wild and natural areas
Pennsylvania’s state forest system includes dozens of special wild and natural areas set aside to protect unique or unusual biologic, geologic, scenic and historical features or to showcase outstanding examples of the state’s major forest communities. Natural areas are “managed” by nature and direct human intervention is limited. They provide places for scenic observation, protect special plant and animal communities and conserve outstanding examples of natural beauty. Wild areas are generally extensive tracts managed to protect the forest’s wild character and to provide backcountry recreational opportunities.
Marion Brooks Natural Area
This natural area is located adjacent to the Quehanna Highway at the edge of the Quehanna Wild Area. Marion Brooks Natural Area contains 975 acres, a portion of which is an almost pure stand of white birch. This area will be left to the forces of nature, free from human intervention.
Quehanna Wild Area
Quehanna Wild Area, is set aside to maintain the undeveloped character of the forest environment. This 50,000-acre tract was originally state forest land that was leased to the Curtiss Wright Corporation for jet engine and nuclear research in 1955. It was returned to the Commonwealth in 1966. The Quehanna Wild Area is jointly administered by Moshannon and Elk state forest districts. Snowmobiling, vehicular camping, and off-road vehicle use are prohibited to protect the wild character of the area.