Pine Grove Furnace State Park
Steeped in natural and historical features, the 696-acre Pine Grove Furnace State Park is on beautiful South Mountain in southern Cumberland County. Surrounded by Michaux State Forest, Pine Grove Furnace features two lakes, 25-acre Laurel Lake and 1.7-acre Fuller Lake, a historic area and the Appalachian Trail.
Hiking - Biking - Picnicking - Swimming - Boating - Fishing - Hunting - Education - Cross-country Skiing - Snowmobiling - Ice Skating - Ice Fishing - Organized Group Tenting - Cabin - Camping - Ironmaster's Mansion - Appalachian Trail Museum
Picnicking: Many picnic tables are scattered in several locations of the park. Charcoal grills, drinking water and restrooms are available. Three picnic pavilions, with seating up to 140, may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved picnic pavilions are free on a first-come, first-served basis.
Make a reservation.
Swimming: Two beaches are open from May 1 to September 30, 8 a.m. to sunset. Laurel Beach is swim at your own risk. Lifeguards are on duty at Fuller Beach from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Memorial Day weekend until Labor Day unless otherwise posted. Please follow posted rules for swimming when lifeguards are off duty.
Swimmers at Laurel Lake and especially at Fuller Lake are advised to exercise caution because of the extreme depths and cold subsurface waters.
In the summer season, a snack bar is available at each beach.
Boating: electric motors only
Boating is permitted only on the 25-acre Laurel Lake, which has a boat launch, 85 mooring spaces and a boat rental.
Motorboats must display a current boat registration. Non-powered boats must display one of the following: boat registration; launching permit or mooring permit from Pennsylvania State Parks, available at most state park offices; launching permit from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.
Complete information on boating rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.
Fishing: The common fish in the 25-acre Laurel Lake and the smaller 1.7-acre Fuller Lake are pickerel, bass, perch and stocked trout. Mountain Creek, which flows through the park, has brown, brook and rainbow trout. Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission regulations apply.
Complete information on fishing rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.
Hunting and Firearms: Over 75 acres are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, turkey, rabbit, pheasant and squirrel.
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 car, trailer or leased campsite. The only exception is that law enforcement officers and individuals with a valid Pennsylvania License to Carry Firearms may carry said firearm concealed on their person while they are within the park.
Complete information on hunting rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Game Commission Web site.
Biking: 2 miles of trails
Hiking: 4 miles of trails
Buck Ridge Trail: 6 miles - This trail through the Michaux State Forest connects Kings Gap Environmental Education Center and Pine Grove Furnace State Park. The trailhead is across from the park office and is marked with yellow paint blazes.
Creek Trail: 0.5-mile - Begin at the amphitheater and wind past vernal ponds and a stand of white pine along Mountain Creek near the camping area.
Mountain Creek: 1.4-mile - This trail is a link between the bicycle trail to Fuller Lake and the Icehouse Road to Laurel Lake. The trail affords the hiker an alternate path to Laurel Lake Day Use area other than the paved roadway. This trail winds along scenic Mountain Creek. The trail meanders through forests and wetlands as it follows Mountain Creek downstream to Laurel Lake. Deer, heron, waterfowl and beaver can be seen along this trail.
Koppenhaver Trail: 1-mile - Begin this scenic, yellow-blazed loop trail at the far end of Fuller Ball Field. The footpath crosses Toms Run and passes through stands of mature pines and hemlocks.
Pole Steeple Trail: 0.75-mile - This blue-blazed Michaux State Forest trail contains some steep climbs. The entire park can be viewed from the Pole Steeple Overlook, which is a quartzite rock outcropping. The trail begins at the Pole Steeple parking lot, along the Railroad Bed Road by Laurel Lake, and proceeds up Piney Mountain to the rocky overlook.
The steep grade and sheer drop may stress some individuals. Parents are advised to closely supervise children, especially when they are on the rocks and ledges.
Swamp Trail: 0.25-mile - Investigate a small, forested swamp filled with interesting plants and animals. The trail begins and ends on the bicycle path.
Appalachian Trail: This famous 2,000-mile national scenic trail is marked by white blazes and goes from Mt. Katahdin in central Maine to Springer Mountain in northern Georgia. The trail is popular with day hikers as well as backpackers.
You can begin your Appalachian Trail experience along Quarry Road by the furnace. A parking area near the furnace pavilion and a comfort station are available for trail users. Please visit the park office to register your car and intended destination and/or time of return.
Camping: flush toilets, warm showers, some electric hook-ups
Explore the campground map.
Explore camping for more information.
Make a reservation.
Free Camping for Campground Hosts: 1 host positions
Paymasters Cabin: This historic house is available for rent year-round as a modern cabin. The cabin sleeps six people and is near the camp store. Guests should bring all essentials like sheets, linens and dishes. Modern cabin prices apply.
Explore cabins for more information.
Make a reservation.
Organized Group Tenting: Organized adult or youth groups may reserve the rustic area year-round. The area is divided into six separate sites with capacities varying from 35 to 50 people each, or the entire camp can be reserved. The sites are in a wooded area surrounding an open playfield.
Explore organized group tenting for more information.
Explore the Winter Report for the current snow and ice depths.
Cross-country Skiing: Nordic skiers can enjoy the use of the railroad grade when snow conditions allow. Although no trails are specifically designated for cross-country skiing, numerous opportunities exist, especially during winters with heavy snowfalls, both within the park and on the surrounding state forest lands.
Snowmobiling: A trailhead parking area on nearby state forest land provides parking for vehicles and snowmobile trailers, and access to many miles of trails on state forest lands. Maps of the trails are available at the park office.
Ice Fishing: Ice fishing is permitted on Laurel Lake. Ice thickness is not monitored except in the designated skating area. For your safety, be sure the ice is at least four inches thick and carry safety equipment. Ice sports are prohibited on Fuller Lake.
Ice Skating: At Laurel Lake, a small area by the boat launch is maintained for ice-skating. Ice sports are prohibited on Fuller Lake.
Environmental Education and Interpretation
Pine Grove Furnace State Park offers a wide variety of environmental education and interpretive programs from spring through fall. Through hands-on activities, guided walks and programs, participants gain appreciation, understanding, and develop a sense of stewardship toward the natural and cultural resources.
Curriculum-based environmental education programs are available to schools, youth organizations and homeschool associations. Group programs must be scheduled in advance by calling the park office.
Several special events including the Fall Furnace Fest and the Appalachian Trail Museum Festival are conducted each year.
Explore the Calendar of Events for a listing of events from today forward.
Explore environmental education and interpretation for more information.
Appalachian Trail Museum
The Appalachian Trail Museum is located in the Old Mill Building at 1120 Pine Grove Road (along PA 233) between Pine Grove Furnace Park office and the Pine Grove General Store. Museum exhibits and programs pay tribute to the pioneer trail builders and hikers including Earl Shaffer, Grandma Gatewood, Gene Espy and Ed Garvey, and their commitment to fitness and conservation. The Children’s Discovery Area provides fun, hands-on learning experiences. The Museum is near the midpoint of the 2,179 mile Appalachian Trail, a National Scenic Trail that goes through 14 states from Georgia to Maine. The Museum welcomes newcomers to the A.T. as well as veteran hikers and frequently offers an opportunity to meet current long distance hikers.
The Museum is open from noon to 4 p.m. seven days a week from Memorial Day to Labor Day and noon to 4 p.m. on weekends in the spring and fall. The Museum is closed from Nov. 1 to March 31. Admission is free of charge although donations are welcomed. Parking for the Museum is adjacent to the Furnace Stack Picnic Pavilion. 717-486-8126. www.atmuseum.org
The Ironmaster's Mansion was officially reopened May 6, 2011 after undergoing a year of renovations. It serves as a hostel, providing lodging to the general public in a dormitory-style environment, an educational facility with meeting rooms and as a venue for wedding receptions, family reunions and special events. The mansion was built in 1829 and has a very impressive history of guests and owners. Some of the interesting folklore is the story of the secret passage in the stairwell closet was part of the Underground Railroad. Come see for yourself and decide. The mansion is open on Sunday's between Memorial Day and Labor Day at 3 p.m. for tours. It is open daily April to December at 5 p.m. to accept overnight guests. To book a wedding, meeting or special event, please e-mail: IronmastersPineGrove@gmail.com or call 717-486-4108. The Ironmaster's Mansion is being managed by the Central Pennsylvania Conservancy. www.CentralPaConservancy.org
Take a 360 degree tour. http://tours.360businesstechnology.com/public/vtour/display/35217?a=1
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.