Exploring Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County

An autumn afternoon at Big Mountain Overlook in the Buchanan State Forest

Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County is an expansive, almost-roadside vista in southcentral Pennsylvania.

Hikers taking in the view at Big Mountain Overlook near McConnellsburg PA
Visitors taking in the view at Big Mountain Overlook near McConnellsburg PA

Getting there is simple, and it makes for a excellent quick pit-stop when travelling along Route 30 (AKA the Old Lincoln Highway) in this part of PA.

Big Mountain Overlook in the Buchanan State Forest on an August afternoon.
Big Mountain Overlook in the Buchanan State Forest on an August afternoon.

Big Mountain Overlook FAQs

Where is Big Mountain Overlook located?

Big Mountain Overlook is located 2.6 miles north of Route 30, at a dead-end on Tower Road (a gravel state forest road).
A map to Big Mountain Overlook and the Tuscarora Summit Hang Glider Launch near McConnellsburg PA

Can I navigate to Big Mountain Overlook by GPS?

Yes – use GPS coordinates 39.95004, -77.93711.
The view from Big Mountain Overlook near Cowans Gap State Park.

Are there any hiking trails near Big Mountain Overlook?

Yes – the 250 mile-long Tuscarora Trail passes right by it.
A hiker takes in the view from Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County PA

How far is Big Mountain Overlook from the parking area along Tower Road?

Approximately 75 yards along a flat, dirt trail.
Big Mountain Overlook in the Buchanan State Forest.

What else is there to see near Big Mountain Overlook?

Tuscarora Summit Hang Glider Launch is located less than 3 miles away, on the opposite side of Route 30.
A paraglider launches from Tuscarora Summit along Route 30 in Fulton County PA

How far is Big Mountain Overlook from Cowans Gap State Park?

Cowans Gap State Park is less than 4 miles north of Big Mountain Overlook, along Aughwick Road.
A fisherman at Cowans Gap State Park.


Visiting Big Mountain Overlook

While the Buchanan State Forest is home to many outstanding scenic overlooks, Big Mountain Overlook is certainly one of the most picturesque.

Big Mountain Overlook near McConnellsburg Pennsylvaia.
Big Mountain Overlook near McConnellsburg Pennsylvaia.

It’s a breathtaking place to enjoy fall foliage, and the fact that it is so close to the road mean virtually anyone can enjoy Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County!

Big Mountain Overlook along Tower Road in Fulton County PA
Big Mountain Overlook along Tower Road in Fulton County, PA.

Winter is equally beautiful at Big Mountain Overlook.

Winter afternoon at Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County Pennsylvania.
Winter afternoon at Big Mountain Overlook in Fulton County.

When the air is crisp and clear on snow-tinged afternoon, the views seem to go on forever at Big Mountain Overlook!

Big Mountain Overlook on a December afternoon.
December afternoon at Big Mountain Overlook.

Nearby Attractions

The Sideling Hill Trailhead for the Abandoned PA Turnpike bike trail is located approximately 12 miles east of Big Mountain Overlook.

Sideling Hill Tunnel on the Abandoned PA Turnpike in September 2020.
Sideling Hill Tunnel on the Abandoned PA Turnpike in September 2020.

Cowans Gap State Park is located less than 4 miles north of Big Mountain Overlook.

Cowans Gap Overlook in Fulton County PA
Cowans Gap Overlook in Fulton County, PA.

The Tuscaroroa Hang Glider Launch is located approximately 3 miles south of Big Mountain Overlook.

A paraglider sails over Tuscarora Summit near the Buchanan State Forest in Fulton County PA
A paraglider sails over Tuscarora Summit near the Buchanan State Forest in Fulton County PA

Buchanan’s Birthplace State Park is home to a large pyramid that marks the birthplace of the James Buchanan, 15th President of the United States.

The pyramid at Buchanan's Birthplace State Park was completed in November 1907.
The pyramid at Buchanan’s Birthplace State Park was completed in November 1907.

The abandoned South Penn Railroad Aqueduct in Fulton County is a 140 year-old, perfectly-preserved remnant of a railroad that never was.

The intricately-crafted South Pennsylvania Railroad Aqueduct in the Buchanan State Forest.
The intricately-crafted South Pennsylvania Railroad Aqueduct in the Buchanan State Forest.

The abandoned Sideling Hill POW Camp in Fulton County was used to house German prisoners of war after the Nazis surrendered in May, 1945.

Inside the General's quarters at the abandoned Sideling Hill POW Camp.
Inside the General’s quarters at the abandoned Sideling Hill POW Camp.

Did you enjoy this article?

If so, be sure to like and follow PA Bucket List on Facebook, Instagram, and/or Pinterest to stay up-to-date on my latest write-ups about the best things to see and do in Pennsylvania!

Click on any of the icons below to get connected to PA Bucket List on social media.


PA Bucket List 2022 Sasquatch Logo

Pennsylvania’s Best Travel Blog!

Rusty Glessner is a professional photographer, lifelong Pennsylvanian, and creator of the PA Bucket List travel blog.