After hiking Clendenin Branch and Lower Jerry Run Natural Area the day before, I slept well in my tent as owls hooted in the night. I had a plan for the following morning- to get up early and drive to Hyner View to check out the views. My hope was that there would be fog in the valleys, offering views above the clouds.
My plan worked. I awoke and was in my car before 6 a.m. The air was chilly. The valleys were concealed in fog and a heavy dew covered the grass and my tent. I drove to Hyner View on a winding road. I reached the top and was treated to an amazing view above the clouds as the plateaus rose into the distance. I also noticed the temperature was noticeably warmer than down in the valley. As the sun rose, color spread from the sky with pink, orange, and yellow. The clouds illuminated and slowly rolled, concealing lower ridges, and then revealing them with wisps of mist. A window in the clouds would form, offering a view of the mountains and hills.
The sun cast the tops of the mountains in a golden glow and soon electrified the clouds. Streams of fog and mist flowed from the valleys and glens, swirling into the clouds above the river. It was phenomenal.
I eventually returned to my car. I had this spectacle all to myself, and some goldfinches. I drove down the mountain and re-entered the clouds. I stopped to look at them. They were moving like waves in slow motion, as light, feathery mist would rise from the top of the cloud layer and dissipate into the air. Pure magic. I continued my descent into the foggy, milky underworld as my next hike in the Quehanna Wild Area awaited.