As many of you know, the Waterfall Wonderland in SGL 13 is a place of amazing natural beauty. I love it for not only its waterfalls, but also its isolation, deep gorges, and large trees. I returned a few weeks ago to explore two tributaries of Sullivan Branch-Hunts Run and Pigeon Run. I explored each tributary on separate hikes.
First I hiked to Hunts Run. Thanks to recent rains, Sullivan Branch and Sullivan Falls were flowing high. I made my way up Sullivan Branch, enjoying the gorge, rapids, and cascades. I saw Pigeon Run Falls with its plummeting sheet of water and continued up the creek, enjoying all the falls and deep pools.
I crossed Sullivan Branch and hiked up the slope, reaching an old grade that brought me to Hunts Run. The hike up Hunts Run was scenic, but there were no waterfalls, just non-stop cascades over mossy boulders. This glen was scenic and isolated. At the top I explored some large cliffs and overhangs. What was most impressive was a forest of old growth hemlocks, with many large trees.
I then made my way back down to Sullivan Branch, and returned to my car.
My second hike took me up Pigeon Run, a stream well known for all its waterfalls. This hike did not disappoint. This creek had five or six waterfalls in beautiful grottos and overhanging ledges. The last falls was a slide that spread out like a fan, just below a private property line.
Pigeon Run became a gauntlet of steep boulders and more cascades in a very rugged glen. Many trilliums grew on the boulders. I followed the game lands boundary to a stunning place at the top of the gorge.
Massive, ancient hemlocks surrounded this place, as cliffs and ledges rose over me. At the top was a beautiful 40ish foot falls that tumbled down three or four drops. I called it the Falls of the Hemlocks, located at N41 20.815 W 076 19.825.
This felt like a wild, primeval place. I followed the cliff rim west, back to Sullivan Branch. This was a beautiful place with large cliffs crowned with more large hemlocks. There were views of the gorge below through the trees.
I made my way down the slope, passing boulders and rock outcrops back to the unblazed trail above Sullivan Branch, which I took back to my car at Sullivan Falls.