Pleasant Valley Park

Pleasant Valley Park is a small park nestled in Murrysville, Pennsylvania. During my trip there I decided to venture multiple trails. These trails included: Hanks Trail, Chestnut Trail, Brien Palmer Trail, Lower Farm Road, Red Oak Trail, Hemlock Trail, and Main Farm Road. Hiking with me, of course, were my fiancé, Brian, and my little hiking buddy and photo star, Rusty. When we arrived, there was a small parking lot with the tiny sign to mark its place. Once we walked onto the first trail, being Hanks Trail, we saw the steep drop.

When we climbed down the hill there was a small green pond to our left and then a steep hill to the right. The green pond interested me quite a bit. The level of green color that it was gave it an eerie feeling. I also hiked into the small patch of woods next to it to get a shot of the icicles that formed around the rocks where the water was flowing down the hill. The air was cool and crisp that day, with the sun peeking up through the trees now and then. At the top of the hill, there was an old springhouse as it was noted on Pleasant Valley’s map. The structure was barely standing. Its outer frame was all that was left standing. 

Once we were finished exploring the springhouse, we decided to head onto our first trail. The trail took us through a meadow with tall brown grass, which looked dead, but to me, it was beautiful. The grass was swaying in the wind, and with the sun right behind all of it, it was just a great view to take in on such a beautiful day. Once we made our way through the meadow, we made our way onto some different trails. Along one of the trails, we stumbled across a little gnome family, barely hidden under a sheltered rock. It was too cute not to photograph. I haven’t seen something like that since my trip to Frick Park with their fairy doors. The trails weren’t a difficult hike; they were very relaxing. Along some of the trails were little bridges for bikes to cross over ditches carefully and a small stream. It was Rusty’s first time stepping into the water, and it was the one of the cutest memories for us. He wasn’t quite sure what to make of the water, at first, pawing at it as if it were some mystery. After a little though he decided to have at it and began running around in the water, having fun. 

We enjoyed our hike through the small park. We met some other people walking with their dogs, and a biker who we seemed always to run into, but smiled and said hello each time. While hiking the one trail, I became so excited when I found something I love to photograph. A wasp hive had fallen from a tree and landed quite nicely. Luckily, there were no wasps left inside, making my photographing a lot easier. If anyone knows me, I love taking photos of wasp hives whenever they are visible. Throughout the rest of the day, we continued to walk the park, enjoying our adventure, until sunset arrived. Once the sun started to slip behind the hill, I chose a spot to photograph, and we waited. It was cold once the sun disappeared, but we braved it, and I photographed the simple, yet still beautiful sunset. 

Overall, for a small park, we had a great adventure, filled with new memories. We are planning to head back to Pleasant Valley Park more often to enjoy the experience of being out in nature. Enjoy the other photographs I captured from our day!