Exploring Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park

Hawk Falls Pennsylvania Hickory Run State Park

Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park is a relatively easy half-mile waterfall hike off of Route 534 in Carbon County.

Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in October, 2021.
Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in October, 2021.

The GPS coordinates for the Hawk Falls parking area are 41.01073, -75.63397.

Map to Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park
Map to Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park

Hiking to Hawk Falls

From the parking area, follow the yellow-blazed trail which runs parallel to Hawk Run, crossing over the stream via a bridge just above the falls.

Bridge along the Hawk Falls Trail at HIckory Run State Park.
Bridge along the Hawk Falls Trail.

As you near the top of Hawk Falls you’ll see an offshoot trail to your right.

That offshoot trail takes you a dozen yards or so to the vantage point pictured below.

Top view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park
Top view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park

Getting Below Hawk Falls

To get the best views of Hawk Falls, you’ll want to hop back on the main trail and follow it downstream.

Hawk Falls Trail at HIckory Run State Park in October, 2021.
Hawk Falls Trail at Hickory Run State Park in October, 2021.

When the trail reaches Mud Run, bear right and follow the trail towards Hawk Run as it hooks back up in a “J” fashion, towards the base of the Hawk Falls.

Hawk Falls in Carbon County Pennsylvania
Hawk Falls in Carbon County Pennsylvania

Hawk Falls is in the neighborhood of 25 feet tall, especially if you count the lower tier in your calculation.

Downstream view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park
Downstream view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park

Hawk Run and Hawk Falls are named after the Hawk family that once farmed the land near the parking area.

Springtime view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park
Springtime view of Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park

The trail from Route 534 to the base of the falls is part of what was once a wagon trail.

Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in Pennsylvania
Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in Pennsylvania

In October, Hawk Falls is a great place to photograph “leaf swirls”.

Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in Carbon County, PA.
Hawk Falls at Hickory Run State Park in Carbon County, PA.

The return hike is a simple matter of backtracking the half-mile from the base of the falls to your vehicle.

Roots along the Hawk Falls Trail at Hickory Run State Park.
Exposed tree roots along the Hawk Falls Trail.

Other Waterfalls at Hickory Run State Park

There are two other man-made water features worth checking out at Hickory Run State Park.

Stametz Dam in October at Hickory Run State Park.
Stametz Dam in October at Hickory Run State Park.

Both of these man-made waterfalls can be accessed from a parking area along Route 534, north of the Hawk Falls parking area.

Hickory Run State Park map showing the locations of the Chapel and Stametz Dam.
Hickory Run State Park map showing the locations of the Chapel and Stametz Dam.

The first of those water features is Chapel Falls on Hickory Run.

The Chapel at Hickory Run State Park
Chapel Falls at Hickory Run State Park.

The second water feature is the man-made Stametz Dam, along the Shades of Death Trail.

Stametz Dam Spillway along the Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park
Stametz Dam Spillway along the Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park

Despite the ominous-sounding name, the Shades of Death Trail is actually one of the most enjoyable hikes at Hickory Run State Park.

The Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park.
The Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park.

Man-made or not, the spillway on Stametz Dam is an impressive sight as you approach from downstream.

Stametz Dam along the Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park.
Shades of Death Trail at Hickory Run State Park

This 15 foot tall water feature is an extremely popular spot at Hickory Run State Park, so plan on having company if you visit on a weekend or during the summer months.

Stametz Dam at Hickory Run State Park
Stametz Dam at Hickory Run State Park

Nearby Attractions

Exploring Hickory Run State Park in Carbon County gives you an in-depth look at the best things to see and do at this 15,990-acre recreational area.

A lone tree standing in the Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.
A lone tree standing in the Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.

From massive Ice Age-era boulder fields to spectacular scenic vistas, there is SO MUCH to see at Hickory Run State Park!

Fireline Trail Vista in the northwestern corner of HIckory Run State Park.
Fireline Trail Vista in the northwestern corner of Hickory Run State Park.

Tobyhanna Falls is just a few miles east of Hawk Falls, in neighboring Monroe County.

Tobyhanna Falls in the PA Pocono Mountains

Little Shickshinny Falls is a beautiful 25-foot tall waterfall located on State Game Lands 260 in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

Little Shickshinny Falls on a sunny afternoon.
Little Shickshinny Falls on a sunny afternoon.

Riding the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway is a great way to see the Lehigh Gorge and historic Jim Thorpe, PA.

The Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway in Jim Thorpe, PA.
The Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway in Jim Thorpe, PA.

Further east in the Delaware Water Gap, Raymondskill Falls is billed as the “tallest waterfall in Pennsylvania“.

Raymondskill Falls in Pennsylvania
Upper and middle tiers of Raymondskill Falls in Pike County PA.

Further north in Scranton, Nay Aug Falls is an easy to get to waterfall within a city park.

Nay Aug Falls on Roaring Brook in Lackawanna County
Nay Aug Falls on Roaring Brook in Lackawanna County

Be sure to check out 25 Must-See Waterfalls in the Poconos for an in-depth look at many of eastern Pennsylvania’s finest waterfalls.

Waterfall along Upper Hornsbeck Trail in Pike County Pennsylvania
Waterfall along Upper Hornsbeck Trail in Pike County Pennsylvania

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

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