Autumn in Pennsylvania is multi-sensory event that must be experienced to be completely understood. It’s very easy to see autumn as a dull and dreary end to the summer, but it really depends upon your perspective. Growing up in Pennsylvania, you learn that autumn is merely a transition to something new.

As the days continue to be warm and sunny, the evenings grow colder. This makes way for snuggling near campfires with the ones you love as the evening air is filled with the aroma of burning wood.

Lake Julia, Mercer County. Photo by Laura Ackley.

You may wear t-shirts, shorts, and sandals during the day, but come night time, wool sweaters, jeans, and sneakers are warranted. There’s something special about putting on jeans after having worn shorts all summer long. And there’s something comforting about the scratchy wool keeping your body warm, while the evening air chills your hands and face.

Grilling burgers and hot dogs for dinner is traded for homemade chili or chicken soup. In central Pennsylvania, it’s not just soup, but chicken corn soup. A tradition from the the Pennsylvania Dutch, it’s a meal that should not be missed. It’s thick chicken broth with plenty of corn and other vegetables from the last of the summer harvest. With chunks of chicken and some chopped hard-boiled eggs, this sweet and savory dish will warm you from the inside.

Last, but certainly not least, is the turning of the foliage. With her graceful hand, Mother Nature paints the hills with colors so vibrant, they will live on in your memory long after you view them. The smells of the fallen leaves will also trigger memories of the experience for years to come. As you hike along one of many of the Pennsylvania mountain trails, the leaves crunch under your feet as animals prepare for the coming winter.

Indiana County. Photo by Shirley Mains, courtesy of Gash Mains.

Make time to take a road trip through the rolling hills on a leisurely Sunday drive, while the visual splendor of distant mountains provides a stunning backdrop.

As it stimulates all five of your senses and creates memories that will last a lifetime, autumn in Pennsylvania is certainly a special time.

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Jason Krysinski is a lifelong resident of Pennsylvania. He’s been in hotel management for 18 years. He’s passionate about writing, food, history, and travel. Writing for Pinpoint unifies all of his passions. He’s always looking to discover new and off the beaten path locations throughout the state. If you have any suggestions, email him at jason@pinpointpennsylvania.com