Good Life

Walks in Penn’s Woods are happening around the state this weekend. Join in at Musser Gap

ClearWater Conservancy’s Centred Outdoors program will head to Musser Gap Sunday for its final hike of the year. The free guided adventure is part of the statewide Walk In Penn’s Woods, an event that encourages people from across the Commonwealth to enjoy a day in the woods.

As part of the Walk in Penn’s Woods event, experts will be stationed along the two mile loop providing demonstrations, informative session, and hands-on learning opportunities. Attendees can expect to learn about map reading skills, forest fungi, birding, tree identification and more, while enjoying the arboreous beauty of Rothrock State Forest.

In addition to representatives from ClearWater Conservancy and Centred Outdoors, instructors from the following organizations will be on-hand to share their expertise: Friends of Rothrock, SAF, Penn State Student Chapter, PA DCNR Bureau of Forestry, PSU Plant Pathology and Environmental Microbiology, Purple Lizard Maps, State College Birding Club, PA Game Commission, Penn State Forestlands Management Office, Ferguson Township Tree Commission and more.

Guests are invited to arrive any time between 1-4 p.m. Trail maps will be available showing the approximate location of the stations. The hike to the last station is about 1 mile, creating a two mile total hike if you choose to venture all the way to the last one. Each station will have instruction that lasts between 5-10 minutes and specialists are available to answer any questions guests might have in their particular subject areas. Guests are also welcome to explore Rothrock State Forest by continuing past the final station on their own.

If you are unable to attend Sunday’s event, Musser Gap offers a wide range of recreational opportunities all year long. Hiking, biking, horseback riding, hunting, fishing and bird watching are all popular activities. The area’s trail system provides ample opportunities for both day users and also those looking to connect to the interior trails of the expansive Rothrock State Forest.

Stay tuned for addition information on upcoming Centred Outdoors events including the annual “Night Before” New Years Eve Walk and the upcoming 2020 Centred Outdoors season.

Planning to attend this week’s adventure? Here’s what you need to know:

What: Centred Outdoors: Musser Gap

When: 1-4 p.m. Sunday

Where: Musser Gap Trail (off of Route 45), State College

Parking: Ample parking is available at the trailhead

What to bring:

  • A refillable water bottle

  • Sun protection including a hat and sunscreen

  • Sturdy and water-resistant footwear capable of walking on a forested path

  • Long pants and high socks may be preferred for additional protection from insects and ticks

  • A light snack or picnic, especially if you plan to come early or stay after the hike

  • Child carrier/backpack is recommended for very young children

  • Binoculars for bird and wildlife watchers

Difficulty of hike: Hike is approximately 2 miles long with moderate elevation change-making it difficult for some attendees.

Additional Information:

  • Pets must be kept on a leash and owners must clean up after their pets.

Jon Major is the communications strategist for ClearWater Conservancy.