While the area of French Creek State Park was once an industrial complex that helped fuel the growth of a fledgling nation, it's now something very different. This 7,500-acre park, located 50 miles or so northwest of Philadelphia, offers a nature refuge for people and a wide variety of animals.
As the largest block of contiguous forest between Washington D.C. and New York City, French Creek State Park draws visitors from miles around looking to escape the grind of city life. When they get there, they're treated to a smorgasbord of outdoor activities and opportunities to relax and unwind.
With terrain comprising everything from forests and lakes to wetlands and open fields, French Creek State Park offers plenty to see and do. Hikers can take advantage of 35 miles of well-marked trails, offering everything from challenging treks to shorter and more relaxed strolls through nature. Mountain bikers can enjoy 20 miles of trails and horseback riders can join up with Horse-shoe Trail, a 140-mile track that winds through the park and onto adjacent lands.
Other recreational activities on offer vary depending on when you visit. Swimming (in the pool by Hopewell Lake), boating, and fishing are popular when the weather is warm, while cross-country skiing, ice skating, and sledding all feature prominently during winter. There's even a disc golf course winding through the woods beside Hopewell Lake.
If you're planning on staying for a while, the campground features everything from cabins and yurts to electric and non-electric sites. Pets are only permitted on a selection of designated campsites, so check the fine print before making a reservation.
Speaking of your furry friend, they're more than welcome to join you when you visit French Creek State Park. You'll need to make sure they're leashed or in a crate, always under your control, and that you remember to clean up after them.
If you can do that, you'll be all set for a fantastic camping holiday with your dog.