Pine Creek Running Through the "Grand Canyon" of Pennsylvania in Leonard Harrison State Park

Lovers of the outdoors will delight in the discovery that is Potter-Tioga. Featuring acres of unspoilt countryside, the region has a reputation for stunning scenery and a range of outdoor activities to appeal to everyone from those who are new to outdoor pursuits, to seasoned outdoor enthusiasts. We take a look at some of the highlights to enjoy at Potter-Tioga.

The Pennsylvanian counties of Potter and Tioga sit on its northern border with New York state. Home to the Pine Creek Gorge, known as the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania, the area is famed for its rich trails and breath-taking views.

Surrounded by about 165,000 acres of state forest, the Gorge itself begins at Ansonia near Wellsboro and runs south for about 47 miles, traversing the Leonard Harrison and Colton Point State Parks. The Pine Creek Rail Trail runs along the bottom of Pine Creek Gorge for some 62 miles. Named as one of the ‘10 Great Places to Take a Bike Tour’, the Trail can be used for biking, hiking, and horseback riding. With a gentle 2% grade along its entire length, The Pine Creek Rail Trail is popular with cross-country skiers in winter too.

Nature lovers will marvel at the dramatic scenery and unrivalled beauty of the Gorge. Diverse plants and wildlife are abundant along the trail, with ospreys, eagles, coyotes, herons, river otters, black bears, and deer, as well as many other species, thriving in the valley.

For water lovers, there are plenty of lakes to explore. Four large lakes, Hills Creek Lake, Tioga, Hammond, and Cowanesque offer camping, boat hire, kayaking, fishing, and swimming.  Smaller lakes, Lyman Run, Nessmuk, Beechwood, and Hamilton offer a more sedate pace with motorless boating and fishing. And if you’re lucky enough to catch a fish, you may be landing trout, panfish, pickerel, or walleye.

And it’s not only in the daytime that visitors to the region will marvel at the natural phenomenon. The Cherry Springs State Park, southeast of Coudersport, is famous for its magnificent night skies. It’s said that the Milky Way shines so bright here that it will cast your shadow on a clear night. It was, in fact, named the Best Place on Earth for Stargazing by the Travel Channel and designated a Gold Level Dark Sky Park by the International Dark Sky Association.

The winter in Potter-Tioga is spectacular whatever your sport or interest. With a total of 29 groomed cross-country skiing trails, there’s plenty of opportunity to explore. And if you prefer a more sedate pace, why not try snowshoeing? You can take the same groomed trails or head off into the backcountry for a real mountain adventure. Want to speed up the pace? Then give snowmobiling a try. There are over 450 miles of groomed trails to explore!

There’s something for everyone at Potter-Tioga. As well as camping, the region offers secluded cabins and cottages, chic bed and breakfast accommodations, lodges, hotels, and motels to suit every budget.

The thriving region also hosts a selection of events and fun for all the family including craft shows, music festivals, live theatre productions, and even the North Central Wine Festival.

Potter-Tioga is an irresistible destination for your next vacation. To find out more, please visit

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