Loyalsock Trail is a 23.7 mile lightly trafficked point-to-point trail located near Montoursville, PA that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Route 220 on the east side and Route 42 on the west..
Who writes the descriptions of these trails? Loyalsock is a 59.2 mile trail, point to point. There is a loop option that is 22.9 miles. I have done the entire loop and about 15-20 miles of the thru hike on top of that, spent 6 nights and 7 days exploring the trail. It's absolutely gorgeous. They have so many primitive campsite setups with awesome fire pits and seats made out of rocks or stones.
So many different terrains it's unbelievable. Waterfalls, rivers, ponds, mossy areas, piney areas! This hike will kick your ass and take your breath away. Probably one of the best, most challenging options in the entire tri-state area. I would have gone crazy this summer had I not found this hike, as I am from the Canadian Rockies, and really missed the satisfaction of conquering mountains, and solitude the forest offers.
Went hiking with my dog, great times and beautiful sights!
absolutely love loyalsock trail. even the loop trails are amazing. I still wanna do the whole 59 miles thru. so far just overnights or 2 nights all along the trail. love it though!
Me and my boyfriend and dog just finished the first half of this trail from the trailhead at Route 87 to Dry Run Road (around 30 miles so half). This trail is very difficult in many areas and has a lot A LOT of mild to difficult stream crossings and much elevation change in short distances. Even for regular backpackers like us we only accomplished 15 miles in the first day and we started at 9 am. I also want to clarify the we carried a backpacking GPS for mileage and the mile markers on the trail and in the Loyalsock Trail Guide are not accurate. We noticed this in the first 10 miles. It is disheartening and should be fixed. Having said that we will return and finish the other half soon. Very intense trail in central PA! Not for the weak willed!
Hiked this trail last year with a couple of buddies over a three day back-packing weekend in mid Feb after getting about 18” of fresh powder. We made the decision to do it with snow-shoes at the last minute, which was a great decision because it would’ve been impossible otherwise. Turns out we were going to be the only people out there that weekend, according to the ranger we checked in with before starting out. The goal was to do about 7-8 miles per day, which we which accomplished but it sure wasn’t easy. The trail goes up and down the mountain side almost continuously and gets pretty technical in some parts, which is no small feat with iced-globbed snow shoes and 50lbs on your back. There was a couple scenic vistas worthwhile to see. The hike altogether was brutal and we all were utterly exhausted. Will never to this again under those conditions, but a good strong hike for perhaps the spring and/or fall time.
It was beautiful. Had a lot of great views. A lot of up and downs and rock climbing also.
Hard trail lots of rain and snow
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Hiked this trail with our leadership group. The kids (14-18) faced struggles, and hardships along the trail but grew their comfort zones in doing so. They came out of it better people, as I did too. It's an intense trail and requires dedication. Hike it if you can!
This trail is not for the faint at heart. Thru hiked this trail in 3 1/12 days and it was intense. Due to injury, three of our original five hikers bailed and hiked out after day one. If you're hiking this trail from West to East, then get ready for a tough start. At the trailhead, you immediately go straight up for about a half mile, this is the most difficult part of the trail, but not by much. The entire trail continuously goes up and down on very difficult terrain. However, each day the trail gets easier to hike. Do not let that last comment make you lazy as the days progress, I got tired and lazy and rolled my ankle on our third day where we had to hike 19 miles, and then had to hike 13 miles the next day to finish, not awesome. Either way, be prepared mentally and physically! And don't forget your camera, because this area is absolutely beautiful and the most isolated trail I have hiked in PA. My idea of perfect!!
A little helpful info: LOTS of water on this trail, secluded but there are opportunities to hike out if needed, you will pass a bar at one point (sadly, it was closed when we passed), not a ton of campsites but there are plenty (the best ones are listed in the guide book)
Lastly, I HIGHLY recommend the guide book made by the Williamsport Alpine Club. It may seem a bit pricey but there is good reason for it, the guide is incredibly detailed and helpful.
One of my favorite places in PA. Need to do the whole thing sometime. Just did the area to the North and East of Worlds End for the third time.
great trail didnt get to hike the whole thing but will def be back to give it another go. very beautiful scenere.
love the trail when it runs along the rushing water, it was to cold to take a dip in but was very beautiful. very steep climbes, which was very exhausting but worth the trip.did run in to a couple people with there dogs other then that very peaceful.
This year I have hiked the western end from Sones Pound thru the Haystacks to the trail head and the Eastern end from the trail head to Smith's Knob and back to bear Run Road. A year and a half ago I hike the portion thru Kitchum Run through the Alpine vistas and back the High Knob Road. Only a couple more sections to go. lol
To date, I've done the eastern half (30 miles) of the Loyalsock Trail, and I must say it's rugged and unusually beautiful. Near the eastern terminus are the Haystacks which are a series of large pools in the Loyalsock Creek made of hard stone - really beautiful and great for a soak on a hot day. Around World's End SP, the trail dips into the gorge for a 700' descent and reascent which is challenging and almost rainforest like (LOTS of moss). The falls at Ketchum Run were awesome (Ladder Trail) with sheer and precarious looking cliff faces...they seemed like they could crumble at any moment! Split Rock on High Knob really gives an indication of the underlying geology of the area.
On my most recent section hike, I came off trail at High Knob Overlook via the Holtzauer Trail. I saw so many wondrous cliff faces and caves, that I'm determined to get back to the area to do more exploration. I took a lot away from this amazing adventure!
Almost there! At Sones pond on to haystacks... Been to several areas before, fav spot is Lee's fall in Ketchum Run. Usually easy to find water on the trail so you can pack light. Awesome trail! MST is next..