The woods in Pennsylvania is a great place to hang out and hikers can always be found trekking their way up to the lookout called Flat Rock in Doubling Gap where the vast, verdant farmland of Cumberland Valley can be seen below.  This five mile hike is somewhat strenuous but well worth the effort.

Finding the park is easy.  From I-81 get off at the Newville Exit (Exit No. 37) and turn north.  This will put you on Rt. 233.  Stay on Rt. 233 for eleven miles.  Be looking for the Park Office sign (above) and turn off to the right.  Beyond the sign about 400 feet you will see another sign directing you to turn right (right).  At the bottom of the hill is parking.  Signs will direct you to the bridge where the trail starts.

  
Following the
red blazes, you will find that the first half mile leg of the trail is pretty easy uphill hiking. 









You will then come to a dirt road (Tuscarora Trail) where you will turn left.  In about an eighth of a mile you will come to some concrete structures.  Beyond this, hiking becomes serious with a sharper incline and lots of rocks underfoot.  This approximate half mile stretch is the most challenging part of the day.





 
    
    We found this large fallen tree
    across the trail in the summer
    of 2007 (left).




Soon you will come to where trails intersect with the Appalachian Trail, and you will be astonished when you read on a sign that you have just traveled only one mile (right).  Lets say it has been at least one and a half miles.  Cross over the AT and follow the
blue blazes on the Tuscarora Trail to Flat Rock.  It probably is about one more mile to the vista.

A few hundred feet ahead and to your left you will come upon an outhouse, and just beyond it you will see a shelter (left).  For the next half mile you will find that the hiking is easy, somewhat downhill.



















A wooden pathway over a wet area was built by Eagle Scouts in September, 2006 (left).

For the last half mile you will be hiking over nothing but rocks and at a moderately steep incline (right).  You will soon come upon the wide Cumberland Valley vista.



  


  
  All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.

The purple-headed mountain,
The river running by,
The sunset, and the morning,
That brightens up the sky;

He gave us eyes to see them,
And lips that we might tell,
How great is God Almighty,
Who has made all things well.

       Cecil Frances Alexander

  
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                                Here are two interesting signs posted along the way:

                                         
                                 
                                         

                                        Official Pennsylvania State Parks website
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                 Here are some other popular Pennsylvania hiking areas
  
         
     ► Hike Ricketts Glen where there are 22 waterfalls
   
         
     ► Try hiking Pine Creek Gorge, the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania
  
               ► Hiking Flat Rock gives you 5 miles of strenuous climbing & a great view
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                    You may find these hiking experiences a bit more interesting:

           Go on a 16.4 mile hike up Half Dome in the breathtaking Yosemite Valley
   
         
 Hiking the big island of Hawai'i allows you to see it's unique beauty up close
  
 
        ► Here is the most popular hike in the Mid-Atlantic region:  Old Rag, Virginia
   
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 Visits:  Hit Counter     Hiking Half Done, Yosemite Valley
              Photographs
2007, Elton D. Hannaman
              Contact: ehannaman@pa.net

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