RoadRUNNER’s Bucket List Roads: Bucktail Trail, Pennsylvania Scenic Byway (State Route 120)

Sep 16, 2017 View Comments by

Many years before it became known as the Bucktail Trail, PA 120 was a Native American Trail called the Sinnemahoning Path. It was used by Native Americans to cross the eastern continental divide between the Susquehanna and the Allegheny Rivers. Today, State Route 120 leads riders through a progression of small towns and unspoiled natural beauty.

Scenery: The unspoiled forestlands, steep valleys, rolling hills, wildlife and the majestic West Branch Susquehanna River all combine to create a relaxing sensory experience on two wheels.
Curves: Frequent sweepers
Traffic: Usually light
Distance: Approximately 100 miles; the ride up to Hyner View State Park will add 12 miles and lots of smiles.
Time Required: Three hours one-way
Services: Limited, start with a full tank of gas
Best Time to Go: Although this route can be ridden from April through October, the best time to experience it is during the fall, when trees are ablaze with autumn colors.
Technical Difficulty: Moderate/Easy

Points of Interest:
Ridgway, PA: A charming historic village, which is also the county seat of Elk County, Pennsylvania.
St. Marys, PA: Founded in 1842, St. Marys’ Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1998.
Bucktail SP & Natural Area: Following SR 120 for some 75 miles, this natural area was named after the Pennsylvania Bucktail Rangers Regiment in the Civil War. Elk are often spotted in this area.
Renovo, PA: This town was originally established as a railroading nexus and a resort location. Although a shadow of its former self, the town still has many historic structures and resides in a beautiful, natural setting.
Hyner View SP: This park may be small in size, but the panoramic, sweeping views of the overlook are extensive. They include the West Branch Susquehanna River valley and SR 120 crossing over the river.
Lock Haven, PA: Starting out in 1833 as a timber town and haven for travelers on the West Branch Canal, Lock Haven has locations on the National Register of Historic Places and several enticing restaurants.

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