Bald Knob Ridge Loop

A sub-7-mile loop perfect for exploring Shingletown Gap.

Trail Running Difficult

Distance
11 km
Ascent
356 m
Descent
356 m
Duration
1-2 hrs
Low Point
416 m
High Point
697 m
Gradient
10˚
Bald Knob Ridge Loop Map

Considered one of the quieter corners of Rothrock, Shingletown Gap is a local favorite and a convenient spot to enjoy a rail run near town. Several intersecting trails - some easier, some harder - offer plenty of options to shorten or lengthen your run, though it may take a few visits before you can feel comfortable without a map. The views from Bald Knob Ridge are absolutely stunning, and the solitude found on the Lower Trail draws runners back time and time again.

Description

Named after an early conservationist, Rothrock is blanketed with spring and summer wildflowers, plus plenty of ferns. You may even find edible berries along the way. Parts of the run are on hard-packed dirt, though most of the loop is rocky or sandy and typical of most trails in Shingletown Gap.

To run this loop, you can park at Shingletown Gap (seen here), or from the Bald Knob Ridge trailhead on Laurel Run Road. Neither restrooms nor water are available at either, though Galbraith Gap near the Tussey Ski area has vault toilets. A small stream parallels the Lower Trail, offering the option to refill if you bring a water filter or treatment tabs along.

For a slightly longer tour linking Galbraith Gap, Little Flat Fire Tower, and Shingletown Gap, check out this route instead. Both runs are equally enjoyable, though your running style may lead you to like one over the other.

Difficulty

Difficult

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area