August 21, 2023

The legend of the Sulphur Serpent

It’s no secret that the Pennsylvania Wilds is full of cryptids. In addition to Bigfoot sightings, there are the local ones: the Giwoggle of Clinton County, the Susquehanna Seal, the Potter Nondescript, and the Clarion What-Is-It. It’s always fun to hear about these mysterious monsters in the woods. There’s a legend of another one, this one in the I-80 Frontier landscape of the PA Wilds. Near Sugar Valley, in southern Clinton County, there’s an old legend of a sort of reptile monster that shows up when a comet is passing: The Sulphur Serpent.

May 26, 2023

A Titanic spot in the PA Wilds

Writer Lou Bernard introduces us to a historical hidden gem in the PA Wilds: a small brick building in Lock Haven that has ties to the doomed voyage of the Titanic and its captain.

March 29, 2023

Roadside markers in the Pennsylvania Wilds

If you’ve done any sort of traveling in Pennsylvania, you’ve definitely seen them: the roadside historic markers. Invariably dark blue with yellow lettering, these markers stand beside the roads in Pennsylvania to capture the stories and tell the history of specific locations. They are created and maintained by the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission in Harrisburg, and they’re found in every county.

March 8, 2023

Up to Hyner View

On a high peak in Chapman Township, you can see for miles up and down the Susquehanna River valley. At the top of the mountain, Hyner View State Park is 1,940 feet above sea level. It’s above Route 120, and if you want to see a lot of the Elk Country landscape all at once, this is the place to go.

February 21, 2023

Graham Acres

While it's not exactly a tourist attraction, the Lock Haven Hospital does have an interesting history behind it, a history that even connects with Hollywood movies. The Lock Haven Hospital sits at the top of a hill in the western portion of Lock Haven. Once upon a time, that hill was a horse farm. It was known as Graham Acres, and the land was donated to be used for a hospital.

December 19, 2022

As the year closes

At the beginning of the year, Lou Bernard wrote a piece about things he would like to do in the Pennsylvania Wilds called "In the coming year: A PA Wilds bucket list" – places he'd love to visit and thing he'd like to learn. Now, at the end of 2022, he reflects on how many of the those goals he was able to accomplish (like a trip to Cook Forest or learning about the communities in the PA Wilds), along with some things he wasn't able to do yet but wants to achieve in the upcoming year. Lou knows there's always next year, and he'll keep exploring the Pennsylvania Wilds.

December 7, 2022

A Dark Skies Christmas

As a history writer, Lou Bernard has a Christmas tradition: digging into old archives and writing about the holidays of the past. In Dark Skies Country, a hundred and forty-three years ago, there was an interesting one. Christmas in Potter County had some wild stuff happening back in 1879, and the Potter Enterprise reported on it all.

November 28, 2022

The Pine Creek Rail Trail

Lou Bernard accidentally discovered the Pine Creek Rail Trail for himself while biking. Once he realized what an amazing journey it was (even though he himself was only on it for a short time), Lou decided to do a little research about what makes the trail so special and all the things people can explore along its miles of scenic beauty.

November 15, 2022

A Trip to Tionesta

Although writer Lou Bernard never set out to go to Tionesta, he found that he quickly fell in love with the little community, which is the seat of Forest County. With its stolen courthouse, the gravestones next to its library, the Tionesta Market Village, a replica of the Statue of Liberty, and a rare lighthouse on the shores of the Allegheny River... well, Tionesta has plenty of unique stories in its history.

November 8, 2022

The Legend of the Gnats

In Clearfield County, in the I-80 Frontier, there’s an interesting legend that explains how the gnats came to exist. Lou Bernard shares the folklore story of how a young Native American warrior defeated a sorcerer and turned him into ash, which then became the gnats that we know (and despise) today.