SLB Photography

Mt. Davis Natural Area – Forbes State Forest

Mt. Davis

I finally made it out to Forbes State Forest! Forbes State Forest was named for General John Forbes. It reaches 59,000 acres of land spread across Fayette, Somerset, and Westmoreland counties in Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands. Also, located in Forbes State Forest is Mt. Davis, this is the highest point in Pennsylvania coming in at 3,213 ft. Mt. Davis is the summit of Negro Mountain. Though you may not even realize it when you’re there. This was the destination on this day, I did make it, however, missed sunrise. It’s a 2 hour drive from my house, which I didn’t plan for…oops. When I arrived mid-morning, and climbed the observation tower, all I could see was blue sky. Amazing views nonetheless! I will definitely be planning another trip out there. Forbes State Forest had much more to offer. So after the quick look of the view at the valleys and mountains, I began my hike. I took the appropriately named High Point Trail that connected with Tub Mill Run Trail. That trail runs east around Negro Mountain. The trail is marked with red blazes, it is covered with sandstone rock beds. It seems unkept and makes for a rugged hike. It was hot and humid, which meant mosquitos, everywhere…buzzing around my head at all times made it very hard to stop to setup a photo or even to rest for that matter! Along the trail were thick patches of Bracken Fern and Mountain Laurels. Tall Rhododendrons were along the trail as well. I was amazed at how tall they can grow in the wild, I admit these are the tallest I’ve seen! Tub Mill Run comes in at 2.8 miles, but I didn’t make it the entire trail…I got lost. I missed the red blazed marker near the lower half of the trail that runs parallel to an unnamed service road. I hiked up and down the service road looking for a connecting trail…but that didn’t happen. I finally found where I had come off the trail, it was time to hike back. It was mid-day and very hot. I will be back to hike the rest of the trail. Mt. Davis and Negro mountain areas have a ton of history and I want to explore more.

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