Cook Forest

Trail Guide

brochure Cook Forest - Trail Guide

Trail guide for Cook Forest State Park in Pennsylvania. Published by Pennsylvania State Parks.

Most of the trail is located on or near the river bank in a mix of pine, hemlock, rhododendron, and mountain laurel. However, the trail does ascend to the ridge tops in two locations where visitors can enjoy open hardwood forests of oak, cherry, and maple. Cook Forest State Park contains 7.5 miles of the trail; a portion of SR 899 is used to connect the trail to Clear Creek State Park. From SR 899 it is 2.5 miles to the Clear Creek State Park Campground. There are three trailhead parking lots. The Gateway Lodge parking lot is available on the western end of the trail. A small parking lot on SR 899 is marked by an information kiosk. The third parking area is on the eastern end of the trail in the Clear Creek State Park Campground. Hiking Only Trails Baker Trail/North Country National Scenic Trail: Two long-distance trails, the North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT) and the Baker Trail, pass through Cook Forest State Park, following the same 12-mile stretch through the Forest Cathedral, passing Seneca Point, and meandering by the Clarion River. The 140-mile Baker Trail (blazed yellow) runs from Freeport, PA, through the Allegheny National Forest. The NCT (blazed blue) is America’s longest national scenic trail at 4,600 miles, running from New York to North Dakota. Several named park trails follow along the NCT/Baker Trail route and are listed below. Forest Cathedral Trails: Hiking Only Black Bear Trail: 1.1 miles, easiest This flat loop trail begins and ends at the Sawmill Center for the Arts. Look for black bear claw marks on trees. The Forest Cathedral Natural Area is a registered National Natural Landmark. Numbers below correspond to the map on the reverse side. Browns Run Trail: 2.0 miles, more difficult This trail parallels Browns Run from Toms Run Road to Forest Road. Due to its low usage, it is a wonderful trail for wilderness hiking, hunting, and birding, particularly for the flute-like songster thrushes. 1. Joyce Kilmer Trail: 1.1 miles, more difficult This trail runs from Cemetery Road to the Indian Trail. Note the rock formations nestled among large hemlock and white pine, some of which span three to four feet. Camp Trail: 2.0 miles, most difficult The most travelled section of this steep trail links the Ridge Campground to Breezemont Drive near the Log Cabin Environmental Learning Classroom (ELC). Pay particular attention at trail intersections as this trail splits near the campground. Cook Trail: 2.0 miles, more difficult This lightly used loop trail winds through a magnificent stand of old growth timber. Keep watch for tall white pines, large hemlocks, oaks, black gums, relict American chestnut snags from the early 1920s, and a 1930s dynamite shack built by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The trail can be accessed in three locations: across from River Cabin 12, at the River Picnic Area, and via a short spur trail on Cemetery Road. Corduroy Trail: 1.2 miles, more difficult This trail connects the Ridge Campground and the Liggett Trail along Toms Run. This pleasant hike crosses over Breezemont Drive, passing large American beech and Eastern hemlock. Pay attention at intersections as this trail connects with the Camp Trail. Deer Meadow Trail: 1.5 miles, more difficult This trail unites the Browns Run Trail with the multi-use Hefren Run Trail. Sections of this trail go through old growth oak hemlock forest and prime wildlife areas. 2. Rhododendron Trail: 1.2 miles, more difficult A favorite hike for many, this trail joins Indian Cabins 6 and 7 to Forest Drive via the Forest Cathedral. Ancient hemlock and white pine are common along its length. Paved Trail: 0.2 mile, easiest This paved, ADA-accessible trail loop winds through a mature hardwood forest. It can be reached via the water tower access road near the entrance of the Sawmill Center for the Arts. Ridge Trail: 0.7 mile, most difficult This steep trail connects the Ridge Campground near Site 32 to Forest Road by Shelter 1. Large oaks and black cherry trees are found near this path. Several black cherries reach three feet across and 140 feet high, some of the tallest known in the entire Eastern U.S. River Trail: 1.2 miles, most difficult This steep segment runs along the NCT/Baker Trail by the Clarion River from the fire tower to Fire Tower Road. This is one of the most beautiful hikes in early summer when the mountain laurel and rhododendron bloom. To continue on the NCT/Baker Trail, stay straight along the Clarion River; the River Trail works its way back uphill to connect to Fire Tower Road. Seneca Trail: 0.9 mile, most difficult This trail climbs from PA 36 to the junction with the Deer Park Trail, where a left turn will continue to the Fire TowerSeneca Point Area. It offers an excellent view of the Clarion River, passes through old growth forest and a section of 1976 tornado-downed logs. The greatest concentration of tall hemlocks in the Northeastern U.S. can be found here. The tallest known Eastern hemlock in the Northeastern United States, at 145 feet high, is located here. Tobecco Trail: 10 miles, more difficult This connecting trail between Cook Forest and Clear Creek state parks runs along the Wild and Scenic Clarion River from State Route 899 to the Gateway Lodge on PA 36. View from the Fire Tower Deer Park Trail: 1.1 miles, more difficult This trail segment connects PA 36 and the Seneca Trail, also linking with the Mohawk Trail. Hikers pass through the heart of the 1976 tornado damaged area. Portions of the classic movie, “The Unconquered”, were filmed near a rock outcrop here. Hemlock Trail: 0.3 mile, more difficult This short trail connector joins the Longfellow Trail near Forest Road with the Deer Park Trail at PA 36. One of the finest old growth hemlock forests in the Eastern U.S. is located along this trail. Some hemlocks surpass 140 feet tall; many are more than 300 years old! Liggett Trail: 1.5 miles, easiest This trail begins at Breezemont Road across from the Log Cabin ELC and travels a portion of the NCT/Baker Trail along Toms Run, terminating on Toms Run Rd. The trail passes through a wonderful stand of hemlocks, some of which is an old growth forested wetland. This trail is a good place to listen for the elusive winter wren. Turning right onto Toms Run Road brings you back to the Log Cabin ELC. Mohawk Trail: 1.4 miles, more difficult This trail runs from the PA 36/Forest Road intersection near the Inn at Cook Forest, and ends at the exit of Fire Tower Road. This trail winds through magnificent old growth hemlock forest along the hilltop within the Fire Tower Road loop and the steep hillside overlooking the Clarion River. On this trail, you will walk amongst some of the tallest, largest, and oldest hemlocks found in the park. Many hemlock, white oak, and chestnut oak surpass 300 years old here. 3. Longfellow Trail: 1.2 miles, more difficult The most well known trail in the park runs through the finest stand of old growth white pine forest in the northeastern United States. The trail starts beside the Log Cabin ELC and terminates on Forest Road. Along the way, hike past the Memorial Fountain and past the tallest known tree north of the Great Smoky Mountains, a white pine 185 feet tall! A Trail Information Guide for Multi-Use Trails Hiking, Biking and Horseback Riding Cook Forest State Park Multi-use trails are open to hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding as designated. Bridle Trail: 1.1 miles, easiest This trail starts 0.8 miles from the beginning of Forest Drive. This fairly flat, multi-use trail weaves hikers and equestrian users through a 1930s Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) red pine plantation and then terminates at the Old Logging Road within the Forest Cathedral. Some select Eastern hemlock, white oak, and American beech surpass 200 years old. Continue onto the Old Logging Road to bring you back to Forest Drive. Hiking and horseback riding only. Hefren Run Trail: 1.1 miles, more difficult This multi-use trail connects Toms Run Road with Forest Road. This serene trail crosses Hefren Run Valley along evidence of old bracket dams used to move logs downstream in the 1800s. Hiking, biking, and horseback riding are permitted. Old Logging Road Trail: 0.6 mile, easiest This flat trail proceeds between Forest Drive and the Joyce Kilmer Trail. Watch for red and white pine orchards planted by the CCC from 1933-1937. Hiking and horseback riding only. Equestrian Trail: 1.5 miles, easiest This trail starts 0.2 miles from the beginning of Forest Drive. This fairly flat, multi-use trail weaves hikers and equestrian users through a 1930s CCC red pine plantation and then loops back onto Forest Drive. White-tailed deer are a common sight here. Keep your eyes open for hawks that like to hunt between the rows of pines. Hiking and horseback riding only. photo © Anthony E. Cook 4. Toms Run Trail: 0.8 mile, easiest This flat trail connects the wooden swinging bridge to the Log Cabin ELC through the picturesque Toms Run Valley. Keep a lookout for remnants of bracket dams once used to move logs downstream during the 1800s logging boom. 5. Birch Trail: 0.9 mile, easiest This trail passes through a lovely stand of birch trees between the Children’s Fishing Pond and Shelter 1. The swinging bridge links this trail with the Rhododendron Trail. 6. Indian Trail: 1.0 mile, most difficult This steep trail progresses from the north side of the Children’s Fishing Pond, deep into the core of the Forest Cathedral before joining the Longfellow Trail. Near the pond, observe the incredible stand of second growth Eastern white pine, logged in the 1800s. As the trail levels off, look for the transition from second growth to old growth forest. 7. Red Eft Trail: 0.2 mile, most difficult This short, steep, spur trail connects the Longfellow Trail with the Toms Run Trail, making a variety of loops possible. This section traverses an old growth forested wetland through a series of bridges and steps. 8. Ancient Forest Trail: 0.3 mile, more difficult This trail bisects the Longfellow Trail through the heart of the Forest Cathedral, creating various loop options. Gaze above to the highest concentration of tall, old growth white pines in the Northeastern United States. Plan Ahead and Prepare • Prevent accidents by knowing your abilities, limitations, and the area in which you will be riding, hiking, or biking. • Travel in a small group for less impact on the environment. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces • Hike and ride only on designated trails. • Avoid damage to vegetation. • Camping is only permitted for hikers and only at the NCT shelters on a first come, first served basis. For more information, contact: Cook Forest State Park 113 River Road Cooksburg, PA 16217 814-744-8407 email: cookforestsp@pa.gov www.visitPAparks.com 2016 Printed on recycled paper • Additional overnight facilities are available at Ridge Campground. Dispose of Waste Properly • Pack It In, Pack It Out! • Due to the remote nature of the area, please bury solid human waste in cat holes six to eight inches deep and at least 200 feet from water sources and trails. • Leave the area cleaner than when you found it. Leave What You Find • Brush off boots, tires, horse hooves, and hair before leaving an area in order to prevent the spread of non-native species. • Leave rocks, plants, and other natural objects as you find them. Minimize Campfire Impacts • Fires are permitted where designated in overnight areas. • Extinguish all fires before leaving the area; fires are prohibited when the wildfire danger is high. Respect Wildlife • Do not approach or feed wild animals; observe from a distance. • Store food and trash securely. Be Considerate of Other Visitors • Let nature’s sounds prevail. • At parking areas and trailheads, collect manure, hay, and garbage to take with you when you leave. • Be courteous when using trails; yield to other hikers and riders. 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. Call 911 and contact a park employee. Directions to the nearest hospital are posted on bulletin boards and at the park office. Nearest Hospital Clarion Hospital 1 Hospital Drive Clarion, PA 16214 814-226-9500 16 00 Ro ad y ek Cr e Map le Road B 1600 154 0 20 00 15 40 0 150 12 8 20 0 13 0 CLEAR CREEK STATE PARK ec 14 1440 80 14 00 1320 1360 1400 1440 1480 1280 60 co 20 15 Tra il 899 1560 1600 1640 1680 16 00 16 1600 Baker Trail Road Multi-use Trail: Hiking, Horseback Riding Clarion River Water Trail Multi-use Trail: Hiking, Horseback Riding, Mountain Biking Cathe rs Road Brid ge 1480 1440 1400 1360 13 20 TRAIL INFORMATION Hiking Trail Run 0 1360 1400 1420 1480 1520 1560 1600 CLARION COUNT Y JEFFERSON COUNT Y STATE GAME LANDS 283 36 Non-motorized Boat Launch To Sigel, 2.7 Mi. Bicycling Cross-country Skiing Paved Trail North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT) Cathers Run Iron Road ON Lick y Ro ad 1480 1460 14 142040 1400 15 20 15 R VE RI N IO AR CL 128 0 1320 1480 1440 1400 1360 River 124 0 12 00 Road River Riv er Ro a d 0 14 4 80 14 12 12 00 40 0 1520 ½ 0 ½ 1 2 KILOMETERS 1½ 1400 0 0 1460 1340 80 15 Creek e Mapl R oa d 1520 80 14 1440 1400 il Tra 160 2 15 Ceme ter 0 60 80 15 40 160 Tr He 152 00 16 M o haw k T r. ca Tr. Se ne 15 ro c is Bo Du To ml oc k Road Cemeter y l ai He m l 1580 156 0 kw ay Fish er St r R o at t ad 20 15 80 40 14 14 15 n Ru T CLARION COUNT Y FOREST COUNT Y . le Mi ol C o a Rd un . tr y Tra Riv il er n Rd v il 16 00 Tra il Ru n fr e n He Hef ren 1560 15 Run Browns To B To T Jac 1600 1560 152 0 80 00 16 Nor th Coun try Trail k’s 16 00 CLARION COUNT Y FOREST COUNT Y 15 60 16 00 City , PA 62 1600 Toms Trail / North Co unt ry Browns Trai 1440 Run l 14 To Oi l 1560 Run Roa d 1520 Run 0 80 Tom s 152 14 1600 1560 ad Ro 0 128 320 1 360 1400 1 1400 0 140 00 156 13 00 0 12 40 0 20 00 12 0 4 12 128 15 20 1320 1360 0 140 0 4 14 80 14 River R 1320 136 RIVE Cook Forest Fire Tower co bec To 0 140 TY Y UN NT CO OU ST N C RE FO ERSO il FF Tra JE o cc be To ION 0 140 0 14 40 148 0 152 0 0 00 1200 RIVER 40 12 6 13 CLAR 0 1480 144 1400360 0 1 132 0 1281240 CLARI 80 12 16 el 0 Tr. 1480 0 Gr av 0 152 1480 144 0 14 00 13 60 13 20 12 15 n Tr. 60 15 12 Ru s Tr. 4 80 12 00 14 To b 0 1240 1280 1320 1360 1400 160 60 k Coo 0 12 40 12 80 13 20 0 11 CONTOURS ARE ON 20 FT. INTERVALS Rd. 156 20 15 80 14440 1 400 1 0 136 20 13 80 12 40 12 1200 20 12 eze Dr. mon t 1260 1240 nwoo d Gree 60 a Bre . Rd 80 Ro Roa d 0 To Cemetery Road 14 0 6 11 00 12 r. 0 130 1600 120 13 n Ru a 1500 Private Land 1600 13 an m ol 1 1400 Riv er Run Run Road 0 132 0 L Trail Tra Ba Hol lo w Ha gg er t Drive r green 40 15 20 15 0 0 15 80 14 60 14 40 14 00 14 80 13 60 13 40 13 20 13 00 13 0 8 12 0 6 12 40 12 20 12 00 12 1540 156 u 0 60 480 1500 0 144 14 1 0 152 00 142 The Inn at Cook Forest 00 1600 120 Upp er 0 6 5 80 14 0 Co Trai l Joyce Kilmer Trail Rhododendron Trail Longfellow Trail Toms Run Trail Birch Trail Indian Trail Red Eft Trail Ancient Forest Trail Indian 0 3 20 340 136 1 13 1 Ev e 1500 140 0 130 1200 ad Ro 158 C n Colema 20 R Road 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 60 2 00 th / Nor Road 15 an Gi ord 1 an 12 River r. nry He R oad 1240 1200 1160 Dr. FOREST CATHEDRAL TRAILS 14 40 140 0 d Cook T 0 132 1280 0 124 1200 er R iv I V R ON RG H ill EDR A L C ATH AREA Private Land 1 Swinging Bridge 13 l Trai er Tow 00 16 utm Tro em 60 k Coo ARI SBU 1 60 520 148 14 1 0 40 40 15 60 40 14 0 140 6 ¼ MILE 0 15 st ire Road CL E 14 40 15 ¼ KILOMETER 20 15 L Fore 00 14 Run 0 L ch 00 Road RA 00 16 80 15 0 156 TU 60 13 40 13 20 13 00 13 0 128 0 12640 12 20 12 00 12 Tra il Ru n 0 1560 152 Troutman 160 RA 00 14 80 14 of 14 Logging NA n Ru 0 130 0 0 n ma ole Rd. llow Ho ry 00 15 20 15 40 60 15 0 8 15 ai Tr Old ST RE 00 14 0 130 s Tom e dg Ri 140 150 Run ’s ck Ja 1600 60 15 le FO US 219 gway, Ri ol u Tro n ut 120 00 40 12 0 2 36 0 12 AT Gravel Lick PA Fish & Boat Commission Canoe Launch 124 To Fisher, 2.6 Mi. Irwins To Trail Logging ED K COO Cemetery Rd . ER Private Land 0 1/8 1/8 3 1560 128 Rev. 2/3 /16 K ST n r 80 12 20 13 60 CREE Private Land 13 0 156 1 0 20 1600 Ru l ai p oo 1400 1440 80 14 20 15 CLEAR Trail der kbin Fin 20 15 80 1600 1520 T 1320 00 00 1400 1520 1560 r ke Ba Thompson Eddy Canoe Camping 1160 1200 1240 F 1480 1520 OR s er 1200 0 116 1200 1160 12 15 1 14 480 60 4 Park 0 128 T ES th Val le y r 3 36 D e er 14 899 80 12 1320 60 13 0 124 Ca the 00 00 ENLARGEMENT ive 15 1600 N CT ne La 0 1480 1440 1440 1360 1320 1280 1240 Bea Road TH EA 0 e tre de 140 Run 1400 1400 1360 Valley Bea of the 128 No 0 rth l Co u n tr y Tra i Dr 16 1200 16 1560 1 1 0 0 126 124 80 12 l ai 00 0 120 1280 1320 1360 1400 1440 00 Ro ad Forest 116 1200 T 1560 Riv er Tr ail / N CT 0 20 1300 13 15 Private Land 14 l/ Trai Rd. 00 14 140 S ha GRAVEL LICK 1520 1480 rs Seneca Point HEMLOCK ISLAN D 0 134 F Cole man Run See Enlargement 36 116 n tso Wa To Highland Shelter, approx. 2.0 Mi. dle Bri Old CA AR k Par Tow er 1480 1240 1200 0 0 ad r Dee Rd. 1520 l Trai h Co u n tr y / N or t l i a 1320 B a k e r Tr 1280 144 148 2 6 7 5 0 150 0 148 0 146 0 144 0 142 0 140 80 13 1360 C Drive Indian rail e Fir 0 156 l Trai haw k 19 1600 Ro T Roa d 0 20 80 40 1200 1560 0 36 13 12 12 0 40 1 1520480 144 1 1 Lic k Drive t To Kittanning, US 422 S1 ,U ey 1240 er ow 00 Gra vel ua Drive ST t Fores k oc r. T Fi r e Mo 36 n aw s ut unx To P Summerville 28 20 RE n il i Pisc ata q B ro ok No. 1 FO Tr ge Rid Parking Unpaved 14 M 949 15 st Fore Ru p Parking Paved 36 To Clarion and US 322, 10.6 Mi. I-80, 12.7 Mi. Sco Tr a Parking ADA Accessible To Leeper and PA 66, 3.0 Mi. No. 1 0 C am One-way Road 80 20 6 15 Unpaved Road 14 15 il Tra 28 Exit 81 d Log Cabin Environmental Learning Classroom s To m CONTOURS ARE ON 40 FT. INTERVALS 60 Gate Ca mp 1280 1240 em Exit 78 80 3 8 nt 80 12 20 13 60 13 00 0 14 144 Clear Creek State Forest Children’s Fishing Pond Picnic Pavilion Tr. 15 Picnic Area st Co r Tr. roy du Ice Skating re Bea r T r. mont D eze r. Bre Forestry—State Park Recreational Rules and Regulations Apply Sledding ty Tr. Cordu roy Natural Area Hunting hl e h 4 0 L RA T U 1400 State Park Hunting B et 3 Bre eze Dr. mon t Richardsville Exit 73 Br id Drive l Memorial Fountain Sigel 36 322 Log Cabin Environmental Learning Classroom 156 NA Historic Site: The Inn at Cook Forest Run Paved Loop Black ad Ro Post O ce un d Fo State Park No Hunting R Scenic Vista rg 949 JEFFERSON 949 Lakeview Corsica 66 ew 36 d Roa er 20 80 14 Restrooms oa Co Sanitary Dump Station Sawmill Center for the Arts Ru n s m To Public Phone Amphitheater Toms Organized Group Tenting Old Growth Timber Area a t ri es ea E q u ail h Tr 15 80 Nort h Trail / Contact Station/Phone Log Cabin Environmental Learning Classroom d n 12 Liggett Drive Campground 60 40 14 400 1 60 13 60 13 00 14 20 Map le Valley Dr. Blue Symbols Mean ADA Accessible sb u t res Fo 15 13 0 0 Cabins Roa Trail n 40 ELK Clear Creek F is h e r R d . Fisher Exit 70 Mechanicsville To N Trail 0 Ru 60 20 15 15 0 160 14 80 152 156 Park O ce er ian u Eq 14 Strattanville Exit 64 80 68 m ri o Lakeview Rd. le vil an n Ir o g e d B ri D r. 2 No. 2 Belltown ton ng ari l C d oo nw ee Gr erc 0 136 s Dr e Littl Cla 322 Exit 62 r est Run fren Exit 60 M 79; 140 Tom ple Ma He r th rion Cla 66 To I Fulmer Wetland Treatment System ive No ty 40 60 le O i l Ci 14 152 15 Rd. Sh i p p env i l 1520 0 00 COOK FOREST Forest est 4 Deer Meadow ad Ro 00 0 899 g ksbur Coo CLARION 208 60 00 14 144 1480 1480 Run Run er Print 0 36 Scotch Hill 15 16 Run Toomey 16 152 Leeper 66 Road 0 66 Ma 6 rie n Lucinda Forest Toms 156 208 157 , To Franklin 1440 80 60 14 15 00 20 15 16 Ros es Redcly e G r a ve l L i ck R d. Ru n To K ane , US ad Ro s un sR m To Rd. Ro ad Ch ap el Vowinckel 36 FOREST id To R el Newmansville F o re s t Chap , s ta ne io 62 US r 15 160 st re Fo 60 REDCLYFFE 0 Guitonville Greenw ood r ea le 00 16 Road Run vil 0 160 00 Fo 00 16 16 Run 1560 00 Pen SWAMP NATURAL AREA 14 1440 1480 1520 1560 0 160 r 1600 1640 60 0 164 To Leeper and PA 36, 2.3 Mi. 40 15 0 160 nt 16 Bear Co u th Nor / il Tra r ke 00 16 1600 il 899 60 15 0 2 15 0 8 14 ve Dri Creek e 40 14 McClosky Road ive Dr cer Len Mapl NORTH PINE GROVE Road Drive Len cer 80 80 0 14 152 t Fores 66 y 20 14 N To PA 66, 3.8 Mi. Marienville, 5.0 Mi. CLEAR CREEK STATE FOREST 15 0 160 1360 1320 1280 1240 1200 1 To Maple Creek Shelter, approx. 0.6 Mi. Moha wk COOK FOREST STATE PARK To Marienville, 8.0 Mi. 0 60 thers Run Ca 200 1 ½ 0 ½ 1 1½ MILES

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