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Best Hiking Trails in Pennsylvania – USA

Overview

Pennsylvania, the Keystone State,  is a fairly large state in northeastern US, with the Allegheny Mountains running through it, as well as over 200 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Many of the popular areas for hiking include: Delaware Water Gap, Lehigh Gorge, Ohiopyle State Park, Ricketts Glen State Park, Leonard Harrison State Park and parts of the Appalachian Trail. The best months for hiking in Pennsylvania are May to October. Read on for more information on where and when to hike in Pennsylvania. 

Capital: Harrisburg

When To Hike in Pennsylvania – USA?

May – October: Driest and warmest period, particularly in summer months
April; November
December – March: Cold, rain/snow

Climate: Humid continental – warm/hot summers and cold, snowy winters. 

 

NWS Forecast Office State College, PA

Accessibility of Hiking

Easy: Well-marked trails with good maps and guidebooks, and many resources available for hiking trip planning.

Transportation required: Car

Where to stay in Pennsylvania for hiking:

  • Jim Thorpe
  • Tannersville
  • Stroudsburg
  • Delaware Water Gap

Top Places to Hike in Pennsylvania – USA

The Allegheny Mountains (part of the Appalachian Mountains) run diagonally through the east central part of the state. The Pocono Mountains are a small range in the northeast part of the Allegheny Mountains. These are all low mountain areas, with not a lot of elevation gain. In Pennsylvania there are many State Game Lands which are used for management of habitat and lawful hunting and trapping. Many of these lands have hiking trails. There are about 230 miles of the Appalachian Trail that go through Pennsylvania. Highest Mountain: Mount Davis (979 m) in the Allegheny Mountains.

Filter out hiking places of Pennsylvania – USA by month

Click on the red map pointers to see more info.

Lehigh Gorge State Park

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Forbes State Forest

Ohiopyle State Park

Tuscarora State Forest

Rothrock State Forest

Ricketts Glen State Park

Leonard Harrison State Park

Pennsylvania – USA's Long Distance Trails

Pennsylvania – USA's Walking & Hiking Resources

Pennsylvania Hiking Books: 

  • Hiking Pennsylvania: A Guide to the State’s Greatest Hikes, by John L. Young, 2022, Falcon Guides
  • 50 Hikes in Pennsylvania, by Matthew Cathcart, 2021, Countryman Press
  • Explorer’s Guide 50 Hikes in Eastern Pennsylvania: From the Mason-Dixon Line to the Poconos and North Mountain, 5th Edition, by Tom Thwaites, 2012,  Countryman Press
  • Hiking the Endless Mountains: Exploring the Wilderness of Northeastern Pennsylvania, by Jeff Mitchell, 2010, Stackpole Books
  • Hiking the Poconos: A Guide to the Area’s Best Hiking Adventures, by John L. Young, 2009, Falcon Guides

 

Pennsylvania Hiking Associations/Clubs: – there are many clubs

 

Best Hiking Trails in Pennsylvania:

You can find more details on hiking these trails from hiking guidebooks, official park websites, trail maps/apps, other websites, and tourist offices:

  • Mount Minsi – Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Ricketts Glen Falls Loop – Ricketts Glen State Park
  • Glen Onoko Falls and Lehigh Gorge Overlook Trail – Lehigh Gorge State Park
  • Hawk Mountain Loop – Hawk Mountain Sanctuary
  • Thousand Steps Trail
  • Mt Tammany – Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Buttermilk Falls – Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail
  • Turkey Path Trail – Leonard Harrison State Park

Easy Hiking Trails in Pennsylvania:

  • Pulpit Rock and Pinnacle Loop – Appalachian Trail
  • Sunset Rocks Trail – Pine Grove Furnace State Park

 

Pennsylvania Hiking Websites:

 

Pennsylvania Weather Website:

 

Pennsylvania Official Tourism Site:  

 

Pennsylvania Hiking Apps: 

 

Pennsylvania Hiking Maps: 

What Else To Do

  • Waterfall hikes; there are a quite a few here
  • Allegheny National Forest – many hikes here but don’t necessarily meet mountain hiking criteria
  • Pennsylvania Dutch country
  • Liberty Bell

Other Important Points

  • The Appalachian Trail goes through game lands which are reserved for hunting so fall is not the best time to go through these areas