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Hiking at Blue Knob State Park

18 miles of trails

Wear appropriate foot wear when hiking at Blue Knob State Park.

Trails are closed for nighttime use.

Many trails at Blue Knob are steep. A hike down a trail means that a hike up is required. Well planned hiking trips utilize different trails to provide an extended hiking experience and avoids a steep return climb.

Chappells Field Trail

2.5 miles, inverted orange V blaze, easiest hiking

This multi-use trail is a gentle sloping loop trail with little gradient change. It is ideal for families and cross-country skiing.

This trail follows the back end of Chappells Field through wildlife management areas, crosses Blue Knob Park Road, travels to the bottom loop of the campground and returns through a forested section to the starting point.

Park at the Chappells Field Trailhead.

Crist Ridge Trail

1.9 miles, orange blaze, easiest hiking

This multi-use trail starts at an intersection of Chappells Field Trail and extends to below the pool. This is an easy downhill hike for the entire family.

To access the trail, park at the lowest intersection of Chappells Field Trail and Knob Road, or at the second curve above the pool.

Homestead Trail

1.8 miles, orange blaze, easiest hiking

A loop trail off the second major curve along Park Road to Willow Springs Picnic Area, this trail winds through old homestead sites in a rolling valley section of the park.

A wide, gentle trail with some uphill travel, this trail is suitable for the whole family. Good birding opportunities are in the old fields.

Park along Park Road at the second curve.

Mountain View Trail

5 miles, double red blaze, most difficult hiking

This multi-use trail is in a wilderness part of the park. It begins a short distance from the curve on Three Springs Trail.

The trail makes a short, 0.9-mile ‘Look Out’ loop before crossing the Three Springs Trail again. It then descends along Beaverdam Creek before extending along the eastern slope of the mountain to Willow Springs Picnic Area. The trail then proceeds north along an old waterline to Deep Hollow Run and climbs the mountain to the trailhead.

The ‘Look Out’ loop is suitable for the whole family, but the remainder of the trail is recommended only for adults in good hiking condition. Proper footgear (boots) is a must because terrain is steep and rugged.

Access points to different sections of the trail are limited.

This trail should not be used during inclement weather because fog is dense due to the higher elevation.

Park along the curve approaching the ski resort along Ski Access Road.

Rock ‘N’ Ridge Trail

2.8 miles, inverted blue T blaze, more difficult hiking

This multi-use trail starts at the picnic pavilion above the pool, then follows a homestead road weaving through the center of the park near a mountain brook.

The trail is a steady uphill climb until it peaks near the mountain slopes and returns along the high ground connecting the ridge top east of the pool complex.

This is a ridge and valley trail suitable for the whole family.

Park at Mowry Hollow Picnic Area.

Sawmill Trail

3 miles, yellow blaze, more difficult hiking 

This trail bisects the park and uses openings created by waterlines and service roads.

Beginning on Ickes Hill on SR 4031, this trail passes Willow Springs Picnic Area, Organized Group Cabin Camp, the campground and Chappells Field, then connects to the lower section of Rock ‘N’ Ridge Trail leading to the pool complex.

Park at Chappells Field Trailhead.

Three Springs Trail

2 miles, orange blaze, easiest hiking

This multi-use trail is a very wide, gentle mountain trail using service roads and waterlines.

It begins at the curve below the ski slope and extends along the eastern slope of the mountain to the Willow Springs Picnic Area.

Enjoy the mountain forest setting with views of the lowlands from about 2,000 feet.

Park at the curve approaching the ski resort along Ski Access Road.

Lost Turkey Trail

26 miles, red blaze, most difficult hiking

Beginning at the towers and ending at the Babcock State Forest Ranger Station on PA 56, this 26-mile trail is a favorite of backpackers, cross-country skiers, and day hikers.

This trail uses a combination of public and private lands.

The trail follows many of the narrow-gauge railroad beds from the logging activities of the 1930s. This trail covers a wide variety of terrain contained in the ridge and valley section of the park, including Blue Knob Mountain and the Allegheny Front.

Unnamed connecting trails are blazed in a double blue blaze.

This trail is not recommended for small children.

A separate topographical trail map is available for the entire Lost Turkey Trail and the Bureau of Forestry’s John P. Saylor Trail.

Overnight camping by backpackers is allowed only on forestry lands by permit. Overnight parking is at the Babcock Ranger Station or the Blue Knob State Park office.