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  1. #1
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    State College Area

    Making a road trip out from MI this weekend to the State College area and we are having trouble finding a place to camp. Looking to ride Rothrock, Tunnel Mountain and a few other rides plus get some flyfishing in. Does anyone have any ideas for finding a place to camp "off the beaten path"? Looking for some all-mountain type trails, not just strictly XC so any suggestions there would be welcome also. Just send me a PM if needed. Thanks.

    JT

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtstover
    Making a road trip out from MI this weekend to the State College area and we are having trouble finding a place to camp. Looking to ride Rothrock, Tunnel Mountain and a few other rides plus get some flyfishing in. Does anyone have any ideas for finding a place to camp "off the beaten path"? Looking for some all-mountain type trails, not just strictly XC so any suggestions there would be welcome also. Just send me a PM if needed. Thanks.

    JT
    You may want to check out the PA DCNR website for info on Penn-Roosevelt and Greenwood Furnance State Parks, both areas have camping available. I've never stayed at either so I couldn't comment on the camping. Two great resources for trails and rides in Rothrock are the Griz Guide to Rockrock and the Purple Lizard Rothrock map. I use both extensively when riding.

    I'm only a novice MTBer, but have ridden a bunch in Rothrock (especially in the area behind/around Tussey mountain) so I'll give you my $0.02 on the trails there. In general, I'd call it technical XC. Lots of rocks. Compared to other places I've ridden (Kingdom Trails, VT; Bootleg Canyon XC, NV; Blankets Creek and Big Creek trail systems in GA) the Rothrock trails are difficult. I'd rate Rothrock as "black diamond XC" compared to the other places I've ridden. There are a few steep techy climbs. Lots of rocks. A decent amount of climbing (sometimes on a road or fireroad) is required on almost every ride. Some of the trails run along a ridge and are relatively flat, but generally make up for that by having lots and lots rock gardens. Did I mention the rocks?

    IMO a full-suspension bike is most "comfortable" for riding this terrain, but there are locals on rigid single speeds that kill it. And the SS world championship was held here in 2005, so if you got the skills the trails are ridable on anything. You won't really find any huge chunky, DH trails, if that's what you're looking for as part of your all-mountain riding. There are a few cool, techy DH sections in the Shingletown Gap area, and there is always Spruce Gap Trail, "The EDGE", that is basically a loose and sketchy mile+ of sitting on your back tire. I'm less familiar with the trails in and around Greenwood furnace, but I've heard they're good.

    You should poke around on the NMBA website and maybe post on the forums over there. You could probably get some good advice and maybe even hook up with some knowledgable locals for a guided tour. There are suggested rides and some maps on there that are useful, as well. Also, any of the local State College shops listed on the resources page could probably steer you in the right direction.

    Hope that was helpful, good luck.
    Last edited by PCinSC; 05-23-2007 at 06:31 AM.

  3. #3
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    with regards to camping, both are good suggestions. greenwood furnace is at the edge of the state forest and has showers and hooks ups, electricity and water. theres also a nice swimming area etc. Penn Roosevelt is more in the middle of the riding and has more primitive camping. There are also good maps on the NMBA site although not all the trailheads are marked.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the info. We are looking for more rustic camping at Rothrock or wherever. I am hearing that we can camp pretty much anywhere in State Forest but we need to be 25 yards off the road......can anyone confirm this? I will try to NMBA website also. Thanks!!

  5. #5
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    that is true, I think there is also some setback from from any trail as well.
    http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/forestry/camping/index.aspx
    has all the particulars. the idea behind the type of camping you mention is more intended for backpacking, the rule about that is that you can only stay at a particular site for one night then you have to move on. There are more "rustic" pull off campsites in bald eagle state forest that you need to get a free permit for. It will also be a challenge to find a clear enough spot that is flat enough to pitch a tent "out in the wild" in that forest.

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