Bear Meadows Loop

An easier trail run around one of the largest freshwater bogs in the eastern US.

Trail Running Moderate

Distance
5.9 km
Ascent
51 m
Descent
51 m
Duration
0-1 hrs
Low Point
549 m
High Point
568 m
Gradient
Bear Meadows Loop Map

This is by far one of the best trail runs in Rothrock State Forest. Less than 30 minutes from downtown State College, this is a must-do for locals and travelers alike. The area, designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1965, provides a unique ecosystem atypical of the region.

Description

According to Wikipedia, "The bog, which covers 320 acres (130 ha), has been forming since the end of the last glacial period 10,000 years ago and is surrounded by an old-growth forest of boreal species typically found much farther north, such as black spruce, balsam fir, eastern hemlock, and yellow birch."

This loop can be done in either direction beginning at one of two trailheads on Bear Meadows Road. One lies at the Tussey Mountain trailhead and the other where John Wert Path begins. The route includes a short streth of old logging road, and the Jean Aron Path parallels Bear Meadows Road between the trailheads.

Accessible year-round, the summer and fall months are some of the most visited. Melting snow and frequent rain can make running in the winter and spring slightly more difficult. If visiting in the summer, look for the wild blueberries lining the path and be mindful of the black bear that reside around the meadow.

Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BearMeadowsNaturalArea https://www.pahikes.com/bear-meadows-natural-area

Difficulty

Moderate

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

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area