We finally made it to Quehanna Wild Area to do “Loop A” in early 2024. We hope to explore more this year. We scouted around a bit in 2023 to get a feel for the area.

New Map Experiments

We have a new Mapbox “slippy” map of horse riding trails at Quehanna wild area.

GeoJson Map – Quehanna wild area

Map of Quehanna Wild Area horseback riding trails

The map shows color-coded horse trailer parking:

  • official horse trailer parking
  • horse trailers fit, best for off-peak/off-season use
  • may be usable but not ideal (small, tight access, noise, etc.)

Read below for further descriptions of horse trailer parking options.

There May Be Elk!

If you’re not from the area, you may not know that Quehanna is elk country. And if you’re not from elk country, your horse may not know what elk are! So be prepared for a surprise.

On our first visit to Quehanna, our horse went on major alert after spotting a bunch of ratty looking elk off in the woods. Major curiosity! Eventually the elk wandered off, but several other times on our ride he stopped and pointed out to me that those smelly things were out there… waiting. Watching.

Trail Notes

Although most of the trails seem to naturally be dirt or sand, we’ve seen some surfaced with very coarse gravel (think railroad ballast). Bellefonte Posse is this way for at least 1/2 mile off Quehanna Hwy. The short #11 Connector is similar. If you have unshod horses with tender feet, some trails may not be good for you.

Part of Bellefonte Posse trail is mapped incorrectly in some online sources. The state brochure for the area shows it more accurately.

The shoulder of Quehanna Highway is wide enough to safely ride along in many places, but in summertime it can get overgrown; it does not appear they mow it.

Horse Loop Trails at Quehanna

Here are a few options for shorter horse loop trails at Quehanna:

NameMilesTimeVerticalDescriptionMap Link
Loop A4.81:35320Yellowsnake – Erie Camp – Cole Run – MohawkMap
Loop B5.01:40230Wykoff – Ligament – Twister – 11 – 11 Conn – Chipper Rd – Bellefonte Posse – Ligament – WykoffMap
Loop C6.02:00450Wykoff – Ligament – Bailey Log – Hoover Rd – Old Wykoff Run Rd – Ligament – WykoffMap
Loop D7.22:20530Wykoff – Ligament – Bailey Log – Gore Loop – Bailey Log – Hoover Rd – Old Wykoff Run Rd – Ligament – Wykoff

We’ve added sketch maps of these loops below…

NameDistanceTimeVerticalDescriptionMap Link
Loop A4.81:35320Yellowsnake – Erie Camp – Cole Run – MohawkMap

NameDistanceTimeVerticalDescriptionMap Link
Loop B5.01:40230Wykoff – Ligament – Twister – 11 – 11 Conn – Chipper Rd – Bellefonte Posse – Ligament – WykoffMap
NameDistanceTimeVerticalDescriptionMap Link
Loop C6.02:00450Wykoff – Ligament – Bailey Log – Hoover Rd – Old Wykoff Run Rd – Ligament – WykoffMap
NameDistanceTimeVerticalDescriptionMap Link
Loop D7.22:20530Wykoff – Ligament – Bailey Log – Gore Loop – Bailey Log – Hoover Rd – Old Wykoff Run Rd – Ligament – Wykoff
Horseback riding loop at Quehanna wild area


Be warned, there is very little in the region! Plan on bringing food, drinks, and plenty of fuel.

A small general store in Karthaus closed at 1pm on Sunday when we were by. No idea if they have food beyond snacks. No fuel.

Quehanna Lodge Bar and Grill looks like a reasonable place for food. It’s on Quehanna highway just north of Rt 879 intersection near Karthaus. Hours were only Thurs-Sun 11-5 in October when we went by.

A self-service fueling station in Karthaus takes credit cards only but has gas and diesel. Prices are a bit high. Open 24/7.

Your next options are Benezette or Snow Shoe, neither of which are very close; online reviews of food options in Benezette are not inspiring! Brothers Pizza in Snow Shoe is ok.


There are pit toilets at the Hoover Farm Wildlife Viewing parking lot at Quehanna Pike and Wykoff Run Road, but they are CLOSED “out of season” (whatever that means–it was almost 60F on 3/3/24). Space is limited to be able to pull in a rig, but there are a couple rough parking areas across the highway.

There are NO facilities at Yellowsnake campground. In order to camp there, you must have a trailer with a self-contained toilet. Maps show no other restrooms in the entire region, although it’s possible the forest office on Quehanna Highway has public access.

One would think Pennsylvania could do a bit more than this to encourage recreational use of public lands.

Horse Camping

Yellowsnake Equestrian Campground has six sites which are available by reservation. Astonishingly, it’s only open Memorial Day through October 31.

Each site has standing stalls. Design varies between sites and some may not be suitable for larger horses.

NO restrooms. NO running water. You must have a self-contained trailer (i.e. toilet) in order to camp here. There is a central manure pit.

Why this campground is only open Memorial Day through October 31 is baffling. November, April and May are ideal riding months, and we often get out all year long. It’s now mid-March, and temps are 60-70. Maybe the state needs a reality check on their recreational calendar?

Horse Water Sources

Yellowsnake Horse Camping area at Quehanna Highway and Reservoir Road does have a watering trough which is spring-fed. You can use this for horses even if you are not camping there. It is on Reservoir Road right outside the campground. Not sure if this water is tested; best to bring your own human drinking water.

No other public water sources are known, so you should bring at least a minimal supply of water for you and your horse when you are in this area.

Horse Trailer Parking

Considering all the miles of trails, there really aren’t very many good horse trailer parking options at Quehanna Wild Area. Be warned, most of the parking areas marked on state maps are NOT big enough to park a trailer.

Unfortunately Pennsylvania doesn’t seem to have a clue how to make parks or forests that are actually useful for public recreation involving horses.

Reservoir Road at Quehanna Highway is “designated” horse trailer parking. It could hold a few trailers, but you’re basically off-roading in grass areas. Pretty sad that there isn’t an actual lot with marked boundaries there!

Wykoff Run at Quehanna Highway is technically parking for Hoover Farm Wildlife Viewing area. On a weekday in off season you might be able to park a trailer there to get access to trails farther west away from Yellowsnake camping area, but it is a small lot and you are likely to piss someone off. There is a rough, gravel lot across the highway on Wykoff Run Rd you may be able to use at slow times. In nicer weather it’s often filled with hikers going to the “bat bunkers”.

Lincoln Road at Quehanna Highway has a small parking area which might hold one small trailer.

Lincoln Road just before Hoover Road has a wide grassy shoulder along the Noble-Chambers Memorial Forest. Noble and Chambers probably wouldn’t mind some company, and you could easily fit several trailers there. Not sure how well drained it is if the weather has been wet.

Informal Parking

Since the state can’t be bothered to give you legitimate trailer parking, you may have to hunt up the best spot you can. Some suggestions are…

Number 11 Trail at Quehanna Highway has a pulloff area that could hold a couple trailers, giving access to #11 and Teaberry Trail. It is right on the highway.

Three Runs Road at Quehanna Highway has a pulloff area that looks like it could hold 1.5 small trailers, giving access to #11 and Teaberry Trail. It’s right on the highway.

Hoover Road just south of Lincoln Road has an area under the power lines which is big enough to hold a couple trailers on either side of the road. It’s a bit rough and sometimes very muddy. Ironically, there is a field right next to it where the state could develop a proper trailer parking area, but…

We suggest you talk to any rangers you see about the lack of parking, and consider contacting the newly-created Pennsylvania “Office of Outdoor Recreation” and tell them you would like better horse trailer parking (and maybe a bathroom or two) in state lands with horse trails. The squeaky horse gets the grease!