Thick Mountain and Swift Run Trail

MODERATE 32 reviews

Thick Mountain and Swift Run Trail is a 3.3 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Mc Clure, Pennsylvania that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 3.3 miles Elevation Gain: 761 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly


nature trips


trail running


bird watching




wild flowers





Lot for 10+ cars, Latrine, Picnic Tables Some of the best examples of HUGE uncut old growth Hemlocks. The smell alone is with the trip.

off trail
over grown
23 days ago

I generally love this hike, but recent weather patterns must have been rough. Hiked the trail counter-clockwise. There are trees downed all over the place and overgrowth was abundant. Had I not hiked this many times before I think it would have been easy to lose the trail - especially on the descent within the last mile. It's still incredibly peaceful and beautiful, but overgrowth and downed trees require quite a bit more sure footedness and concentration.

11 months ago

We did a short hike: the Hemlock Trail, which was a bit of a climb at times, with rocky, narrow, overgrown sections; plus there were several large downed trees across the path which had to be climbed over. After Hemlock Trail joins Swift Run Trail (across the bridge), we turned right, heading back to the parking lot. Evidently there's much more traffic on that trail, as it was well-defined and easy going. A few downed trees along the way, but with 'cut outs' in them, passage was a breeze. Absolutely loved the hike, wild and beautiful woodlands...magnificent mosses & ferns & lichen-covered rocks...and of course, the giant trees --gorgeous! And perhaps best of all, we didn't encounter a single soul....the solitude was an added blessing!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Nice to get lost among the tall hemlocks for a while. I read reviews before I went, especially about climbing over downed trees, but there were a lot more and they were more difficult than I expected. We did counter clockwise to go up the mountain on the switchbacks. It was a climb but manageable. The decent gets pretty steep and you have to watch your step with so many twigs on the ground it’s easy to lose your footing. Watch for the plane crash at the top, still several pieces of wreckage you will notice on the right. Decent trail but nothing too amazing to make me feel like I need to do it again.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Nice and secluded!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Beautiful, I love this trail. Can be challenging but I wouldn't rate it as difficult.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Difficult hike but well worth it. Starting out on swift run across the stream (got a wet foot crossing due to higher water) up to tower trail, down thick mountain. Thick mountain is very steep on the way down. love the mossy rocks at the end - beautiful. No great vistas as the trees are too high but beautiful trail all around. have down this quite a few times. The smell is wonderful!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Beautiful territory to enjoy some of what's left of the Eastern Hemlocks (many of which are now dead or on their way). The climb is steep but worth it. Keep an eye out for old plane wreckage on the top of the mountain marked by a large pile of rocks on the side of the trail.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Great trail! Don't be fooled by the shorter distance, this hike is a workout. If you walk counter clockwise, the uphill after the creek is a climb; the downhill at the end can be hard on the knees. Be prepared to get your feet just a tiny bit wet (if you're not wearing waterproof boots) at the far end of the trail. The water was high and the hopscotch rocks were under water when we were there. Like others have mentioned, it's not a manicured path, but it's easy to follow, and I prefer a more rustic trail. There's no "take your breath away" view, but the whole trail is gorgeous. Trash was at a minimum. I think I saw 3 bits of it on the whole hike. We didn't see a single soul the whole time, so that probably explains the cleanliness. Overall, this is one of my favorite hikes. If you have the time, drive over the mountain to the regional office and pick up some maps and literature.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

This trail was wonderful. Could use some trail maintenance. Beautiful for spring and I'm sure fall too. We hiked it in April 2017. Will definitely visit again! Was a great work out. The up hills are a bit overwhelming but totally worth it! Can't wait to go back!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

the trail is definitely longer than it says it is. I took my son today and we ended up turning around and going back. it attaches to tower trail which isn't on this app and hemlocks trail which circles back to the parking area. we would've went further but my son ended up falling on a bunch of large rocks and hurt his knee. this trail is very rocky and it narrows at some points with a steep drop off to one side. overall a fun day. (watch for ticks also)

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

I would say this is 7/10 difficulty. Was an interesting time finding this place and making sure I stayed on the trail for sure.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

GPS Snyder-Middleswarth picnic/natural area, no problem. Just study the map a bit, you'll lose reception. Our topo of PA served after that point. Mature Hemlock give a deep woodsy feel the entire run, akin to Oregon coastal hiking. The woods smells sometimes mixed with arid desert type smells sometimes too though, as there has been scant rain this summer. Many delicate, white Aster flowers. Some scattered rhodys up the trail a good ways, not many. No vistas on Swift (valley by tiny trickle creek (Labor Day)), but a couple nice 125 y.o. Hemlock and some mature pine, nicely somewhat groomed trail, fairly rocky, no boulders, some detours around fallen trees require a bit more effort, but only 1x limbs sort of in way. Also took Kreb Gap at the T/terminus of Swift Run tr, Kreb gets real steep, about the time it gets steep, there's a tiny view back toward Tower trail which has no views, ever, but is nice switchback grade with stone steps at top 10m. Fire tower could be built for view if you bring enough structural steel. Cabin is missing too, would be cool to have history/plaque. 2.5 hours hiking time at steady relax pace. No potable water available. At noon we were the first up the trail, on the holiday w/e (spider webs ha), only 4 chickadees and a few calls high up the hill side, so very peaceful. May do again, winter snow would be awesome, so pretty on giant trees and rocks, if a bit tech.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Don't use the directions from here to find the trailhead. We actually had to ask for directions from locals. The trailhead is in the Snyder/Middlewarth Picnic Grounds. There are multiple routes, as shared can be as challenging as you want it to be. We took the Swift Run Trail to Krebs. Crossed over the stream and climb up the hill. It is a good cardio. We stayed on Krebs until we run into the trail that turns into District and goes down a steep descent on Thick Mountain Trail. We crossed the stream and went up the hill that takes you on the dirt road that leads to the picnic grounds. Very well- maintained trail.

Monday, July 09, 2012

This is a great trail. Alone it is an out and back that can be a short one or as much as a 5-7 mile out and back. The cool thing is, at this area in Snyder County, there are a lot of little bisecting trails that will allow you to do a nice loop. You can do a high skill "Tower Trial" loop or a much softer "Hemlocks Trail" loop. No matter which way you choose, depending upon the season, there will be downed trees you must traverse. This is some of the last remaining old growth Hemlock forest (State Tree). Some of the best examples of HUGE uncut Hemlocks. The smell alone is worth the trip.

1 month ago

3 months ago

5 months ago

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

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