Balanced Rock Viewing Area

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Trough Creek State Park

Balanced Rock Viewing Area is a 0.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Todd, Pennsylvania that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 0.5 miles Elevation Gain: 91 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

wheelchair friendly

kid friendly

stroller friendly



nature trips


bird watching





wild flowers



8 days ago

Beautiful and easy walk. The bridges are fun and the waterfalls are great for pictures. No steep incline but some steps are present. The balancing rock is cool too.

5 months ago

10 months ago

This is definitely an easy hike and great for kids to start there hiking adventures. You get to see the waterfall and the balanced rock. Walking across the suspension bridge is pretty neat the kids definitely enjoyed it.

11 months ago

very nice trail although not quite as easy as some reviews made me think with their references to toddlers and small children. there are alot of steps, some more stable than others. still it was a lovely walk and I strongly recommend you continue down the trail past the boulder until you get to the creek. it's a very nice spot to relax by the running water or dip your toes in. we were there in early June and saw only one other family on the way back.

Wed Aug 29 2018

Excellent trail for a quick walk. Beautiful views of rock formations, water, and small coves. Easy hike for kids (my 4.5 y/o loved it). keep going past balancing rock and end up at a nice spot in the river with a slow whirl pool. great views

Tue Jul 10 2018

What a neat geological attraction! I enjoyed the beauty of the CCC stone stairs, which I think add a lot to the scenic beauty of this trail-especially next to rainbow falls.

Sun Jun 24 2018

Short hike .. kid friendly. Beautiful scenic route and the balanced rock outlook is breathtaking.

Fri Jun 22 2018

It was a rainy day so the rock helped us stay dry during a downpour. One trail sign was broken, so we had to guess which way to go. The other trails in that area were more fun.

Sun Mar 11 2018

Such a nice little hike, many other trails in the area to make a longer more challenging hike.. Balanced Rock viewing area was well worth seeing

Sat Nov 04 2017

Such a fun little hike. And what’s nice is that if you want a longer hike, there are several longer trails close by that attach to it. Highly recommended .

Sat Sep 23 2017

It was surprisingly very short, but an easy little hike. Falls didn't have too much water this time of year but it was beautiful none the less! Also, it's pretty close to some beautiful places near Raystown Lake.

Tue Aug 15 2017

This was a very nice hike. There are multiple trails that you can hike on with some very nice views along the way. I would say all the trails range from easy to moderate. A very nice place for hiking.

Tue Aug 15 2017

This is a perfect trail to take toddlers and young hikers on. Short with a lot of different sites and experiences-a suspension bridge, a waterfall, balanced rock, a few little bridges over the creek, and a rock beach where you can get in and swim around. The kids loved it and were able to walk the whole way. they never got bored because there was something new around every corner.

Mon Jul 31 2017

It was a short trail and very easy hike! (Almost too easy) We started at the suspension bridge, made our way past rainbow falls, and then ended up at balanced rock. There was a decent amount of people there. It made it hard to take pictures without other people in it.

Sun Jul 09 2017

I have hiked this many times. This is a nice and easy hike.

Sun Mar 12 2017

nice place to visit. not difficult at all. great scenery.

Sun Feb 05 2017

I haven't the slightest as to why this is labeled hard. Honestly it is a simple series of trails coming together in a beautiful area. This is a perfect place to take the family or friends. It's usually heavily trafficked and if you connect the trails you get under ten miles and most lead back to balance rock so you won't really get lost.

Wed Sep 21 2016

Great trails. Elevation changes, rock formations, suspension bridge, overlooks, and other features that make the hike interesting. Close to Raystown Lake.

Sun Sep 04 2016

Great trail! The trail is short but you can connect to other trails to make the hike longer. it's definitely busy and I can see why. There's a suspension bridge in the beginning... certainly an experience and then stone stairs up to the balancing rock. Some of the trial is narrow and high up.. caution recommended.

Wed Jun 01 2016

I have hiked this trail my whole life. the begining is very easy over the bridge and to the falls after that it turns into steps up to balanced rock. the entire way is beautiful but very heavily trafficked. if you want solitude try boulder trail. it connects to 2 or 3 other trails in the park. the map at the rangers station is very helpful. my mother and father actually got married on the bridge at rainbow falls. :)

Wed Apr 06 2016

Interesting nature feature.

Sun Nov 01 2015

Beautiful and relaxing

Mon Sep 21 2015

According to the map of the park, there are 11 named hiking trails. I started at the car park at the beginning of the Copperas Rock Trail which will take you up to the Rhododendron Trail (on the map) but called the ledges trail according to the sign. At the end of this trail you can head over to the Balanced rock (see photo) and then down to the suspension bridge (another photo). Crossing the bridge puts you onto the Boulder trail which leads to the Laurel Run Trail which will loop you back to your car. The entire route is about 4 miles. You can drive further into the park for additional trails. Trails are not well marked so highly recommend you get the map for the park.

Mon Jul 20 2015

Really enjoyed the Rainbow Falls and Balancing Rock, very cool rock formations. Saw the most amazing blue warbler ever! Downside, we stayed at Lake Raystown Resort, and were warned to either bring our firearm or a big stick along on our hike, because copperheads have been seen. Big sticks were plentiful, but then we were a little edgy on the hike, not only about the snakes but wondering if other hikers were packing. But didn't see either and it was in the middle of July!

Mon Sep 01 2014

I hiked a loop through the park that's described in "50 Hikes in Central Pennsylvania", about 7 mi. that took in most of the well known features of the park. Trail maintenance and blazing are spotty, as mentioned in other reviews. There are some nice trails here along with interesting history. The view from Brumbaugh trail is obscured by leaves in the summer.

Mon Aug 19 2013

This is the crown jewel of Trough Creek Park. It has everything! Well, a lot of sights at least.

Mon Aug 19 2013

This is now my favorite park! The trails are beautiful. (Most of them) The park is beautiful. I really want to come back but it is 300 miles from home so we will see.

scenic driving
Sun Aug 18 2013

This is the real deal! Real country roads and real beautiful scenery.

scenic driving
Sun Aug 18 2013

It was indeed a beautiful ride. The first picture is the quaint little inn that I had lunch at.

Sat Aug 17 2013

This is the most popular trail in the park. Unless you demand solitude, this trail earned every one of it's five stars. Few trails anywhere offer so much in such a short distance. After a pleasant short descent you come to the CCC built suspension bridge. Already something interesting on such a short trail. Once across Great Trough Creek a right turn takes you up to Abbot Run and Rainbow Falls. Rainbow Falls is small but pretty. There is a bench to enjoy Rainbow Falls. Then up the CCC built stone steps overlooking Abbot Run and finally ending in the Balanced Rock area. Be careful with your children on the stone steps. They are uneven, different heights and it would be a nasty fall to the rocks in Abbot Run below. This trail can be looped or continued on with several other trails.

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