It was February 1st in Philadelphia and it hasn't snowed for more than a few hours so far this winter. My girlfriend and I couldn't deal with that any longer and needed to go somewhere to see snow. We had no idea Cherry Springs State Park could deliver so well.
It already took 4 hours to get to my hometown the night before to break up the drive and would take an additional 2 hours to get to desolate and hopefully snow covered forests. We decided to take my parents Jeep because almost no car can handle whatever elements we were about to face. Almost two hours into the loud and slow drive, there still wasn't even an inch of snow on the ground. I began to worry, thinking I wasted 6 hours of driving and still wouldn't see snow this winter. But the mountain is a completely different area.
5 minutes from our final destination and continuing to climb in elevation, the surrounding area began to explode with snow. In an instant, we were traveling through winding backroads and snow could be seen on all sides. The drive was worth it.
I had only ever been here in the summer before but quickly found the dirt road I remembered. It was now covered in snow and ice and was part of the snow mobile trail that followed the side of the main road. We slowly drove down the road until we reach our final destination, a small overlook facing the forest. We stopped to take in the view and slide around on more snow and ice than we have seen all winter. This was why we came.
Unfortunately, getting back down the road wasn't as easy to start. Being very ill prepared, I had no shovel or anything to lay down to gain traction on the ice. Thankfully, a large flat rock nearby was just the right size for our one tire to climb over and build enough momentum to move forward. Our stress subsided as we slowly drove down the rest of the ice covered trail.
Before we left though, another Jeep was doing the same thing as us. An old man and his handsome black Lab were taking in the sights and enjoying the beautiful winter day along the snowy Jeep trails. After somewhat laughing at us for being so poorly prepared, he told us about all the adventures he's been on, from driving lifted vans through the Rocky Mountains, to driving down the coast with his dog, Ottie. Now he plots off road trails in his free time for other members of the Jeep community to share. I always love meeting people who enjoy the outdoors, because they're almost always so nice and they can have some of the most interesting stories that you'll never forget.
It was time to go though, as we hadn't eaten in quite some time and also forget all the snacks. The snow quickly dissipated as we left but I'm still so thankful I was able to have at least one snow day this winter.