(WTAJ) — Fall is here, and there’s no better place to take in all its beauty than right here in Central PA. We’re giving you a look at some of the best areas in our region to see great fall foliage.
We begin in our northern most counties, in Elk and Cameron Counties.
Elk State Forest
It features over 200,000 acres and over 30 hiking trails, and once boasted a large number of elks romaing its fields. DCNR spokesperson Ryan Reed says this week is a great week to see their fall foliage peak.
Elk Country Visitors Center
Elk Country Visitors Center is a place where plenty of elk and trees can be found. It is elk breeding season so there is a chance you can not only see some of these elk, but see the trees turning their colors as well.
“You can go there and spend time on viewing platforms just watching the Elk, and take in all of the beautiful fall sites at the same time,” said Ryan Reed, Natural Resource Program Specialist, Communications Specialist for the Bureau of Forestry at the DCNR.
Moving south towards State College, several areas pop up:
Bald Eagle State Park
It has 5,900 acres of land surrounded by forests, Bald Eagle Mountain, wetlands and a 1,700 acre lake.
Poe Valley State Park
Has just 620 acres but also surrounded by Bald Eagle State Park.
Rothrock State Forest
It comprises of 96,975 acres of land, featuring plenty of hiking and mountain biking trails for all to enjoy.
Tuscarora State Forest
It also boasts over 96,000 acres, with some of its land reaching into Huntingdon County, featuring an abundance of different types of trees with narrow valleys and rocky ridges.
Ryan says by simply driving down route 26 towards route 322 in Centre County will allow you to see the fall foliage of quite a few of these forests.
“It’s a really long, scenic state for state forest drive, that will take you basically to the South end of Bald Eagle State forest,” Reed added.
And of course, we would remiss to not mention Raystown Lake.
Located out in Huntingdon County, it is an 8,300 acre lake surrounded by forestry and is the largest lake that is entirely in Pennsylvania. It is surrounded by 21,000 acres of forested mountain slopes that gives breathtaking views in the fall.
Out west, features several areas in Somerset County that also have fall foliage, including:
Forbes State Park
It totals 59,000 acres.
Known as the tallest point in Pennsylvania, also lies in Somerset County, sits 3,213 feet above sea level, and features an observation tower.
Finally, in the Altoona area, some great places to visit fall foliage is none other than:
It is an historic landmark that once saw 250 different trains come through on a given day at its peak.
Canoe Creek State Park
Features 961 acres of land, surrounded by an 155 acre lake, that offers mirgating birds and a host of wildlife.
Ryan says PA residents are lucky to have such a variety of fall foliage areas across the entire state.
“When it comes to our fall color, I really believe that the citizens of Pennsylvania shouldn’t be inclined to take it for granted, we have one of the longest, and most varied fall foliage seasons anywhere in the world.”
You can check out the DCNR’s Fall Foliage reports by visiting their website.