Outdoor Recreation

January 18, 2024

National Wild and Scenic Rivers of the PA Wilds: Allegheny and Clarion

The Pennsylvania Wilds region has some of the best flat water paddling and fishing in the United States! When anglers and paddlers research the PA Wilds, they come across these words: “two Wild and Scenic Rivers.” They often ask where those two rivers are, why the words “wild” and “scenic” are capitalized, and why only two rivers out of the many PA Wilds waterways are called out as such. The term comes from the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, a registry that was created with the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act of 1968. The Allegheny River and the Clarion River within the PA Wilds are on the Wild and Scenic Rivers registry, and for good reason.

January 16, 2024

BIRD LORE: Winter birding in Lycoming and Clinton Counties

What is there to do on cold winter days in January and February? If you live in or are visiting Clinton or Lycoming Counties, how about a drive along Old River Road in South Avis, or a road trip to Cogan House Township to look for Snow Buntings and Lapland Longspurs in open farm fields! Or look for these songbirds wherever you see agricultural fields spread with manure. So what attracts these songbirds, as well as large flocks of Horned Larks, to these fields? In a word, seeds.

January 10, 2024

New Year’s Resolutions that the PA Wilds can help you accomplish

A New Year’s Resolution is all about hope for the upcoming year. Whatever you’re trying to accomplish in 2024, there are places in the PA Wilds that can help you achieve it.

January 8, 2024

A short First Day Hike in Lock Haven

When we were first married, my wife and I used to traditionally take First Day hikes on January first, every year. Then we had a kid. We adopted my son, Paul Matthew, in 2014. I love being a parent, but I have to say that there is nothing like a baby to keep you in the house. They’re like an ankle monitor that you have to feed. However, Paul is nine now. And I enjoy doing things with him, so this year I brought up the idea of getting back into the First Day Hikes.

January 5, 2024

A First Day Hike at Parker Dam State Park

Just ten hours after watching the Times Square ball drop celebration on TV and ringing in the new year for 2024, I found myself at Parker Dam State Park to celebrate the start of a fresh year with their annual First Day Hike. What is a First Day Hike? They’re held on the first day of the new year at lots of Pennsylvania state parks. These free hikes are guided by staff and volunteers from the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), and they’re typically anywhere from 1 to 3.5 miles long.

January 3, 2024

Stargazing Sanctuary: Exploring the Dark Sky at Cherry Springs State Park

Nestled amidst the picturesque Dark Skies landscape of the Pennsylvania Wilds sits a haven for stargazers and nature enthusiasts — the awe-inspiring Cherry Springs State Park. To understand the magic of the Commonwealth’s first Dark Sky Park, Christian Alexandersen spoke with Park Manager Ben Stone for the season premiere of the Hemlocks to Hellbenders podcast. The episode – “Cherry Springs State Park – Spend a night in the stars”- premiered January 3, 2024. 

December 28, 2023

Meet Your New Year’s Resolution on the West Branch Susquehanna River

As the New Year approaches, so too do the hopes, inspirations, and goals of our upcoming resolutions. Do you have yours yet? Let the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership (SGP) help! Here are some resolution ideas that you can meet with us in 2024 on and along the Susquehanna River, part of which includes the West Branch Susquehanna River in the PA Wilds region.

December 26, 2023

Start your 2024 on the right foot with a First Day Hike

Go take a hike! No, really. You can start the new year on the right foot (literally) with guided hikes at many state parks throughout Pennsylvania, including several in the Pennsylvania Wilds.

December 21, 2023

Snowmobile season begins in the Allegheny National Forest

Snowmobile season is officially open in the Allegheny National Forest, says the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service. The season started at 8:00 a.m. on Friday, December 15, 2023, and snowmobile trails will remain open until 12:00 p.m. on March 31, 2024. Sufficient snowfall is needed for the trails to be usable.

December 19, 2023

Rain can’t spoil the fun: A leaf-peeping overnighter to Wellsboro

As the leaves were changing in the Pine Creek Valley in the PA Wilds, Helen Kotala and her group of biking friends were heading north. The plan was to park at Hyner Run State Park and ride up to Wellsboro, stay in a hotel, then ride back the next day. It was rainy, but that didn't hold them back. The route spanned Sproul, Tioga, and Tiadaghton State Forests, about 145 miles in total. It included some new-to-Helena territory linking the Cross Fork area and the Pine Creek Gorge area, filling in another gap in her north-central PA map.