Leonard Harrison and Colton Point
Brochure of Leonard Harrison and Colton Point State Parks (SP) in Pennsylvania. Published by Pennsylvania State Parks.
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The Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania Leonard Harrison and Colton Point state parks are on opposite sides of Pine Creek Gorge, also called the “Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania.” Many scenic vistas offer spectacular views into the 800-foot-deep, glacial floodwater-carved canyon. The scenery at these parks is superb in every season of the year and is especially stunning in late September through mid-October. The large abundance of Leonard Harrison State Park On the east rim of the canyon, the 585-acre Leonard Harrison State Park has modern facilities, a visitor center, and the most famous scenic views of the gorge. GPS DD: Lat. 41.698 Long. -77.45156 Directions To reach Leonard Harrison State Park on the eastern rim of the canyon, take PA 660 west from Wellsboro for ten miles. Recreational Opportunities CAMPING: flush toilets and hot showers The campground is open from the second Friday in April until the third Sunday in October. Rustic toilets, tables, fire rings, and a sanitary dump station are provided. Some sites have electricity. PICNICKING: Picnic tables (seven of which are covered), charcoal grills, restrooms, drinking water, and trash bins are available. Schloder Pavilion can be reserved for a fee. If unreserved, the pavilion is available on a first-come, first-served basis. HIKING: See reverse side. Visitor Center and Gift Shop The gift shop is open from late mid-April to late October as visitor center staffing allows. Call the park office for hours and seasonal changes. A video and educational displays interpret the area and its wildlife. Water, soda, and juice vending machines are available from late April to late October. All proceeds benefit Pennsylvania State Parks. History Leonard Harrison State Park honors Leonard Harrison (18501929) of Wellsboro. Mr. Harrison was a civic-minded businessman and banker who contributed his time, energy, and finances to the betterment of his home community. Leonard Harrison State Park originally consisted of 121 acres and was called “The Lookout.” Mr. Harrison owned and developed the area as a public picnic ground. He gave the area to the commonwealth in 1922. The park was further developed by the boys of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp S-155-PA Darling Run during the mid-1930s. A bronze monument to the CCC’s achievements is on the overlook. Additional lands were added to the park in the late 1940s. deciduous hardwood trees display beautiful autumn shades of yellow, orange, red, and purple. Pockets of evergreen trees provide a dash of green year round. Pine Creek Gorge begins just south of Ansonia, along US 6 and continues south for about 47 miles. At its deepest point, the gorge is 1,450 feet deep and nearly one mile wide. At Leonard Harrison and Colton Point state parks, the depth of the gorge is about 800 feet and these parks have the most spectacular scenic overlooks. Colton Point State Park On the west rim of the canyon, the 368-acre Colton Point State Park resonates with the rustic charm of the Civilian Conservation Corps era of the 1930s. The rugged overlooks offer great views of the gorge. GPS DD: Lat. 41.70824 Long. -77.4553 Directions From US 6 near Ansonia, follow Colton Road south for five miles. Recreational Opportunities CAMPING: rustic sites The campground is open from the second Friday in April until the third Sunday in October. Rustic toilets, picnic tables, and fire rings are provided. Campsites at Colton Point are not reservable but are available first-come, first-served. PICNICKING: Picnic tables are available for year-round use. There are also five reservable pavilions throughout the park. Three of the pavilions have fireplaces. ORGANIZED GROUP TENTING: Qualified adult or youth groups may rent one of the three, 30-person capacity areas, from the second Friday in April to the third Sunday in October, weather permitting. The camp is equipped with picnic tables. Advance reservations are required. This area is rustic in nature and so vehicles are prohibited in the camping area. SNOWMOBILING: Registered snowmobiles may use the trail network on state forest land daily after the close of the deer season in December. The park provides parking, picnic tables, and restrooms. ATVs are not considered snowmobiles. HIKING: See reverse side. History Colton Point was named in the late 1800s for Henry Colton, a lumberman who supervised harvesting trees in the area. Logs were floated down Pine Creek to sawmills in Williamsport. The park was established from state forest lands purchased in the early 1900s. Colton Point State Park was developed by the boys of Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp S-91-PA Watrous, from 1933 to 1936. The park opened to the public in 1936. The CCC’s contributions are still visible today through the five stone and timber pavilions in the park. In 1988, the CCC-built facilities were added to the National Register of Historic Places. Many recreational opportunities are available in the gorge. Some of these activities are regulated by the Bureau of State Parks or by the Bureau of Forestry, which have slightly different rules and regulations. Visitors can hike, mountain bike, ride horses, fish, birdwatch, hunt, camp, and seasonally whitewater boat. FORMATION OF THE GORGE Until about 20,000 years ago, Pine Creek flowed northeasterly. Then the Laurentide Continental Glacier, which covered most of northern North America, moved into the A Pennsylvania Recreational Guide for area, pushing rocks, soil, and other debris, which dammed Pine Creek, forming a lake near Ansonia. The abundant glacial meltwater eventually overflowed the debris dam, reversing the flow of Pine Creek to its current southerly flow. The meltwater swiftly carved a deep channel. Thousands of years of erosion by Pine Creek has continued to carve the spectacular Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania. HUMAN INFLUENCE ON THE GORGE American Indians used the Pine Creek Gorge as a major travel route. Pine Creek Trail follows the same general route as the original path. Just north of the park, near Ansonia, was a seasonal hunting camp called “Big Meadow.” The lumbering of the native white pine and later, the hemlock and assorted hardwoods, led to the settlement of the area. Each spring, logs were floated in huge rafts to mills in Williamsport. Lumber from this area helped to make Williamsport the lumber capital of the world in the 1880s. Hemlock bark was peeled and hauled to several local tanneries to turn hides into leather. By the 1900s, only a few small areas of native forest were untouched in all of Pennsylvania. Due to the mass deforestation, massive forest fires, and unregulated hunting and trapping, the wildlife populations declined greatly in the commonwealth. White-tailed deer, beaver, and elk were reintroduced to the state in the early 1900s. More recent additions to the canyon include the reintroduction of river otters in 1983 and fishers in the mid-1990s. Bald eagles, once an endangered species, began nesting in the gorge in the late 1980s. Prior to being a world-class multi-use trail, Pine Creek Trail was an active railroad. The Jersey Shore, Pine Creek and Buffalo Railway Company began in 1883 by carrying timber to the sawmills in Tiadaghton, Cammal, and Slate Run. The railroad also transported coal north to New York State and vast amounts of hemlock bark to several local tanneries for use in the leather industry. By 1896, the railroad Leonard Harrison and Colton Point State Parks Leonard Harrison was carrying seven million tons of freight and three passenger trains on daily runs between Wellsboro Junction and Williamsport. The railroad changed hands several times and was eventually taken over by Conrail. The last train passed through the canyon on October 7, 1988. Today, the rail line has taken on a new life as a part of the state’s extensive network of rail trails. In 1968, 12 miles of the canyon were designated a National Natural Landmark by the U. S. Department of the Interior. In 1993, the gorge became a State Park Natural Area, which will protect it in a natural state for future generations. In 1992, Pine Creek was designated a Pennsylvania Scenic River. pennsylvania WI LDS Colton Point Recreational Opportunities at Both Parks FISHING: Fishing is available to those visitors who wish to make the long, steep hike down to Pine Creek. Species include trout, smallmouth bass, and panfish. Along Turkey Path Trail is the trout stream Four-Mile Run. Nearby trout streams include Marsh Creek, Stoney Fork Creek, Asaph Run, and Straight Run. Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission regulations and laws apply. HUNTING AND FIREARMS: About 250 acres of Leonard Harrison and 100 acres of Colton Point are open to hunting, trapping, and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, turkey, rabbit, pheasant, and squirrel. Hunting is also available in adjacent Tioga State Forest. Hunting woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, is prohibited. Dog training is only permitted from the day following Labor Day through March 31 in designated hunting areas. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Pennsylvania Game Commission rules and regulations apply. Contact the park office for ADA accessible hunting information. Use extreme caution with firearms at all times. Other visitors use the park during hunting seasons. Firearms and archery equipment used for hunting may be uncased and ready for use only in authorized hunting areas during hunting seasons. In areas not open to hunting or during non-hunting seasons, firearms and archery equipment shall be kept in the owner’s vehicle or enclosed trailer. Exceptions include: law enforcement officers and individuals with a valid Pennsylvania License to Carry Firearms are authorized to carry a firearm concealed on their person while they are within a state park. For More Information Contact: Leonard Harrison State Park 4797 Route 660 Wellsboro, PA 16901-8970 570-724-3061 email: firstname.lastname@example.org CP GPS DD: Lat. 41.70824 Long. -77.4553 LH GPS DD: Lat. 41.698 Long. -77.45156 An Equal Opportunity Employer Information and Reservations Colton Point Environmental Education and Interpretation A seasonal environmental educator presents natural and cultural programs on wildlife, seasonal changes, glaciation, and other topics to visitors, organized groups, and school groups. Contact the park to schedule a group program. At Leonard Harrison State Park, the ADA accessible visitor center opens in mid-April and closes in mid-October. A short video highlights the formation, the impact of logging, and the restoration of the canyon. Wayside exhibits detail cultural and natural history topics. Along the overlook are wayside exhibits on natural history and the Civilian Conservation Corps. Reservations Make online reservations at www.visitPAparks.com or call toll-free 888-PA-PARKS, 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Saturday. Mt. laurel Nearby Attractions Information on nearby attractions is available from: Visit Potter Tioga, 888-TIOGA-28. http://visitpotterrioga.com Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce, 570-724-1926. www.wellsboropa.com Colton Point Horseback trail rides, covered wagon rides, mountain biking, road bicycling, seasonal whitewater rafting, canoeing, kayaking, and airplane rides are available from private sources in the area. The 159,466-acre Tioga State Forest provides timber products, wildlife habitat, and recreation. 570-724-2868 Explore Pennsylvania Wilds Pennsylvania Wilds is two million acres of public lands for hiking, biking, fishing, boating, hunting, and exploration in northcentral Pennsylvania. Highlights of the area are elk watching, scenic PA 6, Pine Creek Gorge (Pa. Grand Canyon), the darkest skies in the east at Cherry Springs State Park, and hundreds of miles of backpacking trails, bike paths, and trout fishing streams. www.pawilds.com Access for People with Disabilities This symbol indicates facilities and activities that are Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible for people with disabilities. This publication text is available in alternative formats. If you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, please contact the park you plan to visit. In an Emergency Call 911 and contact a park employee. Directions to the nearest hospital are posted on bulletin boards and at the Leonard Harrison State Park office. There is no phone service at Colton Point State Park. The closest pay phone to Colton Point is at the entrance to Colton Road, off of US 6. NEAREST HOSPITAL Soldiers and Sailors Hospital 32-36 Central Avenue Wellsboro, PA 16901 570-723-7764 Make online reservations at: www.visitPAparks.com or call toll-free 888-PA-PARKS (888-727-2757), 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Saturday. www.visitPAparks.com visitPAparks Printed on recycled paper 2018 Protect and Preserve Our Parks Please make your visit safe and enjoyable. Obey all posted rules and regulations and respect fellow visitors and the resources of the park. • Be prepared and bring the proper equipment. Natural areas may possess hazards. Your personal safety and that of your family are your responsibility. • Alcoholic beverages are prohibited. • Please camp only in designated areas and try to minimize your impact on the campsite. • Firewood Advisory: Firewood may contain non-native insects and plant diseases. Bringing firewood into the park from other areas may accidentally spread pest insects and diseases that threaten park resources and the health of our forests. Use local firewood. Do not take wood home and do not leave firewood. Burn It! • Prevent forest fires by having a fire in proper facilities and properly disposing of hot coals. Do not leave a fire unattended. • Because uncontrolled pets may chase wildlife or frighten visitors, pets must be physically controlled, attended at all times, and on a leash, caged, or crated. Electronic fences and leashes are prohibited. • Do your part to keep wildlife wild! Enjoy wildlife from a safe distance and do not feed or approach wild animals. To Leetonia, 18 Mi. 1/4 400 To Parking at Painter Leetonia Road Right 50 Colton 17 1800 Wa y POINT COLTON Road On e ow Ho ll 0 0 12 50 0 180 1700 16 50 00 400 15 17 50 To Blackwell ( Tioga State Forest ) 140 0 1300 1150 Ru n 16 00 1350 50 12 1200 1/4 MILE We st Ru n #5 #4 800 FEET 1/8 ile rm Fo u #3 #2 #1 17 00 1250 Trail) PINE CREEK GORGE NATURAL AREA 1750 Waterfall nc h Bra PARK STATE ar Be 50 Private Land Pa th West 1100 General Fall Foliage Colors of Trees Red: red maple, red oak, black cherry, sumac, sassafras Yellow/Orange: sugar maple, hickories, sycamore, basswood, aspen, tulip poplar, birches, chestnut oak, serviceberry, black walnut Brown: white oak, black oak, beech 00 50 17 17 50 Deadman il Tra 0 Leonard Harrison and Colton Point state parks offer outstanding opportunities for fall leaf viewing. Shortening daylight, cool nights and warm days, wind, and adequate moisture through the preceding seasons factor in the brilliance of the fall foliage. These factors also determine when the leaves will change in the gorge. Droughts, wind, and cold temperatures can cause leaves to drop early in the fall. The timing of the fall foliage varies from year to year. However, the first three weeks in October provide a spectrum of fall foliage. The overlooks at Leonard Harrison offer the best view of the entire gorge. The drive up Colton Road to Colton Point State Park and the four overlooks offer spectacular fall foliage viewing opportunities. Fall Foliage The 62-mile Pine Creek Trail is a multi-use trail for hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing. Located at the bottom of the Pine Creek Gorge, one mile of this trail is in Leonard Harrison State Park. While hikers may access this trail via the Turkey Path from Leonard Harrison, cyclists and other users must use one of many other accesses, the closest being Darling Run, nine miles north of the park. Trail users can view dramatic rock outcrops, waterfalls, and wildlife like eagle, osprey, coyote, deer, wild turkey, heron, river otter, black bear, and many others. Diverse plant life, scattered old-growth timber, historic pine and spruce plantations, and several foundations from the Civilian Conservation Corps era can be found along the trail. Pine Creek Trail Turkey Path: (Colton Point side) 3 miles round trip, most difficult hiking This narrow trail descends along steep hillsides 1.5 miles to the floor of the Canyon and is best-suited for experienced hikers. The highlight is a 70-foot cascading waterfall less than 0.5 mile down. It is a down and back trail. There is no bridge across Pine Creek at the bottom. Rim Trail: 1 mile, easiest hiking Not to be confused with the West Rim Trail, Rim Trail follows the perimeter of the ‘point’ and links the many park overlooks together into a rewarding hike that also includes a section of old growth timber. Trails at Colton Point Overlook Trail: 0.6 mile, more difficult hiking This loop passes Otter View, a vista looking south. While short, sections are still very steep. The suggested direction of travel is clockwise. Turkey Path Trail: (Leonard Harrison side) 2 miles round trip, most difficult hiking This difficult trail descends one mile to the bottom of Pine Creek Gorge. It is a down and back trail. There is no bridge across Pine Creek at the bottom. The top half of the trail descends through a series of switchbacks to a view of Little Four-Mile Run at 0.5 miles, then on a short distance to the first waterfall. The trail continues downward along narrow switchbacks and wooden decking, bridges, and steps. The lowest parts of the trail are along a series of waterfalls. The trail ends at the Pine Creek Trail. Trails at Leonard Harrison CAUTION: Hikers on Turkey Path should be in good physical condition, wear sturdy boots, and use caution due to slippery/wet conditions and steep trail sections. Tell us about your hike at: www.explorepatrails.com st We 0 d n 17 Ri m Trail 185 Rim 18 1800 00 • Always wear sturdy boots. Wearing sneakers, sandals, water shoes, and “street shoes” can lead to serious accidents. • Be prepared. Have proper clothing and equipment (compass, map, matches, water, food, flashlight, etc.) available in case of an emergency. This is especially important when traveling remote trails or when hiking during non-summer seasons. • Give yourself plenty of time for your hike. The weather changes quickly in the park. Plan to be off the trails well before dark. • Let someone know where you are hiking and when you should return. • Stay on the trails. Leaving the trail causes damage to unique natural resources, promotes erosion, and can be dangerous. Stay behind the railings and fences. Avoid the temptation to get on rock overhangs for a better view. • Don’t take shortcuts from one trail section to another. Taking shortcuts down switchbacks is dangerous and causes trail damage. 1350 50 18 13 18 00 1300 e Pin 1 0 15 Private Land 1350 TIOGA STATE FOREST 0 er Wat falls 00 12 00 N Turkey 1200 11 TIOGA COUNTY il Tra 00 LEONARD HARRISON & COLTON POINT STATE PARKS 1550 Otter View To Blackwell Access, 11.5 Mi. 50 17 th Pa 1600 170 Stowell 1650 1 00 0 170 00 19 rbo 1900 d i cap 1500 0 70 15 0 an 50 18 Ba 1600 0 170 PARK STATE 180 0 HARRISON 1550 Little 19 50 175 Ru n 1750 0 6 1800 1750 1700 1650 0 160 Run 1650 1700 N R 660 362 (East Rim) AIRPORT PINE CREEK TRAIL PARKING Ansonia LEONARD HARRISON d oa 1750 T421 Sanitary Dump Station 660 1800 20 00 To Ti 660 1900 6 287 HOSPITAL 287 17 50 18 00 To Wellsboro, 10 Mi. T4 21 Wellsboro PINE CREEK TRAIL PARKING 1700 1850 State Park Hunting CONTOURS ARE ON 50 FT. INTERVALS State Park No Hunting Unpaved Road Joint-use Road Auto/Snowmobile Parking Unpaved Parking Paved Parking ADA Accessible Rev. 9/28/18 Thumptown TIOGA COUNTY VISITOR BUREAU STOP SIGN Creek 660 Organized Group Tenting Camping Picnic Pavilion Picnicking Playground Environmental Interpretive Center Water Rustic Restrooms Cross-country Skiing Recommended Paved Trail Showerhouses/Restrooms Modern Restrooms Hiking Trail Pine Creek Trail: Hiking, Biking West Rim Trail Scenic View To Darling Run Access, 2 Mi. First Aid Public Phone 1700 1750 LEGEND Blue Symbols Mean ADA Accessible Park Office 175 TAVERN 1800 1600 1800 0 170 0 1600 1450 1650 n lto Co 1500 1850 COLTON POINT Rexford 1700 50 1700 Four-mile 1900 1400 1300 1200 1850 17 (West Rim) 1350 1250 1650 1600 1650 1750 0 180 Roc k 50 18 LEONARD 1150 Trail ur CREEK GORGE NATURAL AREA ( Tioga State Forest ) To Ansonia (US 6), 5 Mi. PINE 00 The trails lead to many beautiful vistas and waterfalls, but traverse rugged terrain, pass close to many steep cliffs, and may have slippery surfaces. Trails are subject to seasonal closure due to snow and ice, usually from December through April. Closures are posted on the park website. The following guidelines will help ensure a safe and enjoyable hiking experience. 1600 16 Hiking 1850 00 12 115 1100 1350 1250 0 12 5 Creek Pin e 13 Trail Creek 00 14 Roa to Col 00 18 1 ord 160 1 65 0 Rexf 1500 50 00 Rim h nc Bra 15 e fug (Re 700 16 ay eW 50 14 400 1 Trail leton 50 On 1650 00 0 il Tra 11 180 1 0 70 1500 Road Cree k 0 Creek 165 Pine 00 Rim Pine 1450 1500 1100 17 1150 00 1200 18 1250 0 1500 175 0 0 150 155 To G a 15 0 180 1100 0 Overlook 110 Turk ey 50 0 Trail 17 125 50 00 50 17 19 16 1500 1150 0 Pin e H 0 k s 1950 Cr ee Ro ck 190 Pin e il Tra 185 Tra il Barbour 1800 00 am To Trail 19 D nd rt Rim aH og mo am W illi am sp o West 50 18 sfield To Man 1250 1450