PA §4: PA-309 to Port Clinton

Pennsylvania §4 spans 26.7 miles. Parking is available for nine mileposts.

Mp 0.0/26.7: PA-309 [West Penn Pike] in Game Lands lot

Locate: {40.70780, -75.80772}

Orient: The AT crosses PA-309 in Andreas at Blue Mountain Summit 2.9 mi southeast of PA-895 [Summer Valley Road, Lizard Creek Road] and 4.8 mi northwest of PA-143 [Decatur Street] in New Tripoli. From I-78/US-22 at exit 49 in Allentown: follow PA-100 N for 8.4 mi to left onto PA-309; follow PA-309 for 7.4 mi to right onto SGL road; continue briefly on road to left into lot. The SGL road is not explicitly signed. Look for the AT sign marking the crossing on the north side of PA-309, then make immediate right after passing sign.

Park: Room for a couple-dozen cars in SGL lot near terminus of service road catty-corner (SW to NE) to Blue Mountain Summit Restaurant. There is an AT sign on north side of road, just east of driveway.

Connect: Follow blue-blazed connector path east for 20 yd to AT. For AT northbound, turn left. For AT southbound, turn right.

Mp 0.0/26.7: PA-309 [West Penn Pike] in restaurant's lot

Locate: {40.70715, -75.80845}

Orient: See Mp 0.0/26.7, above. The AT crosses PA-309 adjacent to Blue Mountain Summit Restaurant, where hikers are permitted to park.

Park: Room for dozens of cars in the parking lot of Blue Mountain Summit Restaurant, on the south side of PA-309. Use east end of lot, adjacent to AT, catty-corner (NE to SW) to service road above.

Mp 2.2/24.5: Fort Franklin Mountain Road

Locate: {40.69440, -75.84204}

Orient: The AT crosses Fort Franklin Road 1.4 mi southeast of Blue Mountain Drive. The road's name looks to become Blue Mountain House Road southwest of the crossing. The crossing is 0.7 mi northeast of where Blue Mountain House Road, PA-748, Leaser Road, and Springhouse Road meet.

Park: Small parking area just northwest of crossing, on west side of road.

Mp 11.5/15.2: Hawk Mountain Road

Locate: {40.63381, -75.96079}

Orient: The AT crosses Hawk Mountain Road 3.4 mi southeast of PA-895 [Summer Valley Road] and 5.3 mi northwest of PA-143. There is an AT sign marking the northbound footpath from the road. (Hawk Mountain Sanctuary is 1.5 mi northwest.)

Park: Roadside parking in gravel and grass shoulders straddling crossing on both north and south sides of road; looks to accommodate a dozen-plus cars.

Mp 12.4/14.3: via connector trail from Pine Swamp Road

Locate: {40.62553, -75.95346}

Orient: Pine Swamp Road branches south from Hawk Mountain Road 3.8 mi southeast of PA-895 [Summer Valley Road] and 4.9 mi northwest of PA-143. At this T-intersection, there is a sign for State Game Lands 2 signaling the turn. Follow Pine Swamp Road for 0.5 mi to right onto dirt drive, and continue about 400 ft into parking area. Pine Swamp Road also meets Hawk Mountain Road 5.1 mi southeast of PA-895 and 3.6 mi northwest of PA-143. From this intersection, follow Pine Swamp Road for 1.7 mi to left into lot. Pine Swamp road is well-paved but narrow (at least from the first intersection above).

Park: Park in large State Game Lands lot.

Connect: From behind gate, follow forest road for 0.4 mi to AT {40.62371, -75.95879}. For AT northbound, turn right onto footpath. For AT southbound, continue ahead on forest road.

Mp 17.2/9.5: via yellow trail from Blue Rocks Campground

Locate: {40.59000, -75.90895}

Orient: From I-78 exit 35: follow PA-143 N for 0.7 mi to left onto Mountain Road; follow Mountain Road for 0.1 mi to right onto Blue Rocks Road; follow Blue Rocks Road for 0.7 mi to right onto Sousley Road; continue on Sousley Road for 0.2 mi to left into campground.

Park: Private Blue Rocks Campground allows hiker parking in their lot for a small fee ($3?); register in office. Trails leave from inside campground; get map from office.

Connect: Follow yellow-blazed Pinnacle Trail {40.59148, -75.91479}(?) for 1.3 mi to AT {40.60821, -75.91769}. For AT northbound, turn right. For AT southbound, turn left.

Mp 19.5/7.2: via blue trail from Blue Rocks Campground

Locate: {40.59000, -75.90895}

Park: See Mp 17.2/9.5 for parking at Blue Rocks Campground.

Connect: Follow blue-blazed Pulpit Rocks Trail {40.59148, -75.91479}(?) for 1.3 mi to AT {40.59719, -75.92752}. For AT northbound, turn right. For AT southbound, turn left.

Mp 20.8/5.9: via Reservoir Road

Locate: {40.58322, -75.94191}

Orient: From I-78 exit 35: follow PA-143 N for 0.7 mi to left onto Mountain Road; follow Mountain Road for 2.9 mi to right onto Reservoir Road; continue on Reservoir Road for 0.4 mi to parking on left, before gate.

Park: Huge lot with room for several-dozen cars; even so, the lot fills on clement weekends. Overflow parking is permitted in grass shoulder along Reservoir Road into lot area.

Connect: Follow blue-blazed service road (Reservoir Road) from behind gate for 0.4 mi to AT, where road makes a sharp right turn; look for wooden signs on grass. For AT northbound, continue on road around bend. For AT southbound, turn left onto grassy footpath and subsequently bear left onto ungated prong at fork.

Mp 26.4/0.3: via path from PA-61 [Centre Street]

Locate: {40.57840, -76.02390}

Orient: At Port Clinton, there is a small hiker lot on the right (west) side of PA-61 S, 0.1 mi south of Broad Street and 2 mi north of I-78 at exit 29. Via PA-61 N, use the dedicated left-turn lane onto Broad Street, whence you can find a place to turn around for PA-61 S.

Park: Room for about 8 cars in lot; signed for "AT Parking". Additional parking for another 8 cars or so looks possible on berm adjacent to lot.

Connect: Follow blue-blazed path from back of lot for 100 yd to AT {40.57893, -76.0249}. The path goes over stone steps in a steep embankment. On reaching old railroad grade at foot of embankment, turn right and continue a few yards to junction with AT; look for white blaze to left. For AT northbound, turn left onto footpath—heading south. For AT southbound, continue ahead towards gate at Penn Street—heading north.

Mp 26.7/0.0: South Street

Locate: {40.57933, -76.02757}

Orient: In Port Clinton, §4 and §5 meet on the pedestrian walkway along the Railroad Boulevard bridge over the Schuylkill River. Nearby parking is permitted at the town's baseball field on South Street. From I-78/US-22 at exit 29: follow PA-61 north for 2.2 mi to left onto Broad Street into Port Clinton; follow Broad Street for 0.2 mi to left onto South Street into ball field—look for large sign on right side of Broad Street directing visitors to parking area.

Park: Room for a dozen cars on grass along outfield fence. Perhaps be wary of parking near field during practices or games. Alternatively, there is room for several cars along north shoulder of Broad Street just beyond intersection with South Street.

Connect: From intersection of Broad Street and South Street: head east for a few yards to AT {40.579986, -76.026663} at Railroad Boulevard, on right. For AT northbound, continue on Broad Street towards bridge over Little Schuylkill River and turn right onto Penn Street beyond. For AT southbound, turn right onto Railroad Boulevard towards bridge over Schuylkill River and continue into train yard.