Water Tank and Rattling Run Trail Loop via Appalachian Trail

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State Game Lands Number 211

Water Tank and Rattling Run Trail Loop via Appalachian Trail is a 9.9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Elizabethville, Pennsylvania that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is best used from April until November.

Length9.9 miElevation gain1686 ftRoute typeLoop
HikingNature tripsForestViewsWildflowersWildlife
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Reviews (111)
Photos (292)
Recordings (105)
Completed (170)
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Abbi Brown
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Hiking
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T Waltz
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Hiking
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Pete Zornosa
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Hiking
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Derek Conan
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Hiking
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Zach Michali
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HikingGreat!Rocky

Be warned!! Bad signal on the north eastern portion of the loop in the gap between the mountains. We got a little turned around. If you go counter clockwise, you are looking for blue blazes going up the mountain. Along the top and down the southern side, you follow a wide access road type path that is not marked with blazes. Towards the bottom of that north eastern section you should look for yellow blazes. These will take you up the mountain again to intersect the AT. From there, you turn left to follow well-marked white blazes back down to the parking lot. Have fun out there!!

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Janine Rider
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Hiking
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Tommy Toone
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Zach Miller
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Running

Yeehooo!

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Krishna Nemani
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HikingOver grownRocky

Did the trail early on Sunday morning - nice and quiet for the vast majority of the hike. Only really saw people once I got onto the AT at the end (took previous hikers' advice in the comments and went counter clockwise on the loop). Couple of thoughts overall: 1. All told, good hike and will likely do again. I tend to take my camera on hikes but I would skip it for this one - no real views and didn't see a whole lot of wildlife beyond chipmunks. 2. The first part of the trail once you hit the top of the uphill is poorly marked. I'm really glad a recent hiker tied blue plastic markers to trees, that really helped. still ended up tromping though the woods a bit at the beginning though. definitely recommend having a fully charged phone with the app to show you the way. Once you're on the horseshoe trail, you're golden. 3. Lots of ankle to knee-length grass on the ridgeline. Would recommend wearing pants. 4. It's Pennsylvania so expects lots of rocks. Other than that, definitely a nice hike and one in likely to do again. I may take the red trail next time, or go looking for the fire tower, which I didn't get to do this time.

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Marci Fagan
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This trail is definitely a challenge. As others have mentioned, I reccomend doing the steeper incline first. I only give 3 stars because I like the 'reward'of nice views on my hikes. This trail doesn't have any. If it wasn't for the focus needed, due to how rocky it is, it would have bordered on boring. Just my opinion, though, and I did enjoy the workout.

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Ken Massey
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RunningOver grownRocky

Tough but worthwhile. I suggest going counterclockwise as others have recommended. The trail along the ridge at the top is gentle and peaceful. Coming up the trail was not well marked and it was pretty rocky at times. No views; will have to find the fire tower next time.

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Luna Deng
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Hiking

Backpacked this trip and it was my first time. Fire tower has 7 floors and it was terrifying for me to go up there. The views on the fire tower were beautiful.

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Jeff Bridi
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HikingRocky
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Kent Donaldson
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Hiking

Hiked this today counterclockwise. Loved the challenge, but not well marked. Alltrails kept us on track and was able to thru hike in good time. Kudos to others for enlightening us to what to expect. Would definitely recommend this hike.

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Abhishek V
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Hiking

Very difficult. And long

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Colby Zimmerman
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HikingBlowdownOver grownRocky
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Walter Shallenberger
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HikingOver grownRocky

Trails are a little hard to spot but are marked by carins. I’d recommend doing it counterclockwise to get the steepest portion done early. If you’re going to the fire tower, when you get to the ridge keep going left at each intersection and you’ll reach a grassy road that heads to the fire tower. About 1.5 miles after you pass the water tank, bushwhack about 500 feet off the trail to your left and you’ll reach devils racecourse which is a 2 mile long boulder field with a creek running underneath. you can follow that down hill into the trees to a trail marked with red blazes that will take you back to the AT or just cut back through the woods to the watertank trail which is always close by. Definitely one of my favorite hikes in the region would highly recommend.

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Dennis Fried
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HikingBlowdownRocky

I recommend doing this counter clockwise. Nice variety throughout!

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mw7sj2 uz3r85v
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HikingBlowdownOver grownRocky

The wide grassy road portion along the top had some nice scenery change. The AT portion is well maintained, but the west side of this loop going up the mountain looked as though it hadn't had much maintenance in awhile. Lots of downed trees across the trail and getting overgrown, but still good for the difficulty...and of course, plenty of rocks. The trail intersections are mostly marked by cairns. The other side of Water Tank Trail that goes down toward Stony Creek Rail Trail had nice water/waterfalls flowing down along the trail but is extremely steep with a lot of loose rocks. Had gone down that way which is marked with faded blue blazes and then took the shorter orange blazed connecting trail back up to Rattling Run Trail. That part was also getting overgrown and still rather steep, but you get a somewhat decent view of the mountain to the south (trees are more sparse toward the top).

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Jonathan Waltz
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HikingRocky

great hike and beautiful view from the fire tower at the top. you can see where the tower is based on where I paused my hike. after I paused it I went a little off trail, but got back on fairly quickly. also my GPS kept dropping out, I obviously didnt go up over 12,000 feet.

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Toan Ly
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HikingRocky

My ankles and knees felt it after the hike. Nice views! Quiet and peaceful!

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