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​​Michaux State Forest

Michaux State Forest encompasses more than 85,500 acres in the South Mountain area of:

  • Cumberland County
  • Franklin County
  • Adams County

Considered Pennsylvania's "cradle of forestry," Michaux is the site of the first forestry school, Mont Alto. The forest is named for the French botanist, Andre Michaux, who discovered and named many plants in the 18th century.

Most of the state forest lands of the Michaux district are located on the metavolcanic and quartzite rocks of South Mountain at the northern terminus of the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. Forests of oak species dominate the slopes, including:

  • Chestnut oak
  • Scarlet oak
  • Northern-red oak
  • Black oak
  • White oak

along with:

  • Red maple
  • Black birch
  • Blackgum
  • Hickory
  • Pine
  • Tuliptree

Michaux State Forest forest Management

DCNR's Bureau of Forestry manages our state forests for their long-term health and productivity while conserving native wild plants. These forests are “working forests” and provide a whole suite of uses and values to Pennsylvania citizens, all while maintaining the forest’s wild character.

Our state forests are managed for:

  • Pure water
  • Recreation
  • Scenic beauty
  • Plant and animal habitat
  • Sustainable timber and natural gas
  • Many other uses and values

The management of our state forests is guided by the State Forest Resource Management Plan.

2017 Management Activities

View Michaux State Forest's 2017 management activities (PDF) for upcoming projects and events to implement the State Forest Resource Management Plan.

Michaux Trail Assessment

The Michaux Trail Assessment (PDF) is a feasibility and market study that identifies priority trails that the district is hoping to construct. The study was undertaken to support the goals of the Bureau of Forestry in managing current and future trail use.

Harvest Schedule

Local state forest harvest schedules promote and maintain desired forest landscape conditions while providing a sustainable flow of forest products.

Ecosystem Management

The Bureau of Forestry has adopted “ecosystem management” as its principal strategy for managing state forests. This approach seeks to conserve the natural patterns and processes of the forest while advancing long-term sustainability.

Ecosystem management promotes the conservation of plant and animal communities and the landscapes and habitats that support them. It also accounts for needs and values of people and communities.

This results in a holistic, integrated approach to managing forest resources. 

A Working Forest

As you travel throughout the state forest, you’ll see examples of our forests “at work.” Some of these management practices are more noticeable than others, such as:

  • Active timber harvests
  • Deer exclosure fences
  • Natural gas drilling sites
  • Prescribed fires
  • Gypsy moth spraying

Others are more subtle, such as the:

  • Protection of a vernal pool
  • Buffering of a stream from timber harvesting
  • Setting aside of a special area to conserve its wild character or protect a rare plant community

Each of these management practices and activities play a vital role in the management and conservation of our state forest system.

Certified “Well Managed”

Pennsylvania’s 2.2-million-acre state forest system is one the largest certified forests in North America. The forest is certified (FSC-C017154) by under the Forest Stewardship Council™ standards. The FSC® is an independent organization supporting environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world's forests.

contact Michaux State Forest

Michaux District Office
10099 Lincoln Way East
Fayetteville, PA 17222
717-352-2211

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Michaux State Forest