Tuscarora State Park
When viewed from the lake or the day-use area, Locust Mountain seems to drop right into the southern side of Tuscarora Lake. The scenic picnic area plays host to many day trips and family reunions and the lake is a popular fishing spot. The 1,618-acre park is home to the park office and visitor center for Tuscarora and Locust Lake state parks. Visitors are welcome to gather information about the parks, the environmental education program and local attractions.
Picnicking: Over Over 250 picnic tables are available year-round. Two 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. Modern restrooms are available April through October.
Make a reservation.
Swimming: The sand beach is open from late-May to mid-September, 8 a.m. to sunset. Swim at your own risk. Please read and follow posted rules for swimming. Swimming areas are marked with buoys and have a maximum depth of 5 1/2 feet.
Snack Bar: Lakeside Concessions opens May 21 and is open daily 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Birthday parties are available. Contact Bill Sears, 570-467-2301, e-mail: lakesideconcessions(a)comcast.net
Boating: electric motors only The 96-acre Tuscarora Lake has a boat launch and boat mooring. The 125 seasonal boat mooring spaces and 20 canoe racks are available April 1 through October 31. A state park mooring permit can be purchased at the park office.
A boat rental near the beach is open daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day (weekends during Spring and Fall). Rowboats, canoes and specialty craft, like pedal boats and kayaks, are available for rent on an hourly or daily basis.
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 96-acre Tuscarora Lake is a warm-water fishery. Popular species are bass, muskellunge, pickerel, catfish, yellow perch and sunfish. Night fishing is permitted. There is an ADA accessible fishing pier at the boat launch.
Complete information on fishing rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.
Hunting and Firearms: About 1,100 acres of Tuscarora State Park are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, pheasant, rabbit, squirrel, turkey, grouse and dove. Special regulations areas allowing only bow and arrow and flintlock muzzleloader hunting are located by the park entrance of Tuscarora.
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. 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 trails wander through several habitats like mature deciduous forest, meadow and agricultural fields.
Crow Trail: 1.4 miles, easiest hiking, yellow blazes
Forest Edge Trail: 0.4 mile, easiest hiking
Lake View Trail: 0.6 mile, easiest hiking, yellow blazes
A 5.5-mile loop around Tuscarora Lake can be made by hiking Lake View, Spirit of Tuscarora and Crow trails.
Laurel Trail: 0.4 mile, easiest hiking
Locust Mountain Trail: 0.4 mile, more difficult hiking
Old Log Trail: 0.3 mile, easiest hiking
Spirit of Tuscarora Trail: 4.5 miles, more difficult hiking; red, white and yellow blazes
Camping Cottages: Six cottages sleep five people in bunk beds, and have windows, porch, picnic table, fire ring, and electric heat, lights and outlets. Cottages are available the Friday before the regional opening day of trout season until mid-October. A showerhouse is nearby. Pets are prohibited in the cottage area and overnight parking lots.
Make a reservation.
Yurts: These round, canvas and wood walled tents sleep five people in bunk beds, and have a refrigerator, four-burner electric range, microwave oven, countertop and oak cabinetry, kitchen table and chairs, wall mounted fan, skylight, vented roof, two windows, wood flooring, large deck, picnic table and fire ring, and electric heat, lights and outlets. The four yurts are available the Friday before the regional opening day of trout season until mid-October. A showerhouse is nearby. Pets are prohibited in the yurt area and overnight parking lots.
Make a reservation.
Explore the Winter Report for the current snow and ice depths.
Ice Fishing: Ice fishing is permitted during the winter season with trout being the primary species caught. The ice is not monitored for safety. Be sure that the ice is at least four inches thick and carry safety equipment.
Ice Skating: Ice skating is permitted on the lake as natural conditions permit.
Environmental Education and Interpretation
Tuscarora and Locust Lake state parks offer a wide variety of environmental education, recreational and interpretive programs. Through hands-on activities, guided walks and evening programs, participants gain appreciation, understanding and develop a sense of stewardship toward natural and cultural resources.
Curriculum-based environmental education programs are available to schools and youth groups. An environmental education specialist is available to develop EE curriculums and provide teacher workshops and additional teacher and community services. Group programs must be arranged in advance and may be scheduled by calling the park office.
Programs are offered March to November. For more detailed information, contact the park office.
Explore the Calendar of Events for a listing of events from today forward.
Explore environmental education and interpretation for more information.
Wind Turbine: The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) installed small-scale wind turbines to show how alternative energy can reduce pollution and lessen our dependence on fossil fuels.
For hundreds of years, traditional windmills harnessed wind energy to pump water or grind grain. Today's modern equivalent – the wind turbine – uses wind energy to generate electricity which has far less impact on the environment than energy generation based on fossil fuels.
To see how much energy is generated by the park's small-scale wind turbine, and how much energy is used daily, weekly and monthly visit the wind turbine page.
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.