Pennsylvania has many vistas from isolated cliffs and meadows. However, for some reason, trails rarely seem to go to them. One such vista is in SGL 134 as it looks over Sandy Bottom in the Loyalsock State Forest. We call it the Sandy Bottom Vista.
I drove up the game commission road from Hoppestown Road and parked at the lot. Ben was there and we continued down the gated road to the left and entered the woods. This is an off trail hike. The hemlocks forests were beautiful and made the hike fairly easy. We continued along the contour of the plateau above an unnamed stream, heading south. We descended to some large ledges and soon reached the view.
The view was truly breathtaking, rising 700 feet above the Loyalsock Creek. The vista is at the top of a towering cliff and offers a near 180 degree view. We could see the bend of the creek below and the tiers of ridges and plateaus. Hawks soared below us.
Nearby is a unique pedestal rock with its own superb view. You do have to jump a couple feet to get to the rock. If you are afraid of heights, do not go onto it.
The setting behind the view was beautiful with cliffs and ledges. Hemlocks grew over carpets of moss. It felt like an island in the sky. There was one more view along the escarpment of cliffs.
From the view we descended to the unnamed creek to the east. I would not recommend doing this as it is steep. The creek is beautiful with an assortment of cascades and an old grade on the west side does provide access. The east branch of this creek does feature many large cascades and a 15 foot falls. There are also some large trees. The east branch has the old grade, unique old stone retaining walls, and a spring cascade that pours out the ground. If you want to explore the creek, I suggest taking the grade down from the top. Keep in mind the grade fades out before meeting the road to Huckle Run.
The hike to the vista is about .75 miles, one way. It is off trail. The best approach is to the follow the rim of the plateau above the unnamed creek to the east, descend gradually, and curve right below some ledges to the vistas.
Park at 41.420963, -76.751659. Vista is at 41.409875, -76.749178.