Scott A. Yeager, M.A., special to GANT News
Much of the land rests atop of the Allegheny Plateau – itself, a geological wonder, having both glaciated features from our planets Pleistocene Epoch and unglaciated segments that played home to early humans toward the decline of the glaciers.
Unlike northwest and northeastern Pennsylvania, the mountains of north-central Pennsylvania were spared much of the glacial activity, hence the flatter terrain and larger lakes to the west and east. Our hills are ancient and that, coupled with our vast forests, makes for a place on Earth like no other.
The Allegheny Mountains are far older than the Rocky Mountains. Because of time and weathering, the hills and mountains in the Pennsylvania Wilds are a bit softer in their features than those out west.
This is one of the facets unique to our region that makes a mere walk through the woods a special time.
Whether you are in the Moshannon State Forest, the Quehanna Wild Area or in the Allegheny National Forest, once you step off of the road and into the woods, you’ll notice a change – not just in your surroundings, but in yourself.
Around you are ancient hills and lush forests. Depending upon the time of year, your foot falls may be silenced by emerald vegetation, enlivened by crisp Autumn leaves or cushioned by fresh snow.
The mountains provide you with unique vistas, along with new and different ways of viewing our world.
The valleys in north-central Pennsylvania are often full of mystery; but in the same regard, our valleys are much like the people of this region – very receptive.
A walk through our region and its forests can impact your worldview. New perspectives are often very good for the soul and for one’s frame of mind.
The forests of the Pennsylvania Wilds provide visitors with a place to shed their unnatural selves and to reconnect with a person that may often prove most elusive to them – their self.
As you step through the woods, visit our streams, take in the views from our mountains, you’ll hear a great deal at first.
Birds, diverse wildlife, brooks, insects and more celebrate seeing you and will sing you songs. After some time, you’ll begin to feel more at ease and more at peace with yourself.
In the end, you’ll hear a familiar voice and revel in the clarity of your own thoughts and musing.
The forests, valleys and mountains of the Pennsylvania Wilds is a special place. Our forests provide both residents and visitors with a place to escape and balance their lives.
Our hemlock groves and laurel blanketed hills don’t discriminate, nor do have concern for much of a modern human being’s affiliations, creeds, social issues or political views.
When you’re here, you’re in the presence of something ancient, something beneficial, something essential.