Hiked the full loop today. It took us about 5 1/2 -6 hours which included sitting & enjoying the views at the Pulpit and The Pinnacle. We also wondered off the path to climb rocks to heights that would offer us a different perspective of the landscape and views. I strongly recommend packing your lunch and making a day of this beautiful site.
We parked at the reservoir parking area and walked up the road all the way through the observatory and to pulpit rock. We took in the views and took photos there and then headed north on the AT to the pinnacle. The views were beautiful and we found and walked through the cave below. It was much larger that i thought. We ate snacks here and then headed north on the AT again to the blue blazed trail on the left at the open field. We went down past the reservoir to the parking area. 8.3 miles for the route we took.
Sarah M. on The Pinnacle Trail Loop
Hiked Pulpit Trail to Pinnacle Trail to Furnace Creek Trail. Originally planned to do it in reverse but the No Trespassing signs at the reservoir deterred me (apparently you can ignore those). Glad I did the route I did though. Hike up to Pulpit was moderately step near the end with the final stretch climbing up rocks. Hike to Pinnacle was great. Rocky trail but level with a few spots of boulder hopping. Great views through the trees of the valley. Pinnacle vista was a lot more massive than I imagined. Even though it was packed, you can find a spot to take in the view. Hike down was basically an easy dirt road and with nothing to break it up, it was pretty boring for the most part. The parking lot was pretty full when I arrived at 10am and cars were parked halfway down the drive when I left so it's a real popular trail. I was able to hike alone for the most part though. The vistas are where the crowds congregated.
A great Pennsylvania section of the AT. Two beautiful views and hike by a creek past the reservoir. Typical PA ridgeline "shark teeth" rock, with a mix of smooth trail. It lost a star with me because of it being such a popular place the weekends are a bad time to go. Just to crowded to enjoy the views.
Great hike, I've done this particular site about 5 or 6 times. Lots of people there this time, which takes away from it a bit in my opinion. Everybody we came across was friendly though, and appeared to following the "Leave No Trace" principle. Definitely recommended. The view is phenomenal.
It's rocky,so wear proper hiking footwear.
Very popular site,get there early if you want a good parking spot.
Very pet friendly,almost every one I saw had a pet.
Not too steep of a climb,but it will still get your heart rate pumping.
Great view at the top,sat and had lunch there. I would totally do this trail again.
Once you're at the top,you can either trace back to the parking lot or continue all the way(about 3 more miles(give or take)) to the pinnacle trail. Then you take the blue trail back down to the parking lot.
Great quick hike. We started late on a Friday afternoon and stayed out overnight and was back early the next morning. Trail was a fairly rocky but not too hard. Both pulpit rock and the pinnacle was completely fogged in when we were there. Definitely going to do it again