Photographing the Fall Foliage in Pennsylvania

Fall is one of my favorite times to take photos. The trees change colors and the light turns soft. The chilly weather is perfect for long hikes in search of the perfect shots. This is my unofficial guide to fall photography in Pennsylvania. 

I took two trips this past month, and captured some great fall shots in Pennsylvania State Parks. Ricketts Glen State Park was the first adventure, a short day trip in late September. In mid-October, we spent two nights tent camping at Tobyhanna State Park in the Poconos. 

My husband loves to fish, and I always try and get some shots of his catch when we explore the outdoors together.

The photo on the right is of a pickerel he caught (and released) at Ricketts Glen State Park. The photo on the right was taken at Tobyhanna State Park, and shows his chatterbait. I love taking photos of the bait almost as much as the fish, since they are always bright and unique. The details and colors come through beautifully on my 35mm lense. 

Landscape Shots

Some of my favorite shots are landscapes, and when you have such beautiful lakes to shoot in the fall, the possibilities are endless.

During the camping trip at Tobyhanna, I woke up bright and early to shoot the sunrise over the lake. I highlighted the bright colors in the trees, as well as the reflections in the clear water. The trees in the autumn in Pennsylvania change to a wide range of colors and hues, making beautiful landscapes easy to capture. 

At Ricketts Glen, earlier in the season, I caught more vibrant fall colors around the lake, but with much more green in the pictures. The grass in the lake was bright green, contrasting with the orange and red trees on the other side of the water. The boat tied to the pier was solitary, and made a great addition to a landscape shot. 

Campfire Cooking

Camping means campfire cooking, and we made lots of delicious food on our fire!

We also made hot beverages to warm us in the chilly fall air. In the morning I made coffee in the aeropress, and at night, we warmed cider to sip on by the fire. Both times we relied on our trusty kettle, which I shot as it heated over a smoky fire. 

We made fried potatoes, bacon, and eggs for breakfast, the perfect fuel for our adventures during the day. 

I incorporated the smoke from the campfire into my shots of the kettle, and used them to create depth. The most intriguing elements to the other food photos are the bright colors. The colorful potatoes, bacon, and flames underneath all provide vibrance to the shots. 


Ricketts Glen State Park is known for its gorgeous waterfalls, and we saw quite a few during our hike. Nature photographers come from all over to get shots of these natural wonders. I took photos of a couple of these waterfalls, but will bring my tripod next time to get some good long-exposure shots of the falls. 

For these shots, since I didn’t have a tripod, I focused on vantage point. To get the second shot, I crouched down close to the water. I used the surrounding rocks as framing elements to capture the size of the falls. 

Morning Sunlight

Finally, our fall adventures came to an end, but I took photos til the end. I took a few more shots of the sun coming up over our campsite at Tobyhanna. The trees, with all their varied colors, made an excellent filter for the sunlight in the morning. 

If you are looking for the best ways to take beautiful photos in the fall in Pennsylvania, look no further than the trees. Beautiful shots and landscapes are hidden in plain site! The state parks are the perfect place to start, and you can find the parks near you using the Pennsylvania DCNR’s Park Finder.

As a Philly photographer it’s important to get out of the city every once in a while and enjoy nature. As a Pennsylvania photographer, these two parks are ones that you can’t miss. 

Nature photography is inspiring. There are still a few weeks of fall colors left, so get out to the scenic areas in Pennsylvania, and capture the colors! Happy shooting. 

4 thoughts on “Photographing the Fall Foliage in Pennsylvania”

    1. Thank you! I actually haven’t done much of my own coding. The theme is from Inkhive Themes, I have just tried to keep it as clean and up-to-date as possible.

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