Loyalsock State Forest
Loyalsock State Forest is named for Loyalsock Creek, a scenic freestone stream that winds through the heart of its 114,552 acres.
Loyalsock State Forest includes portions of:
- Sullivan County
- Lycoming County
- Bradford County
The forest spans the northern tier’s “Endless Mountains” region and primarily consists of northern hardwoods forest type.
Loyalsock State 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 managed as “working forests” and provide a suite of uses and values to Pennsylvania citizens, while maintaining the forest’s wild character.
Our state forests are managed for:
- Pure water
- 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.
2023 Management Activities
View Loyalsock State Forest’s 2023 management activities (PDF) for upcoming projects and events to implement the State Forest Resource Management Plan.
Loyalsock State Forest Resource Management Plan
A district-level state forest management plan is written for each of the bureau’s 20 forest districts across the state.
Loyalsock State Forest staff hosted a
public meeting (PDF) and online survey about its draft management plan in 2018. Public comments and responses (PDF) to the plan are available to review.
Using public input and building on the statewide 2016 management plan, the Bureau of Forestry revised and completed a new
Loyalsock State Forest Resource Management Plan (PDF), setting district-level management priorities.
Visitor Use Monitoring Report
DCNR’s Bureau of Forestry uses surveys to gain insight into recreational use of state forests, which helps guide management of recreational resources.
Please read the Loyalsock State Forest Visitor Use Monitoring Report (PDF) to learn more.
Local state forest harvest schedules promote and maintain desired forest landscape conditions while providing a sustainable flow of forest products.
DCNR’s 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:
- Protection of a vernal pool
- Buffering a stream from timber harvesting
- Setting aside 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.
Dual Certified Forest
Pennsylvania’s 2.2-million-acre state forest system is one of the largest dual certified forests in North America. The forest is certified under Forest Stewardship Council™ and Sustainable Forestry Initiative© standards.
The FSC© is an independent organization supporting environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests.
SFI© certification focuses on protection of water quality, biodiversity, wildlife habitat, species at risk, and forests with exceptional conservation value.
Dual certification ensures that Pennsylvania’s state forests are managed to the highest third-party standards.