Park: Lick Hollow, part of Forbes State Forest
Where: Along Route 40 East, incline headed up to the summit.
On your way to Ohiopyle, stop here for a quiet hike or picnic under mountaintops before arriving to the summer crowds at the popular state park.
As for trails in the area, there are 4. We chose Pine Knob Trail, a 2 mile hike to an all-natural overlook over the Laurel Highlands. The beginning of the trail was covered in ferns and gnats but quickly moved into the traditional rocky style hike that Pennyslvania loves to present. We hiked through one switchback and eventually ended at a fork in the road where we chose to walk left and ended walking onto what looked like a quad or snowmobile trail with a few other entrances to other paths. We easily found the right way to hike (straight through to continue along the path) after backtracking a few feet. Duh. Soon after, we arrived at a rocky ledge with a view that resembles that of the pull-off along the summit and route 40, but of course, the journey and the arrival experience here is much better.
“Just 2 miles long, and stretches from the picnic area to the Pine Knob overlook. The trail parallels Lick Run for parts of its length, but it is a rugged trail for the most part. The elevation of this trail changes about 700 vertical feet from its lowest point of 1,440 feet above sea level at the picnic area, to approximately 2,130 feet at the Pine Knob Overlook. Be prepared for a 4 hour roundtrip. Pack plenty of liquids during the summer and warm clothes in the winter.” – Trail Map (View Here)
You can actually hike to another area of Forbes State Forest, Quebec Run Wild Area, from here with Whitetail Trail. This is about a 9.5 mile journey and will get you to the top of the mountain into Farmington, PA, where there is much history to be found, such as Fort Necessity National Battlefield and Braddock’s Grave. #GeorgeWashingtonWasHere
This area is a great spot if you’re a local looking to get away into the woods minus the Ohiopyle crowds or a visitor that wants a beautiful aerial view of western PA with a nice hike to boot.