Hickory Run State Park
The 15,990-acre Hickory Run State Park, Carbon County, lies in the western foothills of the Pocono Mountains. This large park has over 40 miles of hiking trails, three state park natural areas and miles of trout streams. Boulder Field, a striking boulder-strewn area, is a National Natural Landmark.
Hiking - Picnicking - Swimming - Fishing - Hunting - Disc Golf - Orienteering - Geocaching - Education - Cross-country Skiing - Snowmobiling - Ice Skating - Organized Group Cabin Camps - Organized Group Tenting - Camping Cottages - Deluxe Camping Cottages - 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 beach, overnight areas, and other areas are open specific seasons and hours. Contact the park office for facility seasons and hours.
Picnicking: A large picnic area is near Sand Spring Lake which has a swimming beach, disc golf and orienteering. There are hundreds of picnic tables, restrooms, playground equipment, drinking water and trash containers. A picnic pavilion may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. If unreserved it is free on a first-come, first-served basis.
Swimming: A sand beach at Sand Spring Lake is open from late May to mid-September, 8 a.m. to sunset. Please read and follow posted rules for swimming. Swim at your own risk. A snack bar has sandwiches, drinks, ice cream and snacks.
Smoking is prohibited on the beach and in the swimming area. For visitors who smoke and still want to use the beach, designated areas adjacent to the beach are provided. The restriction includes cigarettes, pipes, cigars, e-cigarettes, and other handheld, lighted smoking devices.
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Fishing: Anglers find excellent sport in many of the streams and lakes within the park boundaries. Some streams are stocked with brook and brown trout. Mud Run is a delayed harvest, artificial lure only stream. The lower 2.9 miles of Hickory Run, from near the Saylorsville Dam to the Lehigh River, is a catch and release fishing only area. A fishing pier for people with disabilities is on the CCC Pond, near the campground.
Fishing is discouraged in Sand Spring Lake and is prohibited in the swimming area.
The Lehigh River, which flows along the western boundary of the park, has warm-water game fish, trout and panfish. Francis E. Walter Dam, about 20 minutes north of the park, provides boating and angling for trout and warm-water game fish.
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.
Hunting and Firearms: Most of the park is open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are white-tailed deer, turkey, black bear and gray squirrel. The adjoining State Game Lands 40, 129 and 141 have additional areas open to hunting.
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.
Hiking: 44 miles of trails
Blue-blazed trails allow cross-country skiing. Orange-blazed trails allow snowmobiling.
The trails lead through areas rich in historic and scenic interest. This is especially true from mid-June until mid-July when the mountain laurel and rhododendron are in bloom and again in mid-October at the height of the fall foliage.
Biking is prohibited on all trails at Hickory Run State Park, but is permitted at nearby Lehigh Gorge State Park on the rail-trail.
Disc Golfing: A 19-hole disc golf course is in the Sand Spring Day Use Area. The course is flat, moderately wooded and has crushed stone tees, basket holes and is about one mile in length. Please be cautious of picnickers when playing the first ten holes. scorecard (.pdf)
Orienteering: The three permanent orienteering courses in the park are a joint venture of the Delaware Valley Orienteering Association (www.dvoa.org) and the Pocono Orienteering Club (www.dvoa.org). The beginner course in the Sand Spring Day Use Area takes at least an hour to complete. An advanced course begins near the Saylorsville Dam and takes about four hours to complete. Detailed maps are available at the park office.
Geocaching: In this high tech treasure hunting game a Web site lists hidden containers called geocaches that players using GPS devices locate outdoors. Park staff and individuals have placed many caches in the park. Brochures on several educational caches developed by the park are available at the park office. Geocachers interested in placing a new cache within the park must contact the park office. www.geocaching.com
Camping: flush toilets, warm showers, some electric hook-ups
The campground has modern facilities from the second Friday in April until the third Sunday in October when the dump station and all facilities with running water close for the season. Rustic camping continues until mid-December. Pets are permitted on designated sites.
Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
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Attention All Campers: Because of an active bear population, overnight guests are required to store all food and any scented items such as toothpaste, deodorant, and dish soap in their vehicle while away from their site. This includes when leaving the site for even a short period of time, day or night. Park staff will enforce these rules and failure to comply may result in a citation.
Free Camping for Campground Hosts: 2 host positions
Camping Cottages: Three cottages in the campground feature wooden walls and floors, windows, porch, electric baseboard heat, lights and electric outlets. Each cottage sleeps five people in a single bunk and single/double bunk. There is no running water or restrooms in the cottages, however there is potable water and rustic pit-latrines nearby. Additionally, there is a modern restroom and shower facility for shared use in the lower section of the campground available from opening to the third Sunday in October.
Deluxe Camping Cottages: Two deluxe cottages are available from the second Friday in April until the end of deer season in mid-December. The deluxe cottages have minimal furnishings; kitchen stove top, refrigerator, electric heat, lighting and bunk beds. There is no running water, or restrooms in these deluxe cottages, however there is potable water and rustic vault latrines nearby Additionally, there is a modern restroom and shower facility for shared use in the lower section of the campground available from opening to the third Sunday in October.
Organized Group Tenting: Adult and youth groups can rent one or more of the 13 group sites. Across PA 534 from the campground, this rustic area is open year-round and has picnic tables, fire rings, non-flush toilets and water spigots.
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Organized Group Cabin Camps: Camp Daddy Allen holds 124 people and Camp Shehaqua holds 149 people. The camps are open from the second Friday in April through the third Sunday in October. Located in a wooded setting with adjacent play fields, the camps share a swimming pool that is open from about June 1 to Labor Day. Groups must supply their own certified lifeguards.
Maps and rosters for the group camps are on the maps tab, above.
Explore organized group cabin camps for more information.
Cross-country Skiing: The 14 miles of designated trails are marked with blue blazes.
Snowmobiling: The 21 miles of designated trails are marked with orange blazes.
Ice Skating: When conditions permit, Sand Spring Lake is available for ice skating. Ice thickness is not monitored.
Environmental Education and Interpretation
Diverse habitats and forest types, extensive wild areas and unique geological formations make Hickory Run an excellent outdoor classroom. From March to November, an environmental education specialist conducts hands-on activities, guided walks and presentations on the natural and historical resources for school groups, scouts, civic organizations and the general public. Curriculum-based environmental education programs are available to schools and youth groups. Group programs must be arranged in advance by calling the park office. Teacher workshops are available.
Explore the Calendar of Events for a listing of upcoming events.
Explore environmental education and interpretation for more information.
Access for People with Disabilities
If you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, please contact the park you plan to visit.