Damascus Township, PA – Do you enjoy hiking? Hiking is a wonderful recreational activity for individuals, small groups, and families. Have you heard of Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River’s Take a Hike! program? As a way to get people to enjoy the outdoors, Upper Delaware has partnered with the New York Department of Conservation, the Pennsylvania Game Lands, Sullivan County, NY, Boy Scouts of America, and Damascus Township, PA to create the Take A Hike! program which includes six local trails. Located just off River Road, and 0.6 miles up MacCubbins Road near Beach Lake, Pennsylvania, the Damascus Forest Trail is one of the trails included in the Take A Hike! brochure.
The Damascus Forest Trail is an easy two-mile loop trail in Damascus Township. This trail features a varied landscape of wetlands, old growth hemlock forest, uplands, and lowlands. This trail is good for all skill levels. Due to the forest setting, it is not uncommon to encounter downed trees across the path on this trail. This hemlock forest trail makes for an exciting world of discovery for family groups hiking with young adventurers. With its relatively flat terrain, it can be a perfect starter trail for younger hikers. Dogs are also permitted on this trail but must be kept on a leash. Taking a moment to admire the old growth hemlock trees encountered on this hike offer a tangible reminder of the virgin forests that once stood tall in the Upper Delaware River valley.
Upper Delaware’s “Take a Hike!” brochure highlights six local hikes and provides the names, locations, descriptions, and difficulty levels of trails in the Upper Delaware Valley. It also provides a checklist to keep track of the trails you’ve hiked which can be turned in upon completion at Upper Delaware’s park headquarters or the Zane Grey Museum as well as mailing to the park for the coveted “Take a Hike!” patch. Taking advantage of this local hiking program is a great way to get out and learn more about the beautiful natural resources of this region, whether you are visiting the area for the first time or are a lifelong resident who may not have ever know about these trails. This resource is available on the web at www.nps.gov/upde/planyourvisit/take-a-hike.htm or by calling (570) 685-4871 and asking a park ranger to put a copy in the mail for you.
When hiking the Damascus Forest Trail or any other trail it is always a good rule of thumb to be prepared by wearing sturdy shoes or hiking boots, bringing plenty of water, snacks, sunglasses, tick/insect repellant, binoculars, and a hat. It’s also good practice to do a thorough tick check once you’re off the trail. Please be respectful of this trail and remember that it is carry-in, carry-out. Please don’t litter.
If you are seeking even more hiking opportunities close by, look at the Trail Keeper (www.trailkeeper.org) page for plenty of hiking options just across the river in Sullivan County, New York. Happy Hiking!