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Top 4 hiking trails in PA

Pictured above is me trying to not fall into the streaming river below and ruin my high-quality leather jacket. Carly O'Neill/Snapper

Carly O’Neill
Features Editor

As a lover of the outdoors and exploration, I like to spend the majority of my free time hiking around popular destinations in Pennsylvania. Throughout the years, I’ve hiked and camped at some beautiful state parks and local hiking trails that I encourage you to check out, to appease your adventurous side during this fall season.  

1.) The Pinnacle Overlook: Only 30 minutes away from Millersville University, located in Holtwood, PA, the Pinnacle is a popular overlook where many come for afternoon picnics and an exquisite view. This is a great place to check out if you’re looking for some short, but intense hiking trails or if you just need an artsy background for a fun photoshoot with friends. 

The view of the Pinnacle Overlook during the summer. Carly O’Neill/Snapper

2.) Tucquan Glen Nature Preserve: This preserve can be found on the way to the Pinnacle Overlook, since it is also located in Holtwood, and only 25 minutes away from the University. This peaceful trail follows a winding river that eventually leads to a former fallen down tree, now used as a bridge, for those who can never pass up the opportunity to balance their way across a log. So the next time you find yourself stressed during finals week or need a change of scenery, I recommend checking out this nearby preserve.

A babbling creek flows through Tucquan Glen. Carly O’Neill/Snapper

For those interested in more hiking throughout the greater area of Pennsylvania, there are two places I would highly recommend either around the fall or summer season. 

3.) World’s End State Park: This state park, located in Forksville, PA, has some breathtaking sceneries, consisting of 20 miles of trails that range from more difficult to most difficult. While the park is named after one of it’s trails, I didn’t find it to have as great of a view as the Canyon Vista Trail. This 4-mile loop is worth the view from the top of the mountain, and for those who are just in it for the pictures, there is a parking lot at the top to save your leg muscles. The High Rock Trail is what I would recommend to people looking for an intense “rock-climbing” experience with another rewarding view if you make it up the wall of boulders and rocks.   

The view from the overlook at Canyon Vista Trail. Carly O’Neill/Snapper

4.) Ricketts Glen State Park: If you like waterfalls of all shapes and sizes, this is the park for you. Located in Benton, PA, Falls Trail is the most popular hiking destination, making up 7.2 miles of stunning overlooks, layers of rocks stacked on one another, creating a wall-like structure, and you guessed it; LOTS of waterfalls. I recommend starting at the top of the mountain where you’ll progressively descend down, before meeting the tallest waterfall in the park, marking your halfway point. Ganoga Falls stands 94-feet tall and makes for a picture perfect background around this time of year. This trail is considered “most difficult,” since it does take about four hours long to complete, and after that midway point, you do have to climb back up the loop to make it to your car. Overall, it’s worth it if you bring good company and at least two bottles of water.

Pictured above is Ganoga Falls, the tallest waterfall found along Falls Trail. Carly O’Neill/Snapper