While visiting my mother, who lives in Newtown, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, I wanted to continue with my regular walking routine if possible. I decided to see if I could construct an 8-mile walk, mostly out-and-back, including an exploration of Core Creek Park, a County park within easy walking distance of the retirement village where my mother lives. I ended up including a few detours, some intended and some unintended, illustrated in the GPS track of my walk.
Walking out to the main road across the grounds of the retirement village, I passed by some of the native plantings. This area has been recognized by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society with a 2011 Community Greening Award, and is a treat for residents to enjoy while out for a walk.
Next to the paths that go through the grounds there are a number of bird houses, each identified by a number. I found that several were occupied by tree swallows.
The swallows seemed to be used to having people walk by: they did fly off when I got too close, but until then they stayed perched on the bird houses, other posts, or signs and seemed to be checking out the area.
Once I left the retirement village grounds, I crossed the main road (State Rte 413 on the GPS track) and walked along a side road for about a half mile to the park entrance. Since there was essentially no shoulder on this road, I walked carefully facing traffic and was happy to note that, on a late Sunday morning, traffic was light. There were two short dead-end side roads on the way to the park entrance, and I walked up each one just to explore the area a little bit. A typical yard in this area is much larger than we are used to in California, and I found some beautiful azaleas in one yard with a pretty evergreen backdrop.
About a half mile up the road, I came to the entrance to Core Creek Park.
The park includes a lake, Lake Luxembourg, presumably formed by damming the creek. (I did not actually find the dam.) Though I initially walked along the main road through the park, later I found a paved multi-use trail that more or less skirted the lake shore. It is a pleasant park, with individual picnic tables as well as larger covered picnic areas suitable for larger groups.
Along the way I came across a robin, most likely looking for a tasty meal near the side of the trail.
I walked all the way across the park, less than 2 miles along the road, and returned via a partly different route along the multi-use trail. The weather was perfect for a walk through the park.
The retirement village is, to paraphrase its web site, guided in its philosophy and principles by the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). Immediately adjacent is a PK-8 (pre-kindergarten through eighth grade) school and George School, a well-known high school (grades 9-12), both Quaker schools. Near the center of the George School campus is the Meeting House, originally built in 1812 and located in Philadelphia, and later moved to the George School campus.
I had never been on the George School campus before, and I enjoyed the serene atmosphere as well as the stately buildings and beautiful, mature trees on the grounds. I will look forward to further explorations on a future visit.