Caledonia State Park

The 1,125-acre Caledonia State Park is in Adams and Franklin counties, midway between Chambersburg and Gettysburg along the Lincoln Highway, US 30.

The park is nestled within South Mountain, the northern terminus of the well-known Blue Ridge Mountain of Maryland and Virginia. Within South Mountain there are four state parks and 84,000 acres of state forest land waiting to be explored and enjoyed. The soils on either side of South Mountain are ideal for fruit production, proven by the abundance of orchards in the surrounding area.

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Hiking   -  Picnicking   -  Swimming   -  Fishing   -  Hunting   -  Education   -  Golf   -  Theater   -  Sunday School   -  Arts and Crafts Fair   -  Organized Group Tenting   -  Cabin   -  Camping

Seasons and Hours: The park is open every day of the year, sunrise to sunset. Day use areas close at dusk. The park office is open specific hours. The pool, overnight areas, and other areas are open specific seasons and hours. Contact the park office for facility seasons and hours.

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Picnicking: Oak and pine trees along Conococheague Creek shade picnic tables and charcoal grills. Two rustic, CCC-era picnic pavilions may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved picnic pavilions are free on a first-come, first-served basis.

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The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Swimming: The park features a large, ADA accessible swimming pool with a waterslide and a small snack bar. The pool opens for the Memorial Day weekend and then is open weekends only until the second weekend in June when it begins seven days a week operation, weather and staffing availability permitting. The pool is typically closed on weekdays beginning mid-August but is open for weekends including Labor Day, which is the end of the pool season. Check the Park Advisories on the website for updates.

There is a fee for pool use. Swimmers arriving after 4 p.m. receive a discount. Season passes are available at the park office.

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A man fly-fishes on a pond at Caledonia State Park, Pennsylvania.Fishing: The East Branch Conococheague and Rocky Mountain creeks and Carbaugh Run flow through the park and the surrounding state forest lands, offering many exciting places for anglers. Brown trout, rainbow trout, native brook trout and some warm-water game fish can be found in these streams.

Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission laws apply. Complete information on fishing rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Hunting and Firearms: About 740 acres are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, rabbit, squirrel and turkey. Hunting is permitted in the adjacent Michaux State Forest.

Hunting woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, is prohibited. Dog training is only permitted from the day following Labor Day through March 31 in designated hunting areas. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Pennsylvania Game Commission rules and regulations apply. Contact the park office for ADA accessible hunting information.

Use extreme caution with firearms at all times. Other visitors use the park during hunting seasons. Firearms and archery equipment used for hunting may be uncased and ready for use only in authorized hunting areas during hunting seasons. In areas not open to hunting or during non-hunting seasons, firearms and archery equipment shall be kept in the owner’s vehicle or enclosed trailer. Exceptions include: law enforcement officers and individuals with a valid Pennsylvania License to Carry Firearms are authorized to carry a firearm concealed on their person while they are within a state park.

Complete information on hunting rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Game Commission Web site.

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Hiking: 10 miles of trails
The trails pass through forests and historic areas. A brochure on the hiking trails is available at the park office.

A wide trail bends out of sight at Caledonia State Park, Pennsylvania.Chambersburg Water Line: 1.9 miles, easiest
This park “right-of-way” is perfect for the entire family. Level and grassy, the waterline cuts across the entire park and offers glimpses into the dark and beautiful forest of the park.

Charcoal Hearth Trail: 2.7 miles, most difficult
This is the longest and most rugged trail in the park. With its trailhead at the falls on Thaddeus Stevens Historic Trail, Charcoal Hearth Trail climbs steeply for 10-15 minutes to Graeffenburg Mountain before leveling off, then descends gradually, ending by a quiet stream near the Furnace Dam and pond. On the descent, watch for four historic charcoal hearths (noted on the map) and an old wagon road. Keep a watchful eye out for squirrels, chipmunks, birds and deer.

Fire Road Trail: 1 mile, more difficult
This is a dirt road that serves as a fire break for the campground and access road for park vehicles.

Midland Trail: 0.7 mile, easiest
Starting at the trailhead kiosk, this trail passes through the park near the swimming pool, past the park office and ends at the old forestry museum building in the organized group tenting area. This uniquely beautiful walk is pleasant and level under a heavy canopy of white pine. This is also a great area to hear the “flute-like” song of the wood thrush on summer late afternoons.

Quarry Gap Road/Trail: 1 mile, most difficult
Hike up Quarry Gap Road to the dead end, turn left through the gates to the Appalachian Trail.

Raccoon Run Trail: 5 miles, most difficult
This is an old section of the Appalachian Trail that still connects to the main trail.

Ramble Trail: 2.2 miles, more difficult
This wide walking trail begins at the trailhead kiosk and passes through the scenic lowlands of the park then returns to the pool area. In its circular route, the trail follows the millrace of an old rolling mill and passes the rolling mill falls. The trail also passes through one of the oldest white pine plantations in Pennsylvania. This is a great place to see woodland birds.

Thaddeus Stevens Historic Trail: 0.8 mile, easiest
Guides are available at the park office for this self-guiding trail. Step back in time to imagine the bustling community of the Caledonia Iron Works. Investigate the blacksmith shop, millrace, falls, furnace dam and header dam. Start at the trailhead kiosk or at the blacksmith shop. Return to the park by way of the Midland Trail which passes by the park office.

A wooden foot bridge spans a creek at Caledonia State Park, Pennsylvania.Three Valley Trail: 0.7 mile, most difficult
Beginning along Ramble Trail, Three Valley Trail crosses over the Chambersburg Water Line and ascends 400 feet up Ore Bank Hill to the Appalachian Trail (AT). This trail is maintained by the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club as a side trail to the AT. This trail is blazed in blue, but white blazes appear when the trail merges with the AT at the top of the incline. Retrace your steps or make a right onto the AT.

Trolley Trail: 0.7 mile, easiest
Although short, this path is suitable for bicycles. This trail as once an old trolley grade that brought visitors from Chambersburg to the Caledonia Amusement Park. The old blacksmith shop once served as the trolley station. CAUTION – for your safety, do not bicycle on US 30.

Whispering Pine Nature Trail: 0.4 mile, easiest
Discover the lowland forests of Caledonia State Park on this short loop trail that begins along the park road between the two bridges after passing the park office.

Appalachian Trail: 1.8 miles in the park, most difficult
The famous 2,186 mile Appalachian Trail (AT) passes through the park on its way north to Mt. Katahdin in Maine and south to Springer Mountain in Georgia. Hiking this section of the AT gives hikers a taste of the terrain of the entire trail. Many scouting groups use this part of the AT as a “shake down” trip before setting out on longer excursions. Visitors can do an overnight hike on the AT from Caledonia to Pine Grove Furnace State Park. The PATC (Potomac Appalachian Trail Club), an all-volunteer club, maintains this section of the trail.

Golf: An 18-hole, par 68, public golf course is just south of US 30. Constructed in the late 1920s, the course is the oldest and one of the most scenic courses in south central Pennsylvania. For more information contact, Caledonia Golf Enterprises, Inc., 9515 Golf Course Road, Fayetteville, PA 17222, 717-352-7271.

Cathedral in the Pines: Caledonia’s Summer Sunday School dates back to the summer of 1917 when the Manges and Moyer families decided to provide a Sunday school for their children and other families’ children who spent the summer months vacationing at Caledonia, be it in tents or the increasing cabin community around the park. Since 1955, the Franklin County Sunday School Association has kept the tradition alive and offers outdoor, nondenominational Sunday school from Memorial Day Weekend to Labor Day Weekend. All are welcome to attend.

Totem Pole Playhouse: Since 1952, the Totem Pole Playhouse, a summer stock theater, has offered performances during the summer months. Request a schedule of shows by contacting: Totem Pole Playhouse, 9555 Golf Course Road, P.O. Box 603, Fayetteville, PA 17222, 888-805-7056. 717-352-2164

Caledonia Arts and Crafts Fair: This event is held annually on the second Saturday in July. Join as many as 150 skilled crafts people and artists as they display and sell their creations.

Stay the Night

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Camping: flush toilets, warm showers, electric hook-ups
Tent and trailer sites are available in two campgrounds. The camping season opens the day before trout season and ends with the conclusion of deer season in December. Both campgrounds have drinking water, showers and flush toilets. A sanitary dump station is available in Hosack Run Campground.

Chinquapin Hill Campground is nestled on the side of a mountain among plenty of shade trees and is close to the swimming pool. Some sites have electric hookups. The park amphitheater is in this camping area and is accessible to the public from the day use parking area. Pets are prohibited in this campground.

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Hosack Run Campground is one mile from the main day use area. All sites in this camping area are pet friendly. This campground has moderately level, open and shaded sites, and many sites have electric hookups. This camping area also has a small playground for children. There are ADA accessible sites available with a nearby family-assist restroom.

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Free Camping for Campground Hosts: 2 host positions
Modern campground host site amenities include 30-amp electric service. A two-week minimum stay is required. Hosts are required to assist park personnel for 40 hours per week. Contact the park office for additional information and availability.

A cozy patio holds a table and chairs at Caledonia Lodge at Caledonia State Park, Pennsylvania.Caledonia Lodge: Located along US 30, Caledonia Lodge is a two-story frame house available for rent year-round. The lodge has a modern kitchen, closed-in porch, 1½ baths, dining room, living room, central heat and three bedrooms that sleep ten people.

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Click on this orange dot to make a reservation at a Pennsylvania State Park.

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Organized Group Tenting: Caledonia offers 5 separate 20-person sites for rent to organized adult and youth groups. This area opens the day before trout season in March and closes the 4th Sunday in October. There are flush toilets, picnic tables and fire rings. Advance reservations are required. Caledonia makes a great base for groups touring the Gettysburg National Military Park.

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Environmental Education and Interpretation

A park educator offers programming during the summer season. The history and environment of the area are topics for discovery for park visitors of all ages. Children’s programs, guided walks and campfire programs are scheduled throughout the summer season. Program schedules are available at the park office. Special requests are welcome and may be directed to the park office.

The Thaddeus Steven Blacksmith Shop has operating hours during the summer. Visitors can tour and, on occasion, visit with a guest blacksmith as he hammers out iron products. The park is also the home of the Pennsylvania Forest Fire Association Museum, located across from the park office.

Explore the Calendar of Events for a listing of upcoming events.

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Access for People with Disabilities

The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.If you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, please contact the park you plan to visit.