Loyalsock Trail
Mile 0.00 to 3.00 Mile 43.27 to 46.11 Mile 3.00 to 4.81
Mile 4.81 to 9.10       Mile 9.10 to 13.53       Mile 13.53 to 15.45       Mile 15.45 to 18.25       Mile 18.25 to 22.08
Mile 22.08 to 25.24       Mile 25.24 to 28.42       Mile 28.42 to 30.57       Mile 30.57 to 34.54       Mile 34.54 to 39.59
Mile 39.59 to 43.27       Mile 46.11 to 49.25       Mile 49.25 to 53.60       Mile 53.60 to 56.00       Mile 56.00 to 59.28

Revised November 25, 2003

Mile 43.27 to 46.11, hiked east to west returning via RX-6, May 25, 1992
Mile 43.27 to 46.11, hiked west to east continuing from Double Run Road, April 7, 1997
Mile 43.27 to 46.11, hiked west to east continuing from Double Run Road, October 6, 2002
World's End State Park to Canyon Vista
Our 1st Hike

On our first Memorial Day weekend living in Pennsylvania, we drove up north to begin hiking the Loyalsock Trail. Unsure where to find it, we drove up PA Route 87 from Montoursville figuring that the LT could be found near Loyalsock Creek which followed the road. 30 miles later, we were in Forksville, still following the creek but having seen no sign of the trail. (It took us many trips up Route 87 before we learned how to find the trailhead at mile 0.0) We turned right on PA Route 154 and reached World's End State Park in about two miles.

We knew the trail ran through the park, and when we stopped at the park office, there were trail markers right outside it. Purchasing a copy of the LT trail guide allowed us to determine that we were at mile 45.96 and that hiking across Route 154 would take us east to west in the direction of Canyon Vista.

After crossing Route 154, the LT rises 280 ft in about 1/3 mile to World's End Vista where it intersects the World's End trail maintained by the park. Following that trail bypasses nearly eight miles of the LT in the Canyon Vista and Double Run areas and returns to the LT in about three miles, at LT mile 37.77. We stayed on the LT, and were relieved when it flattened out while following an old woods road.

As we approached Double Run Road, the LT descended, crossed the road, and continued to descend to the West and East Branches of Double Run. From a high point of 1460 ft, we dropped 300 ft in just under 1/2 mile, crossed bridges shared with the Red X and Double Run trails, then began to climb again.

In about 1/3 mile, we regained nearly all the elevation we had lost. This was followed by about 1/2 mile of flat hiking, and then, one of the most difficult uphill climbs we encountered on the LT -- how fitting that we did it the first hike.

From mile 43.84 to 43.70, the trail climbs 240 ft up an old lumber drag in about 1/7 mile. We had to grab branches, logs, rocks, or anything that would allow us to pull ourselves upward. After reaching Cold Run Road at mile 43.70, the ascent became more gradual to a high point for the day's hike of 1800 ft near the intersection of RX-6 at 43.47 in the vicinity of some interesting rock formations including one named "Suicide Drop."

The remainder of the hike was virtually all downhill. We reached Canyon Vista, one of the more crowded areas along the trail because it is accessible by car, enjoyed the view and a lunch we had packed, then began our return trip via the Red X and Double Run trails. This route was substantially shorter than the LT had been. As we repeatedly observed during our LT hikes, the trail intentionally follows a convoluted route to incorporate points of interest but even more so, to provide a challenging hiking experience with numerous elevation changes, some extremely steep. In other words, the LT goes out of its way to climb hills merely "because they are there."

The downhill stretch was no bargain either! The other trails didn't have the extremely steep segments of the main LT, but once we began following Double Run, they picked their way over huge boulders as we traversed along a series of waterfalls. We rejoined the main LT at mile 46.11, near Loyalsock Creek at the state park. 

When Mike and Maria repeated this segment as part of a hike from Double Run Road to World's End State Park in April, 1997, it was the first long hike the two of them had done by themselves.  Aimee dropped them off at the LT crossing of Double Run Road at mile 39.59, then Mike carried Maria in the backpack for 6 1/2 miles, with one stop at Canyon Vista for a lunch break and to let Maria stretch her legs.

By 2002, Maria was big enough to do that same entire hike on her own two feet, for 6 1/2 miles.  It was the longest hike she had ever done at that point.  Although we did it one-way in the downhill direction, it was by no means an easy hike because of the steep elevation changes.

Footnote: After completing the entire LT in November, 1996, Mike insisted on taking Maria over the segments he and Aimee had hiked before Maria came on the scene. Aimee was less excited about the idea, so they compromised. Mike agreed Aimee did not have to hike with Maria and him -- after all, she'd already finished the trail -- and Aimee agreed to let Mike redo the segments hiked before Maria was conceived, but not the ones they'd hiked while Aimee was pregnant -- after all, she'd carried Maria on those segments, just not in the backpack like Mike did after Maria was born. Mike and Maria hiked this segment as part of a one-way hike from mile 39.59 to 45.96 during April, 1997.

Our journey begins
Above: Aimee at mile 46, May 25, 1992, near the World's End State Park office where we began hiking the LT.
Below: Aimee crossing the foot bridge at West Branch Double Run, mile 44.61. The bridge is shared by RX-6 and Double Run trail. The photo does not convey the uneasy nature of this bridge which tilted and leaned as we crossed it in 1992.

Crossing Double Run bridge
Right:  The condition of the bridge over East Branch Double Run seems much better than its "twin" above.  In October, 2002, Maria and Mike hiked 6 1/2 miles of the LT including this segment.  By this time, the former West Branch bridge seems to have been replaced by a narrow log.

Below left:  About 2/10 mile before reaching Canyon Vista, near the high elevation point of our 1992 hike at about 1800 ft, we hiked past some unusual rock formations. The rock wall here is actually opposite Suicide Drop at mile 43.46.
Maria crossing footbridge at mile 44.61
Mike near Suicide Drop
Below right:  Yes, you can reach Canyon Vista by car over one-way gravel roads in 5 minutes or so, but it's not the same as hiking the 2.7 mile segment of the LT from the park office. As the crow flies, it's less than a mile to the park office.
Canyon Vista

Left:  When Maria and Mike reached Canyon Vista on their 2002 hike, they were about halfway through the 6 1/2 miles from Double Run Road to World's End State Park. Maria completed the entire hike on her own two feet, making it the longest hike she'd even done on her own feet at the age of just over seven.

Below:  A much younger Maria first stopped at Canyon Vista in 1997 when she was 21 months old.  Mike carried her in the backpack for the entire 6 1/2 mile hike, but he let her out for a few minutes when they stopped for lunch.  Just looking at the way she climbed on the boulders, you could tell even then that she would grow up to be a terrific hiker!
Below:  In another scene from the same 1997 trip, Maria is standing in the vicinity of Canyon Vista, drinking from her "sippy cup."  Approaching just behind her are a group of people on horseback.  Maria greatly enjoyed seeing the horses.
21-month-old Maria at lunch break at Canyon Vista

Maria with horses in background
Waterfalls on Double Run Returning from Canyon Vista to the park, we followed Red X Trail RX-6 and Double Run nature trail. These paralleled Double Run, a small tributary of Loyalsock Creek, for about 1/2 mile through a series of waterfalls.

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