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  1. #1
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    New question here. Good Riding near State College?

    Hey all,

    Looking to head down to the State College area for some riding during our Canada Day weekend (June 27th-30th)

    We rode there last year and had a blast riding in Roth Rock and Greenwood Furnace. We plan to ride a big loop on the Saturday, the Imba loop we did last time we came. Are there any suggestions for some sweet riding comparable to Roth Rock in the area? Within an hour or two of State College?

    We’re looking for something decent that we can ride all day…

    Thanks in advance,
    phil shep

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  2. #2
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    there is some good riding up in Moshanon State Forest, just north of State College. It doesnt see as much traffic as Rothrock and we don't really have any good trail maps on the site. There is a big loop we do that incorporates a bunch of the Allegheny Front trail, but theres one section that you really want to skip and that involves a bit of a local bushwack. Im not the expert on the route so Ill see if I can get a simplified version and PM ya with it or email me at mtbiker11@juno.com.
    Theres also some OK riding down at RB Winter State Park in Bald Eagle Forest, but the single track tends to be a bit over grown. Not sure if you did any riding in Shingletown, well I guess you would have done a little if you did the R3 Epic, but theres more good riding in there. You could combine that with an up and down ride doing Croyle, Wild Cat Gap and Old Laurel Run rd trail if you want an all day afair. Theres actually gonna be a few people up from eastern PA riding with me that weekend if your timing works out, you could tag along for a local guided ride or two.

  3. #3
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    yeah, what he said, except plus the following.

    if you're willing to travel 2 hours i'd recommend checking out Rattling Creek and Laurel Highlands.

    rcst1.org
    lhorba.org

  4. #4
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    i suggest rothrock, theres tons of trails there. i suggest up the road to the right. 3 bridges to longberger to tussey ridge.

    scotia state forrest is f'in sweet. get a trail map from the bicycle shop in town and shred there

  5. #5
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    thanks all!

    We rode the R3 last year, kind of. We parked at shingletown, climbed up and basically rode the loop. I think we can add those trails to our loop to make it a super epic!

    I will check out Scotia State Forest... can't find anything online. Is it 'Scotia Barrens'?

    We did Laurel Highlands last year, looking for something new and cool! Doesn't look like much trail at Rattling Creek, am I mistaken?

    Thanks!!
    phil shep

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  6. #6
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    there's plenty of trail at RC, something like 20+ miles of ST plus alot more jeep trail. if you mix it up nice you can have quite a long day of riding.

  7. #7
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    the rattling creek stuff is about a 23 mile loop if you do everything, and I would agree its worth the drive from State College if you are looking for something new. As far as Scotia goes, its not a state forest, its actually gamelands and although its fun to ride, there is no real map for the trails and nothing is marked so its really tough to navigate without a local that knows it well.

  8. #8
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    Blue Knob State Park would also be a good option for you, a bit less than two hours from state college. lots of climbing but lots of good stuff

  9. #9
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    right on, I love climbing!

    Is Blue Knob fairly technical / rocky?

    What about the Eagleton Mine Camp Trail? Worth it? It would be on our way back home...

    thanks!
    phil shep

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  10. #10
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    I have to say that RB Winter trails are in great condition. We have done a lot of work out there in the past months removing overgrowth, deadfall, etc.

    If you want an all day ride, take a look at the race loop(s) from the recent Rocktober marathon held in May.

    http://www.highspeedcycling.com/rocktober_course.html

  11. #11
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    Blue knob has it all really, some great techy rock stuff near the top on and around the lookout trail, past fun downhill stuff, and then some big, at least for east coast, climbs back up, over 1000 feet.
    Last I heard was that eaglton mine camp was pretty overgrown, although I have not been up there to ride it, from everything ive heard, the other stuff mentioned is better.
    http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/statepar.../blueknob.aspx
    is link with a link on it to a trail map for blue knob. there is also some single track on the resort side of the mountain but at this point there really is not a map and its a bit hard to follow. I do actually have a GPS of it if you have one and wanted to try and follow it that way. its another 9 miles or so of trail

  12. #12
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    Thanks nmba... I have a Garmin Edge so that would work out great. Are you on motionbased?

    I've been doing a little searching and it looks like 'Lost Turkey' trail is a good way up, followed by 'Mountain View'

    Is there a shop or anything near there where we can get a good loop recommendation for an all day adventure? Or can you anyone recommend a good route?

    cheers,
    phil shep

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  13. #13
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    I kind of can't believe that Don and Kevin didn't suggest that you missed some of the best stuff by doing the R3, and although all their alternates are good options, you don't really need to leave Rothrock to have multiple days of great riding with minimal overlap.
    9 years ago when we laid out the R3, it was a pretty sweet ride. now there is probably 4 times the amount of trail available.

  14. #14
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    my bad, it was probably before noon or something.

  15. #15
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    Can I get a description over here? :)

    Hey...I really appreciate all the suggestions for long rides, and places to go to find them.

    As an 'out-of-towner' listening in and planning such a trip as well, I'd really appreciate a bit more of a detailed description of what to expect at each location. I have tried to look around online at maps and such, but it's hard to find any kind of description of the trails.

    It would be nice to know things like...the must-ride sections at each network...the trail surface, conditions, level of maintenance etc...how scenic or how remote...the quality of the trail construction and routemarking...what breakdown of singletrack vs. doubletrack...the amount of climbing and the degree of difficulty...how technical, bumpy or challenging the trail is...that kind of thing.

    Basically, with limited days in the saddle on a trip to this area, what would be the top picks for truly memorable rides, and what would be the highlights to make sure to check out?

    Thanks a ton for all the info so far!

  16. #16
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    hey Frank,

    can you suggest a sweet 'epic' route that overlaps the R3 route?

    IIRC, last year, we started at the shingletown entrance, climbed the shingletown trail, crossed the road and did a hike-a-bike section (oops), came out and did a sweet downhill trail (Laurel Run?) down to the Three Bridges Trail, down Longebeger (sp?) trail, along Tussey Ridge, turned right, down a sweet downhill to the gaslines, rode over to John Wert, then rode back up the road, Longebeger in reverse, three bridges, climbed up the road and rode down shingletown downhill.

    We loved all the trails except for the hike-a-bike section. Any suggestions for to incorporate more sweet trails into this loop?

    Thanks!
    phil shep

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  17. #17
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    you definitely hit the highlights. you can avoid the hike-abike by climbing the road up and around to the top of old laurel run road trail. you could also do some more riding in shingletown gap on your way back if you still have gas, when you head back down into shingletown, take a right when you get to the grassy open area with an old chimney. follow that to a four way intersection and go left on Bald knob ridge trail. take that to the second left, Maguire trail, down that, cross the trail at the bottom and continue across the creek and up the other side taking the next right single track, charcoal flats. at the next "y" stay left and go straight at the next intersection. It gets a little confusing at the next junction but just stay to the right and head down the trail next to the drainage then find your way back across the creek to the main trail, you are at the bottom of shingletown

  18. #18
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    nice, thanks nmba!

    I heard of some other trails, Wildcat Gap or something? can we link it into that ride at all?

    Here is the route we took last year: http://trail.motionbased.com/trail/activity/3579495

    thanks
    phil shep

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  19. #19
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    you could link that in, but it would probably mean not going down Lonberger. I would also wait and do Old laurel run rd trail till the end. What you would want to do is after you do John wert, head towards Lonberger but go all the way up North Meadows road. Go right on Gettis ridge road then right on Bear Gap road. you go down that about a 1/4 mile to a really nice wide open lookout. Wild cat Gap trail starts on the left hand side of that lookout. its pretty steep in spots, steeper than old laurel run rd trail. at the bottom follow the camp road down to Laurel Run Road, right on laurel run road then at the top take the right that goes out towards the radio tower, old laurel run rd trail is on that road. then at the bottom just climb back up laurel run rd to shingletown.

  20. #20
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    Thanks again,

    just looking at the map... is it possible to climb up Spruce Gap trail? And also, instead of turning left onto Maguire, it looks like you can continue on and come down some switchbacks... any good?

    thanks
    phil shep

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  21. #21
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    up spruce gap would be a MAJOR hike a bike, we usually even avoid going down it as part of it is quite steep and loose. but that said, people have done sillier things, just don't say i didn't warn you. as far as continuing down that ridge in shingletown, yup its possible, theres some big rock formations that will probably require a bit of bike portage unless you are one heck of a trials rider. the down hill there is actually, in my opinion in better shape than maguire. you can also find you way up to charcoal flats from there as well, its just a little harder to find the trail, but as you are standing on the main "lower" trail with your back to the trail you just came down, the other trail is to your right a bit across the creek, look for the blue blazes going up the other side. or just head down the lower trail

  22. #22
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    Trail maps

    Hey...just thought I would post back here with a good resource.

    There are a ton of trail maps and lots of other detailed descriptions and directions to trailheads at this link, huge list:
    http://www.pa-conservation.org/bike.html

    Most of the URL's for the maps are badly formed on this page (as of June 2008) so they don't currently work when you click them.

    Here's what I figured out. If you just remove the ".../Hiking_backpacking/..." portion of the map/brochure/info link and they all seem to work just fine.

    So for example, clicking on the "Blue Knob" trail map link opens a new window at "http://www.pa-conservation.org/Hiking_backpacking/Blue%20Knob.PDF"
    and unfortunately, produces a 'file-not-found" error.

    To get to the map for real, in the browser address bar, we delete the aforementioned part of the server file tree and use:
    "http://www.pa-conservation.org/Blue%20Knob.PDF"

    ...and the map downloads and opens. A bit involved, but there is a seemingly exhaustive list of trails and tons of good info all in one place there at that page.

    Cheers.

  23. #23
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    I think by good resource you meant to say a resource with good intentions. There is nothing on that page remotely close to descriptive of what is near State College and from personal knowledge, it seems that its pretty lacking on other areas of the state. Perhaps for Hiking it is half way decent, but even that there are huge gaps. Sorry, but I wouldn't bother with the rig-a-ma-role of going through the broken links, it wouldn't yield any gems.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnwfrank
    I think by good resource you meant to say a resource with good intentions. There is nothing on that page remotely close to descriptive of what is near State College and from personal knowledge, it seems that its pretty lacking on other areas of the state. Perhaps for Hiking it is half way decent, but even that there are huge gaps. Sorry, but I wouldn't bother with the rig-a-ma-role of going through the broken links, it wouldn't yield any gems.
    Huh?

    For example, with the "Blue Knob" trail, we get an approximately 1200 word brochure which includes 10 photos, information on the terrain, a laundry list of trails in the network including where they go and what they are like distances and special features, a list of contact phone numbers for information or help, a map on how to reach the area and so on (flora, fauna, campgrounds, history...). As well, there is another link with a topographical map showing trails as well.

    Maybe you could constructively enlighten us from your "personal knowledge"...what is still missing from that information resource?

  25. #25
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    well, hell is chilly, as i'm about to post in support of ol frances here.

    from what i can tell of that resource, this is as close as you get to ANYTHING near state college. i didn't even see the word ROTHROCK anywhere on the page:

    Penn-Roosevelt Trail system includes:
    Mid-State Trail
    Tioga State Forest Trails
    Greenwood Furnace Park not available Many trails are on nearby state forest land. not available Penn.PDF
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    penn_map.pdf

    now, that's a fair bit of data. i mean, maybe 30 words in there. but you've got the links. however, none of it mentions the following:

    singletown, laurel, tussey, wert, detweiller, croyle, lonberger, sassafras, ruff, ross, wildcat, etc.

    so i will agree wholeheartedly and support the man in saying that the resource, while well intentioned is rather inadequate.

    as an admitted "out-of-towner" one would do well not to accost the locals who have put in thousands of hours working on the trails. and probably millions riding them.

    simply put, it's our backyard. so please don't think to question us when we KINDLY say it is not well represented.

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