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Topic: Saint Anthony's Wilderness TR, Devils Racecourse Whack< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 27 2013, 7:35 am  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

For quite a while I wanted to explore the Devils Race Course. A rather large Talus Field located in Pennsylvania Saint Anthony’s Wilderness. Saturday November 23rd turned out to be the day I finally achieved this objective


Started out from the large parking area along Pennsylvania route 325, right at the Appalachian Trail crossing. Headed north along the Appalachian Trail for approximately 2 miles or so. At this point there is a distinct trace of an old wood roads that comes in from the hard right. If one looks closely at this trace. You will notice faint yellow blazes leading towards the west.


Looking back towards AT on Yellow Blazed Trail


Left the Appalachian Trail and headed west. After approximately .10 miles the trail arrives at a rather large cairn marking a point where the yellow blazed trail turns sharply left and steeply uphill. There is also a faded double blaze on a tree at this point.


Dbl Yellow blaze and Cairn


Followed the blazes steeply uphill across a talus slope. With some faint blazes visible on the rocks to guide the way.


Yellow blazes on rocks


After approximately .40 miles the Yellow blazes end a rare Saint Anthony’s Wilderness northerly viewpoint. Although it is somewhat obscured by trees. At the viewpoint the yellow blazes end and change to red. There is another large cairn at this point.


Northerly Viewpoint

Continued around a large blow down. That makes it appear that the trail continues no further. But if one walks around the tree, you will notice a very faded red blaze. I last hiked this red blazed trail around three to four years ago. At that point it took some care to follow. Since that time it has gotten much harder to follow. Especially at the point where it cuts sharply back to the west and begins to head off the ridge top. I followed the various sized red blazes for approximately one mile till I lost any more traces of blazes.


When I hiked this trail years ago. I ran across the same thing. Not sure if the trail just ends or makes a hard turn. Again following the remnants of this trail may as well be a bushwhack.

Once I lost any trace of blazes or footpath. I headed in a southerly direction for a few hundred feet and arrived at a small portion of the Devils Race Course rock field, which is separated by woods from the main section.

Started whacking over mossy boulders thru relatively open woods to the main part of the Devils Race Course rock field.


Devils Racecourse


Where I spent the next 35 to 40 minutes scrambling up the center of the .75 mile long talus field.
This has to be one of the larger Talus Slopes in Pennsylvania. Although the width is only 100 yards or so wide. The main part is nearly a mile long. While crossing the rocks I noticed what appeared to be Petrified wood and roots in some of the boulders.


Petrified Roots ?

Once I reached the westerly end of the open rocks.


Devils Racecourse

I headed south for 200 yards or so. To an old woods road, and the former route of the Horse Shoe Trail. Headed trail south on the former HST for 1 mile or so. To a cairn off the right side marking the red blazed, but unsigned Henry Knavber Trail.

Turned right and followed the well maintained and blazed trail back to the Appalachian Trail Junction. The steep descent off of Stony Mountain was a bit tricky. As the footpath was covered by a layer of very slippery leaves. I never fell but did get very close several times.


The attached map shows the route I took on the hike. Solid White line is the Appalachian Trail up Stony Mountain. Dashed Yellow is the Yellow Blazed Trail. Dashed Red is the hard to follow Red Blazed trail (note the northerly viewpoint is at the end of the dashed yellow line, and the start of the dashed red line). Dashed Black line was the route of my whack up Devils Racecourse. Solid Yellow is the old route of the HST. And finally the solid Red Line is the Henry Knavber Trail.

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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 27 2013, 11:36 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Interesting find of another blazed route in SAW.

Henry Knauber, the "Wiconisco Wanderer," deserves not to have his name misspelled on the map (yes I know "they" misspelled it not you). News story from Utah of all places
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 27 2013, 12:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(ki0eh @ Nov. 27 2013, 11:36 am)
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Interesting find of another blazed route in SAW.

Henry Knauber, the "Wiconisco Wanderer," deserves not to have his name misspelled on the map (yes I know "they" misspelled it not you). News story from Utah of all places

I was thinking I had it (Knauber) spelled wrong while writing up the TR, but referenced the AT map

The shape the red blazed trail is in . It will not be too long before it will become another forgotten trail of Saint Anthony's Wilderness.
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 27 2013, 4:24 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Great pics, I've always wanted to check that out too.  Kind of surprising the AT does not include a feature like that since it is so close.  

I heard Rattling Run has cascades and small waterfalls, is that the case?
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 28 2013, 10:59 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(jmitch @ Nov. 27 2013, 4:24 pm)
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Great pics, I've always wanted to check that out too.  Kind of surprising the AT does not include a feature like that since it is so close.  

I heard Rattling Run has cascades and small waterfalls, is that the case?

I've never actually checked our Rattling Run per se. I have crossed over it on an old red balzed trail that runs .90 miles from the Horseshoe Trail at the southerly base of Stony Mountain to the AT (Shown on the KTA AT map for sections 7 and 8 of the AT)

I would assume it would be similar to both Rausch Creek and Gold MIne Run. Both of these creek are perty much a continious cascade type of creek as shown in the pictures below ( Both pictures where tanken  on May 22, 2011 after 5 to 6 inches of rain fell the night before)

DSCN8642
Gold Mine Run



DSCN8649
Rausch Creek
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PostIcon Posted on: Nov. 28 2013, 5:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

Most likely when Earl Shaffer was working with others on the big early-1950's relocation he was wanting to just find a way around Ft Indiantown Gap. It's not easy to tell now but the A.T. was said to be an old carriage road (a bit easier to tell on the north side of Stony Mtn since it was bulldozed out for an old fire tower access) all the way over to Rausch Gap. The early-2000s relocation with the "Beethoven Bridge" it should be noted is on the National Park Service owned former Harrisburg Authority property enclave in SGL 211. As mentioned previously in other contexts the PGC land managers are not motivated by scenic value in footpath location.
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