All to often people think they have to drive hundreds of miles to get out and explore but it’s amazing what you’ll find right in your own backyard.
The entire month of October has felt like whirlwind with Ben and I driving more than 2,500 miles up and down the east cost. From Expo East, to the Northeast Overland Rally, and then back down for the Appalachian Rendezvous, you could say
our asses were begging for a comfortable chair we were a little worn out.
With a warm weekend coming up I broke out
google maps on the ipad my trusty map and started looking for what was available in the immediate area.
So after some deliberation we decided on Pine Grove Furnace State Park which is 30 minutes outside of Gettysburg, PA.
Pine Grove Furnace is part of a much larger state forest system which includes Michaux State Forest, the Tumbling Run Game Preserve, and Caledonia State Park.
One of the reasons we chose to head to Pine Grove this weekend though was because of their annual Fall Furnace Festival. Lets be honest, camping, funnel cake, and local made fudge all in once place? Who’s going to say no to that.
The park is also home to a lot of history, it is originally home to a iron and brick making operation, but is now the home of the Appalachian Trail Museum.
With the midpoint of the Appalachian Trail only a few miles away it’s a popular stop of through hikers, and you can usually find a few of them taking on the “gallon challenge” at the parks country store. For those of you that don’t know, the gallon challenge is where you have to eat an entire gallon of ice cream. For completing the challenge you win a wooden spoon; totally worth it.
I’m going to be honest now, instead of camping we got way to full on fun fair food, so we decided to hit Gettysburg, PA to get some dinner and head home.
We had dinner at the Dobbin House Tavern which was excellent, and then headed over to Sach’s Covered Bridge to try and find a ghost.
Overall Pine Grove Furnace State Park shows a lot of promise. There are a few good camp grounds, there is plenty of things to do, and apparently the beach is pretty nice when the weather is warmer.
Tony and I also spotted some promising dirt roads, and dispersed camping is allowed in Michaux State Forest. With that in mind, we’ll definitely be hitting the road this winter to scout out the location some more.