experience.
Walk across the the curved bridge with its distinctive arches, to the forested peninsula, surrounded on 3 sides by the looping Youghiogeny river. The trails are flat and easy walking - follow the black blazed. It is a little over 3km to complete the loop trail.
After rails, the trails on the peninsula can be a little muddy and slippery, but not insumountably so. There are outlook points giving access to the river on the loop.
The Cucumber Run, a tributary to the Youghiogheny River tumbles off a 30 foot high sandstone shelf into the gorge carved by the Yough. It is pretty spectacular if the stream is running high, as it was on the wet day we were in the Ohiopyle State Park. The parking area is just off the Kentuck Road, and it takes only a few minutes to walk to the falls, along a path and stairs bordered by native rhododendrons.
You can rock hop right behind the falls, or walk downstream on the trail to reach the Yough, where a view of kayakers running the rapids is possible.
Visitors to Frank Lloyd Wright's 'Fallingwater, should not miss 'Kentuck Knob', a house designed by Wright for the Hagan family. Wright was 86 when it was commissioned and is one of the last houses he designed. He was occupies on many projects at the time, and famously said he could “shake it (Kentuck Knob) out of his sleeve at will”, never even setting foot on the site just once, a short visit during the construction phase.
As with many Wright houses it is a building of angles, a crescent shape nestling into the contours of the hill, oriented to the south and west for the best light. The living and bedroom wings pivot from an octagonal stone kitchen core, whose skylight penetrates the copper roof.
It is a cosy place, it's small scale a contrast to the show-off nature of nearby Fallingwater.
You can only visit the house by a guided tour. Tours cost $22 (2013) and can be booked by telephone, email, or through though the Fallingwater website. A minibus takes visitors to the house from the Visitor centre, but you may walk back down via the Sculpture Garden if you like.
Overlook point on Laurel Highlands trail.
This is a photo of Mike sitting on a rock jutting out over the ridge.
The first must see is Fallingwater, perhaps Frank Lloyd Wright's most famous private home. It is litterally perched over a waterfall!