Fat Snow Biking - Winter Adventure on Wheels

Fat Snow Biking - Winter Adventure on Wheels

February 03, 2021

Whether exploring forest roads, crushing bike-friendly trails or cruising down the neighborhood lane, fat biking in the winter is a great way to stay active and enjoy the outdoors.

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New Perspectives on an Old Trail

New Perspectives on an Old Trail

February 03, 2021

There are so many great reasons to explore new places, but there are likely equal reasons to visit a familiar spot in a new season.

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An ode to my favorite map

An ode to my favorite map

January 20, 2021

While I don’t necessarily remember the first time I picked up and actually used a map, I do know that I rely on maps regularly. There are too many places with unreliable cell reception to think our digital resources can guide us, unwaveringly. But, with a map in hand and a few other necessary supplies, we can be unstoppable. 

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Mid Winter Slump: Tips for Staying Motivated as Winter Trudges On

Mid Winter Slump: Tips for Staying Motivated as Winter Trudges On

January 13, 2021

This is a hey, winter ain’t so bad story. Not so sure? Keep reading.

Winter changes the landscape and can change our outdoor experiences. It takes a familiar trail and transforms it into a new experience. But I also understand that this time of year, after enduring a couple months of overcast skies and damp, chill-you-to-the-bone, below-freezing temps can really start to wear on a person.

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Take A Hike: 5 Simple Steps To Enjoy A Walk In The Woods & Keep It Safe During the Pandemic

Take A Hike: 5 Simple Steps To Enjoy A Walk In The Woods & Keep It Safe During the Pandemic

December 31, 2020

This has been a stressful time. As the worldwide pandemic continues and the country faces old challenges and new, throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, and throughout the country more and more folks are discovering or re-discovering the gift of hiking on public land.  Whether you are a beginner hiker, or getting back out there for the first time in a while, this guide will give you some simple steps to enjoying hiking safely during the pandemic and any time.One of the great benefits of hiking during the pandemic is that when you find the right place to go, it can be easily done with proper social distancing.  

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Finding Sanity - On Two Wheels

Finding Sanity - On Two Wheels

December 29, 2020

Our family and friends found sanity from the pandemic on our bikes, from buttery singletrack to family-friendly Rail Trails to snowy forest roads. Here are some of our favorite sanity-inducing locales this year...

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Going into the Pennsylvania Woods: A Photo Essay

Going into the Pennsylvania Woods: A Photo Essay

December 26, 2020

Winter explorations are a special experience in this place. The air is fresh and crisp, the forest floor and river banks crunch underfoot in a new and different way and the reliable stillness is a welcome contrast to our wild, uncertain days. 

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Winter Hiking with Kids - Tips and Tricks

Winter Hiking with Kids - Tips and Tricks

December 09, 2020

We’ve all been there before: You got a late start, the kids fell asleep in the car, lunches are somehow insufficient and the kids are still hungry, and now you’re in the middle of the weather you planned to miss by leaving early. It happens to the best of us!

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Gifting Adventure

Gifting Adventure

December 01, 2020

The holiday season is upon us and as this global pandemic trudges on, what better way to celebrate the season than with social distancing-ready gear? This year, give your friends and family the things they really need: the tools to take them on adventures...far from everyone else! While it’s hard to choose from all the rad gear in the Purple Lizard shop, here are a few of our top favs!

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Chasing Lizards: How to Plan a Spontaneous Family Outing

Chasing Lizards: How to Plan a Spontaneous Family Outing

November 25, 2020

Every trip has its ups and downs, no matter how much planning you put into it, so why not take advantage of an unexpected opportunity to get outside with your kiddos! No matter what lizard they choose, there will always be lessons learned and memories made.

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How to Read A Purple Lizard Map

How to Read A Purple Lizard Map

November 24, 2020

So you have one, or maybe ten Purple Lizard Maps. But how do you read them in order to make your own adventure? We've listed some quick hints below, to help you on your way to a successful adventure with your Lizard Map!

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Go Explore Loyalsock State Forest in Pennsylvania

Go Explore Loyalsock State Forest in Pennsylvania

September 18, 2020

Loyalsock State Forest, located in the heart of Penns Woods, has just about everything that an outdoors lover could want. Waterfalls, vistas, trails, forest roads, swimming holes, historical relics, camping sites; this forest has it all!

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Old Loggers Path: One of the Finest Backpacking Loops in Pennsylvania

Old Loggers Path: One of the Finest Backpacking Loops in Pennsylvania

August 06, 2020

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Paddling Pine Creek Pennsylvania

Paddling Pine Creek Pennsylvania

June 05, 2020

Pine Creek Pennsylvania offers a paddling experience you won't forget. The creek winds through Pine Creek Gorge, the famous "Grand Canyon of PA", a beautiful weaving stretch of water which cuts deeply through the Allegheny Mountains in North Central PA as it heads south toward the West Branch of the Susquehanna River.

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Blueberry Trail: Family Adventure at Black Moshannon Bog Natural Area

Blueberry Trail: Family Adventure at Black Moshannon Bog Natural Area

April 17, 2020

There are so many family friendly hikes and places to explore in Moshannon/Quehanna! One our our favorite is Black Moshannon Bog Natural Area. This short walk is a wonderful opportunity for young minds to explore and experience rare plant and bird species on the Allegheny Plateau.

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Take A Walk On The Mid State Trail in Rothrock State Forest, PA

Take A Walk On The Mid State Trail in Rothrock State Forest, PA

March 18, 2020

The Mid State Trail (MST) is a long distance backpacking trail, which extends over 500 Kilometers (around 320 miles) from the southern border of Pennsylvania, through the heart of the ridge and valley region, to the northern border of Pennsylvania. Approximately 45 miles of the MST cut through Rothrock Forest. The blog below will highlight a long, dry linear stretch of the MST, which is lined with excellent vistas from near Huntingdon to Pine Grove Mills. Follow along as we lead you on a hike of the MST in Rothrock State Forest! 

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Spring Adventure in Quehanna Wild Area, PA: Mosquito Creek Trail Loop

Spring Adventure in Quehanna Wild Area, PA: Mosquito Creek Trail Loop

March 18, 2020

Adventurers looking for a one or two day hike in Quehanna Area won’t be disappointed by this loop! It is relatively flat which makes for easy hiking, with fantastic vistas and beautiful stream along the way.

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Sheepskin Trail and Other Great Local Paths in Uniontown, PA

Sheepskin Trail and Other Great Local Paths in Uniontown, PA

March 17, 2020

Uniontown Pennsylvania and a few surrounding municipalities having been working hard to design and implement hiking and biking paths throughout the area. Their efforts are paying off, as we learned when we visited this area to create our Ohiopyle-Laurel Highlands Lizard Map.

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Plan An Adventure In Quebec Run Wild Area, Pennsylvania

Plan An Adventure In Quebec Run Wild Area, Pennsylvania

March 13, 2020

Quebec Run Wild Area is an exceptional spot to recreate in southwestern Pennsylvania. Mountain bikers, hikers, backpackers, and trail runners will all love this destination.

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Kentuck Campground: Camping, Recreating, and Relaxing In Ohiopyle State Park, PA

Kentuck Campground: Camping, Recreating, and Relaxing In Ohiopyle State Park, PA

February 26, 2020

Ohiopyle State Park is well-known for its waterfalls, tourist facilities, and day-use activities. But there seems be be less attention given to the great camping opportunities at the park. Cue the Purple Lizard Department of Adventure to swoop in to fill the void. Follow below as we present a quick teaser of just a handful of less popular, yet maybe more rewarding, options that you can experience this year when you visit Ohiopyle State Park.

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Camp Michaux and Sunset Rocks: History, Vistas and More in Michaux Forest, PA

Camp Michaux and Sunset Rocks: History, Vistas and More in Michaux Forest, PA

February 17, 2020

Follow along with the Department of Adventure on a 3-mile journey to explore history, the Appalachian Trail, and beautiful vistas of Michaux State Forest. The adventure begins at the parking area at the intersection of Bunk Hill Road and Michaux Road, northwest of Pine Grove Furnace State Park.

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Rincón, Puerto Rico – Caribbean Romance Awaits

Rincón, Puerto Rico – Caribbean Romance Awaits

February 04, 2020

Rincón Puerto Rico is the perfect romantic getaway!  Just enough off the beaten path with everything you and your lover need to make memories to last a lifetime.  Beaches, sunsets, romantic dinners, and all the adventure options you desire.

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Traversing Ridges and Valleys in Rothrock State Forest, PA

Traversing Ridges and Valleys in Rothrock State Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

With over 300 miles of non-motorized trails, tons of gravel and dirt roads, and 24/7 access, Rothrock State Forest is a true gem for year-round outdoor recreation near State College, PA. Although the forest roads are not maintained in winter, a few parking lots along the perimeter of the forest provide ample access in almost any conditions. Below, we've chosen a few of our favorite very difficult trail loops accessible in the winter from one of these parking areas. The following loops are best for those who enjoy challenging, steep, and rocky climbs and descents.

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Sand Mountain Trail System: Your New Favorite Winter Adventure Destination

Sand Mountain Trail System: Your New Favorite Winter Adventure Destination

January 10, 2020

Contrary to popular belief, not every trail in Central PA is difficult and rocky. But, moderate trails for hiking, running, and riding within public lands of Central Pennsylvania can be hard to find. We, like you, spend spring, summer, and fall toiling through rhododendron tunnels, stumbling over rocks, and pushing our bicycles uphill on climbs just too tough to pedal -and we love it - but sometimes we need an easier experience. This winter, take a break from the gnarly single track, grab some friends and family, and explore a new-to-you location in Bald Eagle State Forest!

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Reach The Top: An Introduction To Spruce Gap Trail In Rothrock State Forest, PA

Reach The Top: An Introduction To Spruce Gap Trail In Rothrock State Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

A classic climb in Rothrock State Forest, which is ideal for those training for any of the ever-so-popular trail challenges that occur throughout the year. Fitness fanatics, mountain runners, and those looking to enjoy the outdoors in the middle of winter will love this trail! You may hate this climb or love this climb, but no matter what, you will gain a sense of accomplishment every time you complete this climb!

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Tussey Mountain Loop: A Winter Fitness Loop In Rothrock State Forest, PA

Tussey Mountain Loop: A Winter Fitness Loop In Rothrock State Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

Rothrock State Forest boasts almost 300 miles of trails open year-round to help you stay fit and/or prepare for longer summer vacation adventures. We consider the loops below as challenging routes that are easily accessible in winter conditions: These are not the steepest nor the longest loops in the forest, but they are not easy either. Hikers, runners, and mountain bikers will all love the options presented below!

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Tiadaghton Trail Part Two: Waterville to Little Pine State Park, PA

Tiadaghton Trail Part Two: Waterville to Little Pine State Park, PA

January 10, 2020

Tiadaghton Trail runs from Ramsey north to Little Pine State Park in the beautiful Pine Creek Valley. The northern half of the trail, described here, is just as rewarding for hikers as the southern half. This trail awes visitors with beautiful views any time of year, so head to Pine Creek and and check out this trail!

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Rock Run Trail System: Enjoying Moshannon State Forest, PA, on Skis

Rock Run Trail System: Enjoying Moshannon State Forest, PA, on Skis

January 10, 2020

Originally built as a cross-country ski trail system with help from Ralph Seeley and Tom Thwiates, this trail system is also part of the Allegheny Front Trail (backpacking loop), and includes orange, yellow, and blue-blazed trails. This is a beautiful, but remote and advanced cross country ski trail, so if you're looking for some adventurous terrain, the 8-mile or 12-mile loops are perfect! Beginners can also enjoy this area!

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Six Mile Run South: A Winter Day Hike In Moshannon State Forest, PA

Six Mile Run South: A Winter Day Hike In Moshannon State Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

Get outside to enjoy evergreen trees while discovering trails near Black Moshannon State Park! Snow or no snow? Doesn't much matter! It's always a great time to grab your Moshannon Lizard Map and follow along on a short adventure along Six Mile Run that includes green leaves and clear streams all year long - and often a beautiful winter blanket of snow!

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Exploring the Northern Frontier of Bald Eagle State Forest: Millheim to Mile Run, PA

Exploring the Northern Frontier of Bald Eagle State Forest: Millheim to Mile Run, PA

January 10, 2020

Purple Lizard takes you on a drive through the backroads of Bald Eagle State Forest, one of the most remote forests in Pennsylvania.

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Winter Adventure Getaways in Moshannon State Forest, PA

Winter Adventure Getaways in Moshannon State Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

Winter has again come to Pennsylvania this year. We've had substantial snowfall, and the long term forecast is showing cold weather for the next several weeks! Now is the time to call and reserve that long winter weekend getaway to play in the snow in Northcentral PA. Below, we have a few options for you to consider along with some fun teaser pics to get you into the winter mood!

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Snyder Middleswarth Natural Area: A National Natural Landmark in Bald Eagle Forest, PA

Snyder Middleswarth Natural Area: A National Natural Landmark in Bald Eagle Forest, PA

January 10, 2020

Once a state park that is now a National Natural Landmark, Snyder Middleswarth Natural Area is a truly delightful location to explore in Central PA. This area, which is adjacent to Tall Timbers Natural Area, is renowned for its old growth forest of hemlock, pine, and birch trees. This part of Bald Eagle State Forest is it within a 90 minute drive for most visitors from the State College, Lock Haven, Lewisburg, and Harrisburg areas. 

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The Icebox Incident: A Lesson in Deciding When to Go Home or Keep Going

The Icebox Incident: A Lesson in Deciding When to Go Home or Keep Going

January 10, 2020

As winter makes one last stand with a few more inches of snow and some blustery winds, we sit back to reflect on lessons learned from this season's outdoor adventures. One of these lessons is the methodology of deciding whether or not to cut a trip short. We experienced this scenario in real time during a two-day (planned as a three-day) weekend backpacking trip on the Black Forest Trail near Slate Run, Pennsylvania.

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Winter Wonderland: Dolly Sods Wilderness, West Virginia

Winter Wonderland: Dolly Sods Wilderness, West Virginia

January 10, 2020

Lizard seeker Eriks Perkons recently completed an overnight winter backpacking trip in Dollys Sods Wilderness Area, West Virginia. This was his first time exploring this area. Even though winter clouds and an oncoming winter storm blocked the vistas, he still had a great time! Read about his trip below.

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Caught In The Hook: Pennsylvania's Largest Natural Area

Caught In The Hook: Pennsylvania's Largest Natural Area

January 10, 2020

The Hook Natural Area is PA's largest Natural Area, and offers a plethora of great adventure. How does one enjoy this area? Read along and let The Department of Adventure lead the way!

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Plan a Festive Holiday Outdoor Adventure

Plan a Festive Holiday Outdoor Adventure

December 23, 2019

Enjoying the outdoors with friends and family is a great way to celebrate the holidays!  Add some outdoor adventure to your family traditions this year.

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