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Take a walk on the WILD side

Written by Shannon Fourlas

Road trips! Who doesn’t love loading up the car with a bunch of tasty treats and taking a drive to a new place? Road trips are almost always guaranteed to be a great time, and It had been quite some time since any of the Pixel & Hammer crew had the chance to take a road trip. So when presented with the opportunity to drive up north to meet with a client, we were jumping for joy. Literally!

We all met at the office and loaded up the car with our bags, beverages, and of course a few tasty treats. We filled the gas tank, started the GPS, and headed north. We knew we would head towards Lock Haven, Pennsylvania and from there we would explore ‘The Wilds’ of the Pennsylvania Northwest. We had it all planned out, and according to Google maps it would only take us a little over four hours to get to our hotel in DuBois, with bathroom breaks and sightseeing stops taken into consideration.

Eight hours later...we made it to DuBois.

Although the drive took longer than expected, it was so wonderful to take a few detours and really explore The Pennsylvania Wilds, which was our goal all along.

If you hadn’t guessed it yet, our new client is The Pennsylvania Wilds, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to work with them! The goal of the new PA Wilds site is to help promote and encourage tourism to The Pennsylvania Wilds and what better way to do market research than to explore the area ourselves!

We traveled north to Lock Haven and from there headed northwest on PA-120W to get to our first sightseeing stop: Hyner View State Park. The views were really incredible, but unfortunately we were not able to stay long and take in as much as the view as we would have liked due to a storm heading in our direction. We took a few pictures of the magnificent scenery and hopped back in the car to beat the storm.

From there, we headed directly west on PA-120W, through some beautiful landscapes and along the Elk Scenic Drive. We made a few more stops along the way, to check out a few more sightseeing locations. Unfortunately, due to the time of day, we did not see any Elk at the pit stops.

Fun Fact: If you are planning a trip to Elk Country, your chances of spotting an Elk increase during dawn and dusk, especially in September and October. Since our trip occurred in the end of August and we were not at any of the sightseeing spots during dawn or dusk, and we began thinking that we wouldn’t see any Elk. Imagine our excitement when we started seeing them out our windows in backyards and fields on the way to DuBois!

When we finally had made it to DuBois, we were ready for dinner and decided to check out a local spot that had great reviews. Luigi’s Ristorante provided us with great service, fantastic food and they were even nice enough to take our picture at the restaurant. The staff was wonderful and filled us in on a brief history of the building and by the end of our dinner, we felt like we were part of the Luigi’s family. If you are in the DuBois area, we highly recommend stopping in and having a meal at this fine establishment, you won’t be disappointed!

After dinner, we ventured to our hotel and settled in for the night. The next day, we met with our client in order to really dig into the main goals and missions for the future of their new site. As a bonus we got to experience some local favorites in the area. We had lunch at an adorable little cafe called Tablespoons, where the server was also the owner! The building was old and magnificent with enormously high ceilings and an overwhelming amount of character. There was no disappointed patron either, the food was great!

To end our trip, we had a personal tour of a local landmark and staple of the area: Straub Brewery. The brewery is a family owned and operated establishment that has been in St. Mary’s, PA since 1872 and is the third oldest brewery in the United States. We toured their facility and got samples from the ‘endless tap’. The brewery helps the community and surrounding areas by not only providing employment to those in the area but also by promoting the efforts of The PA Wilds!

Our drive home was just as beautiful as the drive there, as we traveled through the State College area and eventually into Perry County. Our team learned a lot on this road trip but most importantly we were able to truly experience a small portion of The PA Wilds. We recommend that if you have the opportunity to travel to the northern part of Pennsylvania, that you take advantage of the beautiful landscapes of The PA Wilds. Fortunately, you’ll soon be able to find out everything you need to know about the area, once we launch their new website!! Stay tuned!

See more by Shannon Fourlas