State Park Natural Areas

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is represented by this colored map.

Where to Visit Natural Areas

These parks have designated state park natural areas.


State parks contain some pretty outstanding natural resources, from the 300-year-old white pine and hemlock trees at Cook Forest to the gorge at Ricketts Glen with its 22 named waterfalls. For the first time in its more than 100-year history, the Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks has a designated natural areas program guaranteed to protect these areas of unique scenic, geologic or ecological value.

A Natural Area is an area within a state park of unique scenic, geologic or ecological value which
will be maintained in a natural condition by allowing physical and biological processes to operate,
usually without direct human intervention. These areas are set aside to provide locations for
scientific observation of natural systems, to protect examples of typical and unique plant and animal
communities and to protect outstanding examples of natural interest and beauty.