Paws Along the Trail- Hidden River Bridge  LbNA # 43473

Placed DateSep 18 2008
LocationPortersville/Butler, PA
Planted ByPaws along the trail    
Found By TeamGreenThumb
Last Found Oct 17 2011
Hike Distance?

Moraine State Park is one of the most beautiful areas of western PA. Visit this link for things to see and do or for more information regarding the park itself. stateParks/parks.moraine.aspx

This letterbox is located on the North Country Trail in Moraine State Park on the North shore. This particular area of the trail has rather unusual scenery including a watery inlet from the lake itself, deep woods ferns and rock cliffs surrounding the water, and very large old trees. It is an easy walk, has some benches to rest, and is not a very long or challenging hike. It would be fun for anyone from young kids to avid hikers, as it is quite a pleasant trail. Do note that the box is located down a small grade off of the trail.

To begin- enter Moraine State Park from highway 422 at the North Shore exit. Follow the signs and drive to the bike rental parking lot.

Drive approximately 0.4 miles east on North Shore Drive to the trailhead sign for the North Country Trail. There is a pull off area where you can park safely.

The trailhead marker has a sign that points towards a path on the other side of the road leading to “Hidden River Bridge”. After parking, walk across the road, heading south on this trail.

Walk a short hike through the woods. The path will eventually cross the bike trail. Continue a short distance longer to the bridge. (You have gone about 0.3 miles). Cross the bridge and continue up the stairs to the top of the hill.

Here the trail will split. (For another time, if you walk the left branch of the trail it is a short enjoyable walk along the water and rocks to the lake shore.) The letterbox is located down the right path (following the blue trailhead blazes on the trees). Walk a short distance to a bench on your left. Have a seat and enjoy the beautiful view of the water, bridge, ferns and really cool trees.

Moving on…at this point you will need to count your paces, as the location of the box has few defining landmarks in the woods. You will continue 125 paces to the location of the box. After about 70 paces you will start to notice some very large very old trees around you, 2 of which have 3 trunks.

At 125 paces, stop, turn to your right and look down the small hilly grade into the woods. About 10 feet into the woods you will see a dead hollowed tree leaning towards the left. It has two sections of guardrail wood about 3 feet in length each lying on the ground and pointing in a V towards this tree. The box is hidden inside behind some clumps of bark. Please replace the bark and re-hide the box well.

Of note, if you miss the tree and walk too far, you will end up in the parking lot at the bike rental station where you started. To find the box, back track by walking 62 paces from the edge of the road back onto the trail and look to your left and down the hill as mentioned above.

I hope that you enjoy this walk. Don’t forget to “paws” along the trail =)