Trough Creek State Park


The 554-acre Trough [troff] Creek State Park is a scenic gorge formed as Great Trough Creek cuts through Terrace Mountain and empties into Raystown Lake. Rugged hiking trails lead to wonders like Balanced Rock and Rainbow Falls. Rothrock State Forest and Raystown Lake Recreation Area border the park, making a large, contiguous area of public land for recreation.

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Hiking   -  Picnicking   -  Fishing   -  Hunting   -  Biking   -  Snowmobiling   -  Trough Creek Lodge   -  Camping

This wooden pavilion is available for rent at Trough Creek State Park, Pennsylvania.The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Picnicking: Five picnic areas throughout the park provide a variety of scenic table sites. One large picnic pavilion and two smaller ones may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved picnic pavilions are free on a first-come, first-served basis. A fourth small picnic pavilion is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Restrooms, hand pump wells and activity areas are in some picnic areas.

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Fishing: Stream fishing in Great Trough Creek provides a variety of fish including trout, smallmouth bass, rock bass, sucker and panfish. In recent years, smelt fish netting has become popular each spring when these fish enter tributaries of Raystown Lake to spawn. Lake fishing is available via a short walk along Terrace Mountain Trail to a sheltered cove of Raystown Lake. Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission regulations and seasons 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 100 acres are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, turkey, grouse and squirrel. Trough Creek State Park adjoins state forest and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lands which are open for 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 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.


The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Hiking: 12 miles of trails
Hikers stroll on a leaf-lined trail at Trough Creek State Park, Pennsylvania.The trails traverse scenic vistas, cool stream hollows, hillsides and ridge tops. A popular short hike crosses the suspension bridge and follows Rhododendron Trail to Rainbow Falls. Climb the steps along the waterfall, then hike on to Balanced Rock and return the same way.

The hiking trails of Trough Creek State Park are famous for their beauty and scenic views. Because trails can be steep, rocky, follow along cliffs or pass through narrow ravines, hikers should use extreme caution when hiking and wear hiking boots. Children must be supervised at all times. Trail conditions may be slippery when wet or icy depending on weather conditions.

Abbot Run Trail: 0.18-miles, white blazes, moderate hiking
Beginning at the Rainbow Falls Bridge, this trail follows Abbot Run up out of Great Trough Creek Gorge past the trail to Balanced Rock. The trail crosses the stream twice, providing surprising changes in scenery, before ending on Old Forge Road.


Balanced Rock Trail: 0.12-mile, green blazes, moderate hiking
This trail starts at Trough Creek Drive. It passes over Great Trough Creek via a suspension bridge then past beautiful Rainbow Falls. The trail ascends a flight of CCC-built stone steps overlooking Abbot Run and ends at the geologic wonder, Balanced Rock.


Brumbaugh Trail: 2.4-miles, orange blazes, difficult hiking
Starting at Balanced Rock, this trail rises and falls through spectacular forest scenery along the hillsides and ridges. From a large opening atop one of the higher ridges there is a beautiful view of Raystown Lake. This trail ends along Old Forge Road and Terrace Mountain Trail below the old park dam.


Boulder Trail: 1.05-mile, red blazes, moderate hiking
Starting at Ice Mine, Boulder Trail follows an old logging road up the mountain through beautiful forests and is moderately steep. The scenic and winding trail crosses Terrace Mountain Road above the campground, then descends to the suspension bridge parking area. The trail name is derived from the many boulders along the trail.


Cemetery Trail: 0.28-miles, orange blazes, moderate hiking
Starting at the Paradise Furnace ruins, this trail crosses a small stream on a wooden bridge then begins a moderate climb to an old Paradise Furnace cemetery. This delightful trail passes a small waterfall and ends at an old cemetery.


Copperas Rock Trail: 0.43-mile, red blazes, moderate hiking
Starting along Trough Creek Drive at Copperas Rock, this trail climbs a fairly steep and rocky slope through oak and hemlock trees and ends on Ledges Trail. You can make a nice 2.5-mile loop by following Ledges Trail to Abbot Run Trail, descending to Rainbow Falls and following Rhododendron Trail back to Copperas Rock Trail just above the parking lot.


Laurel Run Trail: 1.8 miles, green blazes, moderate hiking
Starting along Trough Creek Drive where it crosses Laurel Run, this scenic trail follows Laurel Run between two ridges and into state forest land, then crosses Terrace Mountain Road and ends with a moderate incline to Boulder Trail. It meanders across Laurel Run numerous times by way of eight rustic bridges. This trail is very scenic and lends itself well to wildlife viewing.


Ledges Trail: 0.91-mile, blue blazes, moderate hiking
This trail starts at Trough Creek Drive below the park office and ends at Abbot Run Trail. The highlight of this trail is the panoramic view of the Great Trough Creek gorge from several lookouts. This trail passes the ruins of the old Paradise Furnace schoolhouse.


Raven Rock Trail: 0.32-mile, yellow blazes, moderate hiking
This trail starts near the upper end of Abbot Run Trail. It takes you by the geologic wonder, Balanced Rock, and finally ends up along Trough Creek at Raven Rock where you will need to retrace your steps to Balanced Rock. Raven Rock is the cliff site that local legend says was a favorite nesting site for ravens.


Rhododendron Trail: 0.6-mile, green blazes, moderate hiking
Starting at Copperas Rock Trail and ending at the suspension bridge, this trail takes hikers up and down from ridge top to valley floor. Its name is derived from the beautiful rhododendrons that line the trail. The steepest portion of the trail is very rocky and requires cautious footing. Rhododendron usually blooms in early July.


Biking: 3.5 miles of trails
Old Forge Road west of Great Trough Creek is a dirt road that can be biked to the edge of Raystown Lake.


Stay the Night


The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Camping: 29 sites, all with electricty
The cozy camping area accommodates any size camper and has a rustic restroom with no showers. Each site has an electric hookup, picnic table, campfire ring and separate crushed stone tent pad. A sanitary dump station is next to the park office. Camping is open from mid-April through mid-December. Pets are permitted on designated sites.

Explore the campground map.

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Free Camping for Campground Hosts: one host position in the rustic campground
The campground host site has amenities including 30-amp electric service, however, sewer dump station is located some distance from host site. The host is required to work 40 hours per week with two days off per week. Contact the park office for additional information and availability.


This large house is the ironmaster's mansion at Trough Creek State Park, Pennsylvania.The ADA symbol indicates that this activity or structure is ADA accessible.Trough Creek Lodge: This renovated, two story, stone home is available for rental year-round. The stone was covered with stucco which was scribed to look like brick, a common practice when the home was built.

Originally constructed in the mid-1800s as an ironmaster’s home, it has a modern eat-in-kitchen, two bathrooms, four bedrooms and central heat. The lodge has spacious porches, yard areas and sits atop a hill overlooking Paradise Furnace. The lodge is fully accessible for people with disabilities.

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Winter Activities


Explore the Winter Report for the current snow and ice depths.


Snowmobiling: The park serves as a trailhead for trails on Rothrock State Forest lands. Parking and restrooms are provided in the park. A snowmobile trail map is available from the park office.


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.