Tuscarora State Park, It's Got A Lot More Than Just Swimming

Tuscarora State Park, It's Got A Lot More Than Just Swimming

Tuscarora State Park  (18 of 43)
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            <![CDATA[I wanted to explore some more of our natural areas here in Northeastern Pennsylvania and decided to visit a State park, one I have not visited in many years, and which I never hiked before.<a href="https://www.keepyoureyespeeled.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Tuscarora-State-Park-42-of-43.jpg"><img class="alignnone size-medium wp-image-11264" src="https://www.keepyoureyespeeled.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Tuscarora-State-Park-42-of-43-300x200.jpg" alt="Tuscarora State Park  (42 of 43)" width="300" height="200" /></a>

I do not think I have  been to Tuscarora State Park  (for you new readers the red highlighted words  are link to other websites with additional information or photographs)  since I was in high school. I would swim here with friends and recall picnicking here once with my family. So for me, this park, located about 17 miles from my home in Hazle Township, was only a place to swim and have cookouts. Well I learned something  new today, it is also a wonderful natural area with some great hiking trails. Tuscarora State Park  (37 of 43)

It was cloudy when I started out on the Spirit of Tuscarora trail at the far western end of the parking lots. The trail immediately climbed slightly upward above Tuscarora lake. It was wide and well maintained, in fact, I ran into it’s maintainence man and creator, “Pap”.  Pap was trimming the undergrowth along the trail and stopped to give me a very  detailed history of the trail and some it;s highlights.  Tuscarora State Park  (1 of 43)

After a nice chat about the local flora and fauna I proceeded along the yellow trail  under  ancient pine, hemlock, oak and yellow birch tree. I came across a number of tiny frogs, which Pap later identified as a young american or wood toad  . I found a mature on later on my hike. Tuscarora State Park American toad 108 (1 of 1)

I took the white blazed trail to the Locust Creek. There were a number of wooden walkways and a bridge over the creek. And after crossing the first wooden walkway I came upon the “Spirit Tree” which the trail was named after. Pap named the old tree since it resembled a human face. Tuscarora State Park  (18 of 43)

I than continued through more old forest and thick rhododendron woods. I heard a lot of birds in the trees above but didn’t get to see many. I then took the red blazed trail down to a meadow area along the Locust Creek. The trail was lined with flowering wild roses and other wildflowers such as milkweed that are not yet in bloom. I was told it is beautiful in August when they are in full bloom.

I stopped along the creek for a rest. So peaceful listening to the flowing waters. Thus is a Youtube link to a video I  uploaded.. https://youtu.be/ZQYOB_kdtD0

The trail than headed back up a steep and steady incline. I passed some beautiful varnish shelf mushrooms growing on a hemlock tree. These mushrooms are used by artists and may have some medicinal uses as well. The recent rains we have been getting have the mushrooms growing and I saw a few species including some edible ones. Tuscarora State Park  (15 of 43)

The trail looped after rejoining the white trail to create a figure eight and then reconnected with the yellow trail which headed back to the parking area. I ran into Pap again  and we walked down to his canoe together, exchanging stories of our mutual life long love of nature and it’s many wonders and the woods of northeastern Pennsylvania. I learned a lot from Pap and from my hike on the Spirit if Tuscarora Trail Tuscarora Park is far more than a place to swim or picnic. It has s0me beautiful forests and great, well maintained hiking trails. I didn’t even get to the trails on the other side of the lake. But I will be back. Tuscarora State Park  (4 of 43)

This is a link to more photographs of the beautiful Spirit of Tuscarora trail. https://www.keepyoureyespeeled.net/photographs-5/nggallery/blog-photos/tuscarora-state-park-june-13-2015


“One may lack words to express the impact of beauty but no one who hasTuscarora State Park  (33 of 43) felt it remains untouched. It is renewal, enlargement, intensification. The parks preserve it permanently in the inheritance of the American citizens.”
Bernard DeVoto]]>


  1. charles Karchner on June 13, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    Nice presentation. You are becoming a proficient presentation technologist Frank.

    There is much much through the lower hard coal regions that offer much surprise.

    Start in Tamaqua and work the valley West. My mother’s roots extend through many of their same values we endear.

    From Jim Thorpe and lake trails through the blue mountains to a lot of unseen naturl beauty.

    It is rewarding you are offering our brothers and sisters in companionship your love of conservation.

    Start an investigation into coal and work out all the unforseen treasures we share locally.

    Railroads and Coal. Our home front is rapidly changing to include many who wanna but do not understand.

    Well . Your it. So keep up . You are being watched,” like a hawk “.

    • fskokoski@gmail.com on June 27, 2015 at 7:25 pm

      Thanks Charles there is so much too see in our area, so much history and natural beauty, there is just no time to see it all. I’m doing the best i can.