Jan. 15, 2024

Contact: Jay Ziegler
Board Chair
Rothrock Trail Alliance
(717) 580-3154


Rothrock Trail Alliance planning construction on multi-use, single track trail expansion in Rothrock State Forest

The work is funded by grants from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau.

Rothrock Trail Alliance will host a public meeting Feb. 20 to showcase plans for 53 miles of new trails.

The Rothrock Trail Alliance (RTA), a committee of ClearWater Conservancy, is launching construction on new multi-use, single track natural surface trail in the Rothrock State Forest. Applied Trails Research, in collaboration with RTA and the Bureau of Forestry – Rothrock State Forest, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), has field designed and flagged approximately 53 miles of new sustainable trails on a loop system across Rothrock State Forest. Intended for shared use by recreators, including hikers, bikers and equestrian riders, the endeavor will expand on the forest’s hundreds of miles of trails with more beginner and family-friendly terrain.

Construction will begin this year with 8 miles of trail in the Musser Gap area, with plans to connect to Hubler Gap and Whipple Dam in the future. Financial support for the trail design came from private community members as well as grants from the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau. Construction of the first 8 miles of trail is funded through a $365,700 grant from the Recreational Trails Program, administered by the Bureau of Recreation and Conservation of DCNR.  RTA plans to contract with a professional trail builder in the first quarter of 2024, with construction to follow.

“RTA and Clearwater negotiated this historic access agreement with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, opening the pathway for third party groups to build trails within state forest,” said Jay Ziegler, RTA board chair. “We are excited to have pioneered this agreement to improve PA trails and finally reach the construction process for our local Rothrock State Forest. RTA represents all trail users and needs your help to make this vision a reality for all to enjoy.”

Rothrock Trail Alliance and partners are hosting an open house and public stakeholder meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024, from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at Calvary Harvest Fields in Boalsburg, Pennsylvania, to announce the start of the project, showcase trail design, and solicit funding to construct future sections of the project. RTA is seeking support to fund future projects, including matching funds for Bureau of Recreation and Conservation grants.

In addition to financial support, Rothrock Trail Alliance is seeking volunteers to assist in a variety of ways, including trail finish work, website maintenance, social media, capital campaign support, membership tracking, communications and more. More information will be available at the Feb. 20 meeting and online at


The mission of the Rothrock Trail Alliance (RTA) is to engage in and support efforts that advance trail infrastructure and promote positive experiences for all trail users.

RTA is a committee within Clearwater Conservancy, originally formed as a chapter of the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation in 2018 (known as Friends of Rothrock) and transitioned to the current arrangement in Spring 2023. RTA works closely with DCNR.

Clearwater Conservancy and Rothrock Trail Alliance believe that every individual has a right to access and enjoy the natural resources within their community, and that these resources need to be nurtured and protected by all of us.

Instagram: @rothrocktrails