I'm currently in the midst of planning three different lake weekends with various groups of friends for this upcoming summer and it has me legitimately yearning to be at the lake right now.
It's a known fact that I love to be outdoors. I take every chance I have to be outside. This means things like hiking, running, outdoor brunches/happy hours, skiing, or even just strolling around town on a nice day.
That being said one of my favorite weekend trips to take are lake trips.
Growing up I lived 10 minutes from a pretty big lake, 20 minutes from three different huge rivers, and right behind a large creek. Hanging out by the water (albeit not the same as beach water) was kind of my jam.
We swam, boated, rafted, and fished. My entire family, my neighborhood friends, and I were basically always outdoors.
Now that I'm older and I've moved to DC I get a sense of childhood nostalgia any time I get the chance to go to the lake. All of the activities and just being surrounded by woods and water is just so serene in a way that takes all my troubles away and relaxes me like no other.
As I've stressed a million times, DC is in a terrific geographic location to provide excellent weekend getaways to all types of places. I've talked about city day trips, hiking day trips, and beach day trips. Another, and likely my most favorite, are lake day trips/weekend getaways.
All within a few hours of DC are three of my favorites: Deep Creek Lake (MD), Smith Mountain Lake (VA), and Lake Ana (VA).
All of these lakes are situated in mountainous areas so they provide two of my favorites: hiking and water activities.
For today's post I am going to focus on my favorite of the three: Deep Creek, Maryland.
Deep Creek is about a three hour drive from Washington, D.C. but it's actually only a little over an hour from Pittsburgh, so growing up I spent a lot of time there.
This past Fall I had the honor of watching as many of my friends got married to the loves of their lives. One friend in particular, and also one of my best friends of over 15 years decided that a girls lake weekend was how she wanted to celebrate her Bachelorette. So, Deep Creek it was!
We stayed in a perfect log cabin that had multiple living/activity rooms, a hot tub, 4 bedrooms, and a loft. Honestly the log cabin was so nice and cozy that we could of just laid inside all weekend and been perfectly content.
But, of course, we didn't! Deep Creek is such a large lake that there was so much to do and we just couldn't justify not exploring.
As the lake is situated among the mountains of Western Maryland we decided we wanted to hike. Swallow Falls trails is perfect for large groups of people because it's a very easy trail with breathtaking views of the water falls. We spent the majority of Saturday (after a late night catching up over multiple bottles of wine Friday) exploring the trails and the falls and taking pictures because, DUH!
Saturday night was for cooking a family style dinner and sitting by the fire. One thing I miss most about growing up in Pittsburgh is being able to hang out by a bonfire any time I want. There are strict rules in VA and DC about fires so bonfires aren't a common activity... sad face. But, that weekend in Deep Creek we built a HUGE fire and sat around reminiscing, drinking beer, and eating s'mores. Life didn't get any better.
Sunday took a turn for the cold... which in September had us all excited because of the rapid approaching gorgeous fall weather. We still wanted to make the most of the weekend so we grabbed coffee and pastries on the lake and jumped in a couple of kayaks before hitting the road back to all of our respective homes.
If you're considering a weekend getaway for you and girlfriends, guys and their guy friends, just a big group of friends, or a family weekend you can't go wrong with a trip to Deep Creek. There is so much to do, the people are extremely nice and welcoming, and it will be an unforgettable and beautiful weekend.
Special note that it's also gorgeous in the winter and Wisp Ski Resort is located just nearby.... the lake isn't just for summer!
Comment below with your favorite lake trips and places to go!