6 Must-Visit Hiking Trails in Pennsylvania
Summer is the best season for embarking on treks of all kinds in Pennsylvania. Regardless of the ascent, these “6 Must-Visit Hiking Trails in Pennsylvania” provide a pleasant & breezy environment that will make even the hardest hike enjoyable. The state has a wide range of hiking paths: from short to lengthy, & even some tricky climbs. The weather is almost always suitable, in that it’s rarely ever too hot. With just some light clothing, a small backpack with plenty of water, & Pennsylvania’s mild air, you’ll be able to fully enjoy these beautiful summer walks…
***Author’s Note: As I’ve never personally visited Pennsylvania, this post was written in collaboration with HolidayKeepers ~ a vacation rental company that allows you to rent gorgeous mansions, cozy cabins, beach houses, or expansive villas; very similar to Airbnb or VRBO. They rent properties primarily on the East Coast, in Texas & Florida.
Map of Pennsylvania Hikes
HIckory Run State Park (Poconos)
Pine Grove Furnace State Park (Appalachian Trail)
Ohiopyle State Park (Ferncliff Peninsula)
Great Allegheny Passage
Standing Stone Trail
Get Ready for Your Adventure
1. The Appalachian Trail
The Appalachian Trail, surrounded by numerous historical sites, will have you discovering new vistas all along the route. The entire Appalachian, dubbed the “Grandad of the Trails,” spans 2,190 miles & passes through 14 different states: including Pennsylvania, & provides a breathtaking perspective of the surrounding landscape. The Conservancy’s Visitor Center at Boiling Springs & Pine Grove Furnace State Park are some historical monuments you’ll discover as you hike the Appalachian through Pennsylvania ~ & right next to Pine Grove Park is the Appalachian Trail Museum.
Summer is the best time to explore these routes as you’re not restricted to open-season hunting pathways, other travel challenges, & heavy rains that can make climbing more dangerous.
2. Hickory Run State Park ~ Poconos Mountains
With endless trails, Hickory Run State Park lets you choose from courses you can conquer in one day, or climbs you can explore over the course of a week. You get to soak in the sights of waterfalls, view the majestic landscape of a massive boulder field, plan a picnic, or go swimming in your very own soaking pool. The Poconos also offer various adventure activities for every fitness level.
3. Montour Trail
The Montour Trail, formerly renowned for its abandoned railroads that followed the central-line west & south of Pittsburgh, contains paths that follow practically the entire length of these old tracks. The walkway, which was carved in the late 1800s, connected several coal mines. At 63 miles long, this is one of the country’s most extended non-motorized rail tracks. From Pittsburgh to Washington, D.C., the entire course is 330 miles long. The Montour Trail provides an easy & level trek for most non-hikers, allowing visitors to simply focus on the vistas & natural surroundings.
4. Ferncliff Peninsula
The Ferncliff Peninsula is surrounded by sea, & located in the middle of Ohiopyle State Park. It’s home to a unique environment not found in many other parts of the country: housing some of the most unusual varieties of plants. You can also explore the state park here, which spans over 20,000 acres. Get a game-plan going before you travel by looking at a map to see which trails are most appealing to you: there’s a lot to choose from here!
5. Standing Stone Trail
Feed the adrenaline junkie in you with a trail that offers steep climbs! Part of the Eastern Trail Network, Standing Stone lets you explore the main course, which connects with other side trails offering more vertical elevation: perfect for moderate hiking. The trail leads with a rough path through the heart of central Pennsylvania, graded with elevations. There are easier, flatter trails if climbing isn’t something you enjoy. Trails are marked with different colors to denote paths that suit beginners, intermediate, etc.
If you’re one for views, the Stone Valley Vista Loop offers majestic views of the horizon, making for a picturesque moment.
6. Great Allegheny Passage
Stroll down a section of one of the country’s most well-known (& possibly HAUNTED??!) rail trails. The Great Allegheny Passage begins in Pittsburgh, & runs all the way to Washington, D.C. In comparison to what its name implies: this hike is pretty straightforward. The path goes through several villages, allowing you to rest & get prepared for the next part of your adventure. You can also venture off-the-beaten track by visiting other trailheads that veer off of the Great Allegheny.
The total path is 156 miles long, passing through Maryland, next to rivers, & abandoned railroad tunnels (which sounds like the scary part) that once connected to the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal.
Must-Visit Hikes in Pennsylvania
Prepare your summer holidays with hiking destinations like these in mind, to give yourself a break from the routine. There are routes for every explorer in Pennsylvania, whether you’re a skilled hiker or simply out seeking fresh air. Plan ahead in order to make the most of your adventure…
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