Swallow Falls State Park
Garrett County, Maryland
27 April 2019
Today looked like a sunny day, so we decided to take a drive somewhere. Beth is starting to work on her gardens (flowers and vegetables) for summer, so I suggested we drive down to Redhouse, Maryland to a flower greenhouse she really likes - the Redhouse Greenhouse. It didn't take much convincing.
On the way there, I suggested we take a little detour down by Deep Creek Lake and see Swallow Falls State Park. I've heard about it before (and may have been there once as a kid in scouts) and was curious. So was Beth. Just south of Deep Creek, we turned west about 5 miles towards the park. When we arrived there were only about 5 cars in the parking lot.
We picked up a map at the ranger station and proceeded to walk the 1.5-mile loop past 4 waterfalls: Muddy Creek Falls (the largest and very photogenic), Upper and Lower Swallow Falls, and Tolliver Falls (the smallest, part of a small stream that empties into the larger Youghiogheny River ("River that flows the wrong way"). Come join us!
From the parking lot, we walked about 1/4 mile to the first set of falls.
This is the Muddy Creek Falls. Just a few feet lower than Blackwater Falls in West Virginia, but still very magnificent.
There was a nice set of wooden stairs to the base.
Enjoying the day!
The rapids below Muddy Creek Falls
From there, we starting hiking along the river on the rustic trail.
There were lots of interesting details along the trail - rocks, moss, and other photo ops.
Apparently, this was a popular spot with the rich and famous. (We are neither)
Interesting collection of moss and other plant life on this log.
The trail led us under some large rock outcroppings.
Some of the virgin hemlock trees in this area are over 300 years old.
More interesting plant life.
View of the Lower Swallow Falls (foreground) and Upper Swallow Falls (way in the background).
Hurricane Sandy in 2012 left quite a few branches and felled trees along the river banks.
Another scenic part of the trail.
Water was trickling over the rocks along the trail.
Interesting patterns of moss on this downed tree.
View of the Upper Swallow Falls through a clearing.
Beth said this looks like the Wisconsin Dells.
Time for another family photo.
Long set of stairs back up to the trail. This was our Planet Fitness workout for the day.
More interesting plant life on a trailside log.
The Tolliver Falls is part of a small stream that empties into the others.
Small but peaceful sets of waterfalls.
Sit a spell. Relax!
Oh, next time I'm bringing a pillow so I can stretch out for a nice long nap.
Another trailside photo op.
In just a few minutes, we were back at the car. The parking lot was now full with 50 or 60 cars.
Glad we came early!
We both agreed we will need to come back when the rhododendron bloom in early June. And in the fall with the trees turning colors.
Next stop - Redhouse Greenhouse
One of Beth's favorite destinations. Located on Rt 219 just about 2 miles north of Rt 50 (Redhouse MD),
and about 5 miles south of Oakland MD.
So many plants, they won't all fit inside the greenhouse.
Beth showed great restraint and only bought about 6 plants. (Probably because she bought about 20 the day before in Blacksville - LOL).
By the way - the town spelling is listed as either Redhouse or Red House, depending on where you look. It's 50/50.
Hope you enjoyed spending the day with us.
For more information on Swallow Falls State Park: http://dnr.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/western/swallowfalls.aspx