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Gallitzin State Forest

Gallitzin State Forest was named in honor of Dimetrius Augustine Gallitzin, Prince-Priest of the Alleghenies, who established a mission at Loretto in Cambria Country in 1795. The forest is composed of 24,370 acres in northern Somerset, Bedford Cambria and Indiana counties. Much of Gallitzin rests on the Allegheny Front and the Laurel Ridge.

The main hiking areas in Gallitzin State Forest are found in the Babcock Division of the forest. Here you will find the John P. Saylor Trail, the western sections of the Lost Turkey Trail and the multi-use County Line Trail. In the Rager Mountain Division you will find hiking opportunities in the Charles Lewis Natural Area. The northern terminus of the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail is located just across the Conemaugh River from the Charles Lewis N.A.

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The County Line Trail is a relatively new multi-use trail located in Gallitizin State Forest in northern Somerset County. Located on route PA56, east of Windber near the small village of Ogletown, the County Line Trail is 10 miles long and is open for use by hikers, mountain bikers, and horse back riders. For this outing I opted to hike a seven mile circuit hike keeping to the mostly flat sections of the trail located on the Allegheny Plateau.


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The Charles F. Lewis Natural Area is located in a small section of the Galitzin State Forest located along the Conemaugh River, spanning the Indiana / Cambria county line. Named for a newspaperman and the first president of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, this natural area is located just across the river from the northern terminus of the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail.