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“I think the natural beauty in our area is distinctive to the college,” said Thomas E. Ask, professor of industrial design. For “at least 12 years,” Ask has taken his Penn College students (and some of their friends) on optional excursions to explore that beauty, namely at Rock Run. Located about 30 miles north of campus in the McIntyre Wild Area of Loyalsock State Forest near Ralston in Lycoming County, Rock Run offers an abundance of crystal clear streams, waterfalls, trails and cliffs to discover. “The students love our adventures,” Ask related. “I usually go once in the fall as a way for new students to get to know one another in the major. It’s a nice team-building exercise. Many students in our major are from the Philly and New Jersey area, so this is all new. I’ve been climbing since I was in college, so I love to share the fun.” The cliff they scaled on a recent expedition was a small one that Ask has used with newcomers for many years. Not from this area, the professor says he learned about Rock Run from a student years ago. The region’s scenic beauty continues to inspire him (and his young charges). “We are within an hour of downhill and cross-country skiing, rock climbing, caving, sailing, kayaking, powerboating, backpacking and hiking,” Ask added, expounding on the options. “Nature provides a refuge from the stress and dynamics of campus life.”

– Photos by Tim Wegman, student photographer


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