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Wolf Rock Loop trail at Laurel Summit State Park

Wolf Rock Loop trail at Laurel Summit State Park. Photo: David Fulmer, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Situated just over an hour and 20 minutes from Pittsburgh, Laurel Summit State Park is a popular day trip destination for those who want to escape into nature.

Spanning some 6,000 acres of rolling hills and forested terrain, its main attraction is its extensive trail system, which winds its way through rugged landscapes and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

While hiking is popular on them in the summer, when the snow hits, the trails are transformed into a winter wonderland, perfect for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

For those seeking a more relaxing activity, this Pennsylvania state park offers plenty of opportunities for picnicking and birdwatching, with several designated picnic areas and an abundance of bird species to observe.

Unfortunately, it does not have any camping facilities onsite, hence most people visit it on a day trip basis.

However, for those who want to stay a bit longer, there are several campsites in the surrounding area in which you can stay.

Activities

The park is a good place to come to enjoy a wide range of recreational outdoor leisure pursuits.

Below is a quick rundown of some of the more popular activities you can do whilst at Laurel Summit State Park.

Hiking at Laurel Summit State Park

Hiking at Laurel Summit State Park is a great way to connect with nature, get some exercise, and enjoy the beautiful scenery of Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands.

The park features several easy to moderate hiking trails that wind through the beautiful forests and offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

The most notable hiking trail in the park is the Laurel Summit Trail, which is a 1.2-mile round-trip hike to the summit. The trail begins at the Laurel Summit State Park parking area and takes hikers through a beautiful forest before reaching the summit. Once at the summit, hikers are rewarded with panoramic views of the Laurel Highlands and the surrounding countryside.

In addition to the Laurel Summit Trail, the park also features several other trails, including the Laurel Run Trail and the Spruce Flats Trail. These trails offer longer hiking experiences and lead hikers through some of the most beautiful areas of the park.

Picnicking at Laurel Summit State Park

The beautiful natural scenery of Laurel Summit State Park makes it a wonderful location for a picnic.

Throughout the park there are several picnic areas with tables and grills for visitors to use. Many are situated in a wooded setting with plenty of shade, making it a pleasant spot to relax during hot summer days.

As well as the picnic areas, there are several pavilions that can be reserved for group events. The pavilions come equipped with picnic tables and grills and are perfect for family reunions, birthday parties, and other special occasions.

Please be aware that the consumption of alcohol is not permitted anywhere in the park.

Winter Activities at Laurel Summit State Park

During the winter, Laurel Summit State Park offers lots of winter activities to enjoy in the snow.

One of the most popular activities is cross-country skiing, with trails available for both beginners and more experienced skiers.

Snowshoeing is also a great way to explore the park’s winter landscape, and visitors can rent snowshoes from nearby outfitters. While for those who prefer a more thrilling experience, there is snowmobiling available on designated trails within the park.

Snow tubing is also another fun activity for families and groups to enjoy when conditions are favorable.

Hunting at Laurel Summit State Park

Hunting is a popular activity at the park, providing opportunities for snaring white-tailed deer, black bear, and wild turkey in designated areas during the appropriate seasons.

In addition to traditional hunting, the park also allows for archery hunting and hunting with dogs.

To partake in hunting at Laurel Summit State Park, you will need to obtain a license from the Pennsylvania Game Commission and wear the required safety gear.

If hunting with dogs, you must also ensure they are licensed and kept under control at all times.

Pets

Pet owners can enjoy a fun-filled day with their furry friends at Laurel Summit State Park, however certain rules and regulations are in place with regards to their presence.

While pets are permitted throughout the park, they must remain leashed and under control at all times. Owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets and disposing of waste properly. Park officials may ask owners to remove their pets if they become disruptive or aggressive towards other visitors or wildlife.

Certain other conditions apply, so if you intend to bring your pet it is worth familiarizing yourself with this pet policy by contacting the staff at the main office.

Camping

Laurel Summit State Park does not have any campgrounds, but there are several nearby options available for those who want to stay overnight.

One of the closest campgrounds is the Ridge Campground, located in nearby Stahlstown. This private campground offers both tent and RV sites, as well as cabins and cottages for rent.

Another nearby option is the Linn Run State Park campground, which offers 34 tent and RV sites in a wooded setting near the Linn Run Creek. The campground has amenities like flush toilets, hot showers, and a dump station.

For those looking for a more rustic camping experience, there are several primitive campsites available in Forbes State Forest, which surrounds Laurel Summit State Park.

These sites do not have amenities like running water or electricity, but offer a secluded and natural setting for camping. Some sites require a short hike to reach, adding to the adventure of the camping experience.

Park Location

Laurel Summit State Park
Linn Run Rd
Somerset, PA 15501
Phone: 724.238.6623

Park Website

Map

Video

Here is a short YouTube video showcasing the trail to Sprice Flats Bog at Laurel Summit State Park: