One of my favorite places to visit in the area this time of the year is the Shenandoah National Park. It’s only about an hour drive away from where I live, so it’s a perfect destination for a last minute weekend activity. I often go there for a day hike or even just for a relaxing drive to enjoy the scenery. On a Saturday morning in October 2010, I went for a hike to the Hawksbill Summit. The trail was not really long (around 3 miles round trip from the parking lot), but one part of it was quite a steep uphill climb, so it was a good workout. The view from the summit was quite nice — it is the highest point within the park. Part of the trail overlaps with the Appalachian Trail, so you get to experience a little bit what it’s like to hike the famous trail (and perhaps come across hikers who are in the middle of doing the long journey). The photo below was taken at a lookout near the summit, using my then newly-acquired Tokina 11-16 mm f/2.8 ultra-wide angle lens. The lens helped took in more of the scenery and provided the dramatic view of the clouds above.