Hiking The French Creek State Park
The 3rd most popular hiking trail in Pennsylvania.
Monday 18 July 2016 01:56 GMT
Located just west of Philadelphia, the east half of the French Creek State Park has more than 30 miles of well marked hiking trails in the parks 7339 acres. Turtle Trail, Mill Creek Trail, Racoon Trail and Buzzard Trail. From Elverson, take SR23 east 4 miles to SR 345 north. South entrance to park is 3 miles north on SR 345.
Boone Trail: (blue blaze - 6 miles - moderate hiking) This loop trail connects all major attractions of French Creek, making it an excellent route to see the park. Start your trip at Hopewell Lake Boat Launch parking lot, Group Tenting Areas 13-18, Campground Contact Station, or Hopewell Furnace Visitor Center (using connector trails). Several portions are steep and rocky, so wear sturdy shoes. It is closed to bikes around Hopewell Lake.
Buzzards Trail: (yellow blaze with red stripe - 3 miles - moderate hiking) Branching off of Raccoon Trail and Mill Creek Trail, this trail passes through the Baptism Creek drainage area in the eastern portion of the park.
Horse-shoe Trail: (yellow blaze - 8 miles - moderate hiking) For hikers and horseback riders, this trail touches highlights of the park including Hopewell Lake and Scotts Run Lake. The Horse-shoe Trail runs 130 miles from Valley Forge to the Appalachian Trail near Harrisburg. This is the only equestrian trail in the park.
Kalmia Trail: (purple blaze -1 mile - moderate hiking) This mountainside trail provides a pleasant experience through mature forests with scattered mountain laurel. Kalmia is the Latin word for laurel. Biking is prohibited.
Lenape Trail: (green blaze - 5.5 miles - moderate hiking) Begin this hike from the Campground Contact Station, Scotts Run Lake, Hopewell Furnace Visitor Center, or Route 345/Shed Road. Follow the solid green blazes to stay on the Lenape Trail or venture off onto one of the many blazed trails that intersect this enjoyable trail.
Mill Creek Trail: (white blaze with a red stripe - 6 miles - difficult hiking) Once leaving the trailhead at Shed Road and Route 345, you will not cross another road on this back country-type loop trail. Be sure to carry water and wear proper clothing and footwear. Consider using the Raccoon and Lenape trails to add some variety for your return trip.
Raccoon Trail: (red blaze - 1.7 miles - moderate hiking) This trail serves as the most direct route into and out of the eastern portion of French Creek State Park. It starts .25-mile east of Hopewell Furnaces main gate and ends at Mill Creek.
Six Penny Trail: (orange blaze - 3 miles - moderate hiking) Use the connector trail (orange blazes with a green stripe) from the campground contact station to get to this loop trail. Most of this trail is closed to bikes.
Turtle Trail: (white blaze - 3.6 miles - moderate hiking) Circling through the western portion of French Creek, this trail offers a variety of easy hiking mixed with several challenging sections. Park at the base of the road leading to the Firetower Picnic Area and follow the white blazes in either direction.
Overall, French Creek State Park is the 3rd most popular hiking trail of all 30 hikes in Pennsylvania. Several of the better hiking trails are nearby French Creek State Park including Wissahickon Valley and Horse-Shoe Trail.