The Endless Mountains Trail (EMT) is a trail proposal that would connect the east end of the Loyalsock Trail to famous Ricketts Glen State Park. As a result, the trail would connect Worlds End to Ricketts Glen, two of Pennsylvania’s premier state parks, along a common route, creating a remarkable hiking opportunity. Most of the route would cross SGL 13.
The EMT was first proposed about ten years ago. Scouting began to find the most scenic route across SGL 13 and Ricketts Glen State Park. The Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC) manages SGL 13.
Initially it was hoped the new trail would simply become an eastern extension of the Loyalsock Trail. The club that maintains the Loyalsock Trail objected, so the proposal became a new trail, the Endless Mountains Trail.
The Sullivan County Commissioners have always been supportive of the EMT.
The initial proposal brought the EMT to the Loyalsock Creek, and there was also a proposal to extend the trail through Ricketts Glen and into SGL 57.
The PGC wanted a more streamlined route between US 220 and Sullivan Falls. This was accomplished by removing the section of trail along the Loyalsock Creek. The PGC also did not want a trail through SGL 57, and that section was effectively postponed.
The PGC had concerns about what group would build and maintain the trail. A local recreation club agreed to fill that role. Camping is an ongoing issue, as it will not be allowed on SGL 13.
Two private landowners exist between US 220 and SGL 13. The trail uses an easement and a lease to cross these private lands. For the lease, the trail will be closed during certain hunting seasons.
The PGC also requested a trail feasibility study be performed on the trail corridor.
The EMT would be one of the most scenic trails in the eastern U.S. with unparalleled diversity, including dozens of waterfalls, gorges, glens, vistas, a pond, isolation, hemlock forests, whitewater rapids, cliffs, rock overhangs, and wetlands.
The most notable feature of the EMT will be its numerous waterfalls. It will likely have more waterfalls than any other trail in the east.
Connecting Worlds End to Ricketts Glen is a world class opportunity that will attract hikers and tourists to the region.
Across SGL 13, the EMT will be about 17 miles long. The entire trail will be about 27 miles long.
The map below only shows the proposed route across SGL 13. A route will be proposed into Ricketts Glen if the PGC approves the trail in SGL 13. DCNR (which manages the state parks and forests) has indicated its support for the EMT.
Once the trail is approved and construction begins, there will be outreach to attract volunteers. Volunteers will be needed to both build and maintain the trail.
The feasibility study is ongoing and will be nearing completion. Upon completion, it will be submitted to the PGC for approval.
Photos along the trail corridor: