Lake Winola Pine Forest

White pine and hemlock forest at the outlet of Lake Winola

At the outlet of Lake Winola is a hidden gem- a forest of white pine that is possibly old-growth; you will also find hemlocks and some huge oak trees.  Park at the boat launch and cross the road to a concrete slab that was once a merry-go-round.  There is an obvious, but unmarked, trail that enters the forest.  The forest is quite beautiful, with may trees easily towering over 100 feet.  The forest floor is open, with only a few saplings and ferns; off to the right is a small creek.  The pine forest ends at another small creek, which the trail crosses and leads to the ballfields.  Here there are a few monstrous oak trees.  You can retrace your steps, or make a loop through the forest by climbing a gradual ascent, although the path is not as obvious.  The pine forest is not large, maybe 20 acres or so and it is owned by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.  The terrain is easy and ideal for children; the forest floor is often carpeted with pine needles.  As you walk, you may hear the rapid-fire of a woodpecker.
 

Large white pine and hemlocks

 
As you come back to where you started, you may see another trail heading uphill.  This leads to the old trolley railroad grade across the road that ended at Lake Winola and once went to Clarks Summit.  The Countryside Conservancy is presently working on the Trolley Trail from Clarks Summit to Factoryville; someday it may extend to Lake Winola.
 

Another big one

 
 
This forest is a gem hidden in plain sight.  The next time you are at the Lake Winola boat launch, just cross the road to see the beauty of this forest. 
 

Silhouettes

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