Explore the most popular backpacking trails near Bethel with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Can get very rocky at times but the view from the 501 lookout never gets old!

Loved the view from the 501 lookout. Will upload some drone pictures.

Overlooks were beautiful, but the reservoir and waterfall made this trip. We camped right next to the waterfall. Beautiful area.

Can get very rocky at times but the view from the 501 lookout never gets old!

All I gotta say is holy rocks. This trail felt like I was getting my ankles broken by James harden every time I made a step. The rocks are everywhere as I learned very quickly after setting up my tent and going to lay down to relax when BAM, my back got bombodied by a rock. Sleep? Non existent on this trail, but the campsites are A1. In all, if your into walking through muddy/Mississippi river flooded trails, ankle shattering rocks for days, 2 maybe 3 good views, then this trails for you.

Did and out and back from Route 183 to 501. Took about 8.5 hours. Trail was a little swampy the 1st few miles today. Located the marker for Fort Dietrich Snyder about 1/2 mile in. Camp Hertline located in Shuberts Gap is beautiful with plenty of running water. There is also a rock field to the right (southbound). Plenty of lookouts along the Shikellamy summit. Great view at Showers Steps as well. Get ready for the rocks after that. There is a parking lot right where the trail meets Route 501. A quick shoutout to the Blue Mountain Eagle Climbing Club who were performing trail maintenance today.

The reservoir is a beautiful spot. Great wide open camping area.

Absolutely love this trail for the summer, the waters cold but worth the swim!

I have now camped on the AT sites twice now (Fall and Winter) and the trail, site, and scenery are all great. The reservoir is a unique and fantastic place to be in all 4 seasons.

Starts out a rocky trail, but leads into a decent trail, with gradual inclines and declines...you come across a few trails and access roads along the way.
The overlook is worth the hike.
Note: If you cross the road you can see the other part of the AT its worth the short walk to another overlook of the valley.

did this by myself and its a pretty easy trail. that said rocks are everywhere and you should have some purpose made shoes/boots for trails. the camp sight is nice but kind of small and there isnt much in the way of firewood. over all though it was great and would do it again.

I’m getting older! This was tougher than it should Have been for me and my girlfriend. It was a very good hike the view is spectacular very rocky make sure to wear boots we were both wearing just normal sneakers it is a very extremely rocky section of the trail.

My Husband and I did this hike on a beautiful September day. We enjoyed hiking through the woods and it took us about an hour and a half to get to Round Head Lookout. Very few people on the trail - nice and quiet. We will be back here once the color starts to peak a bit more!

We did a short hike in(about 4 miles) from 183 to hertlein campsite, spent the night and hiked back out. it was really muddy and swampy from the flash flood 2 days ago. and its definitely rocky but still a nice hike and good for amateurs like us. The campsite was nice and theres a old dam they use as a watering hole. We'll do it again!

We left one car at either end and did a nice 4 hour hike. The was a lot of water on the trail for about a mile on the 183 end. It was about 85° but there was plenty of shade from the forest.

Not a review...looking for insight.
Me and my husband are planning on backpacking this trail overnight in early August. Are there any considerations that I should be aware of in terms of camping and parking?
Do I need to reserve a campsite?
Is my car ok overnight in the parking lot at Rt 183

Did this as a long out and back day hike. Ended up at 21.5 miles after a few side trails. Typical PA rocks throughout but not that bad once you are used to them. Cool boulder field near the reservoir about 5 miles from the parking area at 183. There are also springs near both ends of this hike. 1 about a mile from 183 and one near the 501 shelter on the other end.

Did an out and back from the Port Clinton (N) end - maybe 10 miles total. The climb out of Port Clinton is very steep and although there are stone steps, it requires some scrambling in places. But it's short. Nice trail with all the PA rocks you'd expect.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

We did this hike but parked at 645 parking lot and did it as an in and out hiking North to Hertlein Campsite. Hike was rocky but it's PA we are known for our rocks. Campsite was great there are multiple spots to camp with fire pits. Fresh spring work water that feeds into the reservoir. The water was cold so we chose not to swim. Also neat boulder field to explore.

Did this section twice in life not a significant elevation gain but a good walk none the less. The water is fresh cold spring water that heals the soul. I seriously do believe that. And when i was there 2 thru hikers were jig'ing fish in the dam and cooking them over a campfire and man...that IS living!

The reservoir is a great place to camp. Lots of decent campsites along the trail and around the resevoir.

This is not a review!

I have a question: my friend and I are looking for a nice backpacking/hiking trip over 24-48hours on the AT. The description of this trail says it's an out & back trail and listed as 19.1 miles. Is that a "round trip" total or each way? I'm new to backpacking and want to take my time on my first AT trip. Any help or advice/suggestions would be very appreciated. Thanks!

This section was rocky like all the sections I've done on the A.T. However there were some pretty cool things to see along the way. Hertlein campsite and the old reservoir were very inviting, however we wanted to stay the night at 501 shelter, which was pretty awesome. A quick walk across 501 heading south leads to an awesome lookout to watch the sun go down. Even saw a timber rattlesnake!!

Monday, September 19, 2016

I did stay two nights here which allowed me an entire Saturday to really explore a little off trail and take in the scenery. theres a lot of camping space big enough for a group or three! I made camp at two locations and passed a flask of rum on Saturday night with a thru hiker who was very glad I had a source to charge his phone and food for his trip as he was rationing before his restock point in 3 days. as always wear appropriate footwear and be on the lookout for wildlife.

Monday, September 19, 2016

this was a fun section of the AT. Met some great people and saw some wonderful views. no need to stock up on water as there is a reservoir just a few miles in. I took my time at the Boulder field and also the lookouts especially the first Vista which has a sweet natural bench. there I stayed for 30 min out and again on my way back. and the boulder field was a lot of fun for free running just be aware of snakes. I saw a few little ones but deep in the rocks. I consider myself a bit of a trail Angel so my pack is always heavy with extra snacks batteries and perishables. other than the heavy pack a very easy hike all around.

trail running
Monday, August 01, 2016

rocky in the beginning, but then it flattens out to allow for mostly running. very nice and clean.

Nice. convenient.

we took this trail to the reservoir, which was 5 miles from 183. so 10 miles total, the setting at the reservoir was beautiful though. there are also several great spots to camp along the trail.

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