Bushkill Falls Open and Upgraded

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BUSHKILL FALLS -- The reconstruction is over at a popular nature stop in the Poconos that was walloped when Hurricane Sandy came blowing through last year.

For the past four months, workers at Bushkill Falls have been cleaning up after Hurricane Sandy.

The storm caused massive trees to fall and damage sections of the park in Pike County.

But, tourists visiting that area now say they would never know a storm left behind such destruction.

Bushkill Falls in Pike County is nicknamed "The Niagara of Pennsylvania" for its eight waterfalls tucked in the wooded Pocono mountainside.

But if you look closely, you'll see some tree stumps and parts of the walkway that look brand new.

That's because when Hurricane Sandy blew through last fall, the storm left quite a mark.

"Hurricane Sandy put a big hurt on us. It was quite overwhelming. We had over 50 to 70 trees come down on the property. And, about 40 to 50 of them were on our trails, impacting foot traffic," said Donna Smith, the General Manager of Bushkill Falls.

The destruction was so bad, Bushkill Falls workers had to close the park early last fall.

Soon after, the clean up began, starting with weeks of tree removal.

But, tourists visiting the park now can't tell the difference.

"This place looks great," said Debbie Rosander of New Jersey.

Now, Bushkill Falls is hoping for many visitors this summer and fall, which workers are not too worried about attracting.

"Our phone has been ringing off the hook, emails, people are just anxious to get outside and do things," said Smith.

"This is really cool, it's a lot of fun. We had a blast hiking it. It's not something we're used to in Southern California because we have the cliffs over the ocean, but not necessarily the woods," said John Gornick of California.

One couple understands the importance of rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy. They run a bookstore in Ocean City, New Jersey, which sustained damage after Hurricane Sandy and are glad to see Bushkill Falls decided to rebuild, as well.

"We saw a lot of new construction, places where trees have been cut down and things have been repaired on the boardwalk and it seems to be a good place. It's pretty busy," said Rosander.

Also new to Bushkill Falls, a new outside deck that's attached next to the new food and beverage snack stand, which was gutted and renovated over the winter.

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