The Williamsport Loop (#1)

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General Comments:

This 160+ mile route takes you in a circle just North of Williamsport – an area that (IMHO) is one of the very best motorcycle road hunting grounds anywhere in Pennsylvania.  There are many great roads in this area and I will blog about them in the future, (Lord willing) which explains the  “(#1) ” in the title.   You will start and end in historic Williamsport, home of the “Millionares” , the Little League Hall of Fame and the Crosscutters. Once a thriving lumber town, it had the highest per capita number millionares of any US city during the mid 19th century.  There are plenty of places to stay, eat and  shop in Williamsport – so it’s an ideal “base camp” for motorcycle touring enthusiasts.

Directions:
WilliamsportMap Link:    
https://goo.gl/maps/b4CFJanajn92

From Williamsport take US220 ‘South’ (but headed due West) towards Jersey Shore for 17miles; PA 44 North for 12 miles; PA 414 East for 58 miles to Canton; PA 154 south for 28 miles; US 220 ‘South for 20 miles to PA 864 for 18 miles: and take Pa 87  South back to Williamsport.   Approximately 160 miles in total.

Detailed Notes:

This route really gets underway as you pick-up  PA 414  like many such state roads in PA is really a patchwork quilt of different roads – some of the tarmac is smooth, wide and of good quality, other sections are rough, narrow, full of potholes and plagued with “tar snakes” which can cause your bike to act “squirrely” in turns. All of this just adds to the experience of the ride – just know that there are sections in which you can ride at a ‘sporting pace’ 😉  and others – not so much :( .

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Along route PA 414 you will traverse through the Tiadaghton State Forest. Tiadaghton was the name the Iroquois gave to Pine Creek, the largest tributary of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. Along this stretch you will alternately hug the banks of Pine Creek and cross-over it several times as you meander through the Tiadaghton forest. At times you will find yourself riding beside shear rock walls, and at others you will ride along a railroad bed that has been converted into a 62 mile bike/hiking path. The park itself offers lots of fishing, hiking, biking swimming and picnicking opportunities.  On a nice summer day you will see people enjoying all of these activities along in the park. Your eyes will feast upon beautiful mountains and valleys as you wind you way through the forest.

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As you cross US 15 the personality of PA414 changes with the terrain as you leave the forest and encounter rolling hills and farmland   For approximately 30 miles outside of the Tiadaghton, you will travel along gently rolling hills of farmland as you twist an turn along what once was a cow path that connected one farm to another. Along this stretch you will see far and wide as you travel along the gentle roller-coaster ride offered-up by PA414.

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PA 414 East of US 15

PA 154 is another very interesting road with multiple personalities.  Above Forksville the surface is a rough and well worn oil-and-chip affair with a few tight curves and some rolling hills.  At Forksville – PA154 turns from a well worn ‘back country road’ into a beautifully manicured raceway – relatively speaking!  You will want to stop for gas here and you should consider strolling across the covered bridge to visit the Forksville General Store for a well deserved rest while you grab a bite at the restaurant.  As you travel down the last stretch of PA 154 you travel through the Worlds End State Park .  Worlds End State Park  is in a narrow S-shaped valley of the Loyalsock Creek just south of Forksville, Sullivan County. The scenery is spectacular, especially the June mountain laurel and fall foliage. Canyon Vista, reached via Mineral Spring and Cold Run roads, provides outstanding views. Loyalsock Creek is stocked with trout each year by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. The cold mountain water provides good fishing most of the year.

The Loyalsock Creek at Worlds End Park

The Loyalsock Creek at Worlds End Park

This is a great stretch of road – in fact – if God ever made a section of road to reward the most righteous of motorcycle enthusiasts – it would be the 10 miles of PA 154 between Forksville and US 220! You will enjoy excellent road conditions as you carve-up some of the best sweepers and anywhere in the state. In fact – this section is so fun – you may want to turn-around and hit it again and again! As if this wasn’t enough – the scenery of the forest and the view of the Loyalsock creek is also fabulous on this stretch of road. As you can tell – I highly recommend it – At the end of PA154 you will pick-up US220.  On US 220 you will descend out of the mountains. For the next 20 miles US 220 is fun ride – offering some very nice sweepers coupled with elevation changes.  The fun stops at Hughesville as you begin to enter “civilization” again…it has to happen sometime.  As noted above, Williamsport is  your start and end for this route and it  offers many places to stay and to eat that are biker friendly. Enjoy ! 😉

Me
Brad <XX><

Blog author Brad Morgan of Carlisle operates a Servpro business in the Harrisburg metropolitan area. The link to his business website is the only compensation he receives for producing/maintaining this blog:

 

SERVPRO of Hershey/Swatara Professionals provide fire and water damage restoration services. SERVPRO of Hershey/Swatara proudly serves Hershey, Harrisburg, Hummelstown, Lebanon, Camp Hill, and surrounding areas. We are available 24 hours/7 days a week and are ready to restore damage to your home or commercial structure

 

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