Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s premier hiking trails, ranked

Scranton Wilkes-Barre’s Premier Hiking Trails, Ranked

Photo courtesy of Canva

By Good Info News Wire

February 20, 2024

From the serenity of lakeside loops to the awe-inspiring feat of conquering waterfalls, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area has a hiking trail with your name on it.

If you’ve been itching to lace up those hiking boots and embark on an adventure that doesn’t involve finding a parking spot at Wegmans, you’re in luck. From the serenity of lakeside loops to the awe-inspiring feat of conquering waterfalls, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area has a trail with your name on it — and possibly a slug or two.

So, grab your water bottle and trail mix, and let’s dive into the crème de la crème of local hikes — all within a stone’s throw, or a reasonable drive, from the Electric City and the Diamond City. After all, nothing says “NEPA pride” like enjoying one of these top-notch hikes and then rewarding yourself with a well-earned tray of pizza in Old Forge.

7. D&H Rail-Trail

Location: Simpson Viaduct, Carbondale to New York State border

Length: 38 miles total

Difficulty: Easy to moderate

The D&H Rail-Trail is a historic rail-trail that offers an extended, flat journey through the changing landscapes of Northeastern Pennsylvania. Perfect for long bike rides or leisurely walks, it connects communities while showcasing the splendid natural and industrial heritage of the region. Users appreciate the trail’s accessibility and the opportunity for both fitness and tranquility.

6. Frances Slocum State Park Trails

Location: Frances Slocum State Park, Luzerne County

Length: Varies, up to 4.8 miles round trip for the loop around the lake

Difficulty: Easy to moderate

Frances Slocum State Park is a haven for those seeking diverse natural landscapes. Its trails wind through forests and around a horseshoe-shaped lake. Hikers love the park for its well-maintained paths that cater to all skill levels, providing a satisfying outdoor excursion at any pace.

5. Nay Aug Gorge and Falls Trails

Location: Nay Aug Park, Scranton

Length: Varies, primary trails around the gorge and falls are less than a mile

Difficulty: Easy

Nay Aug Gorge offers an urban hiking experience with instant rewards: Stunning waterfall views, a picturesque gorge, and the unique David Wenzel Treehouse. It’s popular among families for its accessibility and range of amenities within the park, making it more than just a hiking spot — it’s a complete outdoor adventure.

4. Pinchot Trail

Location: Lackawanna State Forest, near Thornhurst

Length: 23+ miles

Difficulty: Moderate

The Pinchot Trail System provides a taste of backcountry within a state forest setting. With opportunities for extended or short hikes on various side trails, it appeals to both day hikers and those seeking a more challenging experience. The mixture of rhododendron forests, observation decks, and diverse ecosystems keeps the scenery fresh and inviting.

3. Bear Creek Preserve Trails

Location: Bear Creek Preserve, Bear Creek Village

Length: 9+ miles

Difficulty: Moderate

Bear Creek Preserve enchants with its variety of trails that snake through an extensive natural landscape. Hikers often choose the Yellow and Green Loops for a 3-mile trek filled with sights including rocky outcrops and lush forests. The preserve is well-loved for being a protected area where one can truly immerse in nature’s tranquility.

2. Lackawanna River Heritage Trail

Location: Pittston to Union Dale

Length: 70+ miles

Difficulty: Easy

A gem within the urban landscape, the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail is a multi-purpose pathway that offers lush riverside views combined with historical insights. Its accessibility throughout NEPA makes it a favored spot for riders and walkers alike — a trail that truly represents the intersection of nature, culture, and Scranton’s history.

1. Ricketts Glen State Park Falls Trail

Location: Ricketts Glen State Park, near Red Rock

Length: 7.2 miles for the full loop

Difficulty: Strenuous

Topping the list is the famed Falls Trail at Ricketts Glen State Park. Known for its rigorous path that rewards hikers with the majestic sights of 21 waterfalls, it’s a bucket-list hike for many. Though it demands stamina and sure footing, the spectacular cascades and the raw beauty of the Glens Natural Area prove irresistible to those who seek the pinnacle of hiking experiences in Pennsylvania.

This article first appeared on Good Info News Wire and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s premier hiking trails, rankedScranton/Wilkes-Barre’s premier hiking trails, ranked

This story was generated in part by AI and edited by The Keystone staff.




Local News

Related Stories
Share This