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Readers’ Choice Northeast Hikes: Ricketts Glen State Park, PA

22 falls in a one day. Need we say more?
northeast rc ricketts 445x260Ricketts Glen State Park, PA (P. Michael Photoz/AKA/AGEFOTOSTOCK)
Ricketts Glen State Park, PA | Panther Gorge and Mt. Marcy, Adirondack Park, NY | Bernard Mountain, Acadia National Park, ME | Vermont’s Green Mountains Foliage | Maine’s 100-Mile Wilderness | Burroughs Range Loop, Catskill Mountain Preserve, NY |

“Excuse the pun,” says Scott Adams, “but Ricketts Glen blows all other Northeast waterfall hikes out of the water.” The 7.1-mile hike averages three cascades per mile, the tallest of which tumbles 94 feet off Red Rock Mountain. In other words, it has both quantity and quality.

Start from the Falls trailhead off PA 118, 30 miles west of Wilkes-Barre, and follow the path as it crisscrosses gurgling Kitchen Creek for 1.3 easy miles through a forest of 500-year-old hemlock, oak, birch, ash, and maple. At 1.8 miles, you’ll reach the confluence of Kitchen Creek’s two branches. The trail lollipops up one gorge to the Highland Trail, which connects to another for the return. Head up Glen Leigh Gorge to approach Adams’s favorite falls from below. Forty-one-foot Huron Falls (the fifth falls in Glen Leigh) cascades over multiple steps through the narrow gorge to a rocky amphitheater with a natural bench.


PLAN IT
Driving From Wilkes-Barre, take PA 309 six miles north to Dallas. Turn left onto the Memorial Hwy. and go 4.5 miles to PA 118. Turn left and drive 16.3 miles to the trailhead.

Map and Guide Download a free map at dcnr.state.pa.gov.

Contact (570) 477-5675

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