Monday, July 23, 2012

Falling Waters

We returned to our native State of Pennsylvania for a few days to act as tourists and see some of the sites.  I was hesitant to post about it, because it wasn't traditional hiking.  But after thinking about all the miles on my feet during this trip - yesterday alone, I took more than 26,400 steps - I figured it was close enough to hiking to write about.  We'll start with a post about Frank Lloyd Wright's masterpiece, Falling Waters, which is near Ohiopyle State Park (which looks like a very cool place, by the way.  Maybe another trip?)

I have never seen anything like Falling Waters, a large home built into a waterfall.  It is beyond incredible.  It was built for the Kaufmann's, a wealthy Pittsburgh department store owner late in the Depression.  Later, their son donated the home and land to the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy.  I am sure that there is tons of detailed information about this site that you can easily get to, and so am not going to try to duplicate it.  I will just say that was my favorite part of the whole four day trip (today was strictly a tiring travel day).  If you have not seen it, go!  I will repeat that statement: if you have not seen it, go!  I bet spring when the rhododendron is in bloom, and October with the fall colors would be amazing times to go.

Here are few photos from our visit last Friday.  Photos were not allowed inside or out during the tour, so I got these afterwards from the outside.

One of my favorite features of the home is the "Hatch," which leads from the living room to a small platform over Bear Run.

 Falling Water is surrounded by nature.  The 1,600 acres bought by the Kaufmann's are now owned by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, along with several thousand additional acres that the WPC acquired separately.
 View of Falling Water from about 100-120 meters, looking up Bear Run.
 Here is a close up of the home from the same distance.  The cantilevered decks over the water falls is the most distinctive feature, but there are so many other features carefully designed and built into the home.
 Here is a zoom into the falls under and just below the home.  There is not a spot in the home where you cannot hear the running water.  How soothing it must have been to vacation here!


  1. Thank you anyway for the advice to go, but I have wanted to see this place since I was a boy. No arm twisting needed, just time.

  2. We will have to go there some time. Looks fabulous.
    That was a lot of steps!!!

  3. Hi Les - if you can find the time - a most precious resource, I agree - it is one of a kind place to see.

    Hi Karen - from your place in Western Maryland, I bet you could make this a long and very interesting day trip. Yep, a lot of steps - that is what my pedometer and legs told me at the end of the day.