Hiking and Natural Waterslides

A few weeks ago we took our yearly family vacation to my home, Uniontown, Pennsylvania. I’ve lived in Virginia Beach for nearly 30 years, but the mountains will always feel like home.  I know the exact spot on Route 17 in Virginia when we hit the crest of a hill and the mountains come into view for the very first time. I get excited every time, and Jon might possibly call me a tree hugger every time. Just maybe.

I’ve always wanted to take the kids to Ohiopyle State Park that is about thirty minutes from my parents’ house that has hiking, white water rafting, waterfalls, and natural water slides, but it seems like we always run out of time. Sometimes it’s really easy to slip into wishing that I did things but never taking the time to plan them out and make them happen. It’s such a bad habit to get stuck in, so this year, I made Ohiopyle a priority, and my mountain loving heart was in heaven.

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We went my sister and her family, which made the entire day even sweeter! And if they look familiar (minus the blue fohawks), theirs is the epic session I shot when I was there!

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Jon isn’t what you’d call a nature lover, but even though I had to convince him that he would like hiking (really, I promise, you’ll love it!), he had a good time. And he saw his first waterfall in real life! (What? Really?! Yes, really. Sad.)virginia-beach-family-photographer_0064virginia-beach-family-photographer_0063

This would be the fallen tree we either had to go over or crouch under. virginia-beach-family-photographer_0065virginia-beach-family-photographer_0068

I just love my crew! And Jon can take a good picture with instructions!

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I had to laugh when I saw this. This kid would sit down anywhere. Even on the side of a mountain!virginia-beach-family-photographer_0066

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One of my favorites from the day!virginia-beach-family-photographer_0074

After we hiked back over Meadow Run Trail, we arrived at the natural water slides. Yes! I was tempted to try it, but then I remembered my back probably wouldn’t be happy with that, so Rowan and I watched from the edge.

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The boys were brave enough to give it a go, and they both said it was pretty rough banging against all of the rock!virginia-beach-family-photographer_0072virginia-beach-family-photographer_0073

It was such a great morning, and sitting there along the rocks and water, I’ve never felt more at home. The beach maybe my home now, but my heart is always in the mountains. <3

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