Agency Spotlight: Tiadaghton State Forest
Tiadaghton State Forest is comprised of 215,500 acres mostly in Lycoming County. Other tracts extend into Tioga, Sullivan, Potter, Clinton, and Union counties. Tiadaghton's forest features high-country flats bisected by clean, fast-moving mountain streams, including the legendary Pine Creek and Slate Run. It is one of eight state forests located in the PA Wilds region.
Tiadaghton (pronounced: ty-a-dot-un) was the name the Iroquois gave to Pine Creek, the largest tributary of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. The exact meaning of Tiadaghton is a mystery that may be locked forever in the folklore of the Iroquois Indians.
Most of the land for the Tiadaghton State Forest was purchased between 1900 and 1935 from lumber companies that had removed the timber and wanted to dispose of the cut-over land. The Civilian Conservation Corps had seven camps within the Tiadaghton State Forest during the 1930's. The corps constructed and improved the extensive road system and built foot trails and other facilities.
The Black Forest Trail is a 42 -mile hiking trail built by the Bureau of Forestry. It utilizes old railroad grades, logging trails and foot trails to traverse some of the most spectacular terrain in Pennsylvania. Portions of this trail follow foot paths originally constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the 1930's. A trail map and guide is available from the Tiadaghton Forest Fire Fighters Association. Contact the District office for details on how to obtain a copy.
The Pine Creek Rail Trail was developed by the Bureau of Forestry on the abandoned railroad grade that parallels Pine Creek. The trail will extend 62 miles form Jersey Shore in the Tiadaghton State Forest north to Wellsboro Junction in the Tioga State Forest. The trail is used primarily for bicycling, cross country skiing and walking.
Cross-country skiing has become a popular winter recreational activity. Over 30 miles of cross-country ski trails are marked and maintained. Maps are available from the Bureau of Forestry.
The Tiadaghton State Forest is a wonderful place to sleep under the stars! All facilities are primitive, and camping permits are required in most cases. Contact the district office for details. Certain fragile watersheds are closed to camping and additional restrictions apply in several popular camping areas. Camping permits are issued in advance by telephoning the district office or stopping by during business hours.
Hunting for white-tailed deer, wild turkey, ruffed grouse, and black bear is a popular use of the forest during designated seasons. Hunters travel to the Tiadaghton State Forest from all over the state to enjoy hunting their favorite quarry in the Tiadaghton’s vast woodlands. Hunting is permitted throughout the state forest except in safety zones around buildings and picnic areas. Contact the Pennsylvania Game Commission for details and licensing information.
Fishing and Boating
Great fishing for both cold water and warm water species is available in the Tiadaghton State Forest. Some of the larger streams include Pine Creek, Lycoming Creek, and Loyalsock Creek, all of which flow into the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, and support a great variety of fish. Mountain streams, too numerous to mention, offer challenging native brook trout fishing. Contact the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission for details and licensing information. Canoeing Pine Creek is a spring tradition for many, and a once in a lifetime thrill for others. Whether your interested in a three-day excursion or a two-hour easy paddle, any time spent on Pine Creek will be unforgettable. The water is best for canoeing in March, April, and May, but heavy rains may permit passage at other times of the year. Most of the creek is considered Class 1, and is easily navigated by experienced paddlers, however, there are more challenging Class 2 and 3 rapids in some areas.
Wildlife watching and scenic drives, especially during the fall foliage change, are the most popular sightseeing activities in the Tiadaghton State Forest. Over 260 miles of state forest roads, originally developed for forest fire protection, provide public access to state forestland for the varied recreational experiences available. There are many vistas throughout the forest that provide spectacular views of both public and private land.
Horses may be ridden on all state forest roads and trails except those otherwise posted.
Mountain bikes may be used on most roads and trails in the Tiadaghton State Forest. All trails are open to mountain biking except those designated as state forest hiking trails such as the Black Forest, Loyalsock, Mid-State, and Old Logger’s path hiking trails. The degree of difficulty on the trails varies considerably.
The Haneyville ATV Trail offers 17 miles of summer and winter all-terrain vehicle trails that are maintained by volunteers and the Bureau of Forestry. The trail is closed for several months during the spring fire season and again in the fall hunting season. ATVs must be registered with DCNR and comply with other regulations. Contact the district office for additional information.
The Tiadaghton State Forest offers approximately 290 miles of snow mobile trails, as well as over 50 miles of marked and maintained cross-country ski trails. Many additional miles of roads and trails are available for cross country skiing when snowfall is available.
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