15 Must-See Pennsylvania Rock Formations

The author in one of the canyons formed by massive rock formations along the Fred Woods Trail.

There’s a reason hikers jokingly refer to Pennsylvania as Rocksylvania – PA is home to some fantastic rock formations!

Indian Wells Overlook along the Mid State Trail in Centre County, Pennsylvania.
Indian Wells Overlook along the Mid State Trail in Centre County, Pennsylvania.

Some are incredibly tall.

Standing at the base of Rimrock Overlook along the Rimrock Trail in the Allegheny National Forest.
Standing at the base of Rimrock Overlook along the Rimrock Trail in the Allegheny National Forest.

Other are amazingly wide.

The massive Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.
The massive Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.

But ALL make for memorable day trips!

Some of the fascinating tree roots at Bilger's Rocks in Clearfield County.
Bilger’s Rocks in Clearfield County.

So enjoy this list of 15 must-see Pennsylvania rock formations, and use the blue text links to get directions and plan your own day trips as well!

Looking in the direction of Ligonier from Wolf Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.
Looking in the direction of Ligonier from Wolf Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.

1. Bilger’s Rocks

Bilger’s Rocks is part of a 170-acre community park, open to the public and located just minutes from Curwensville in central Clearfield County.

Entrance to Bilgers Rocks along Bilgers Rocks Road.
Entrance to Bilger’s Rocks along Bilger’s Rocks Road.

Billed by the Bilger’s Rocks Association (the group that owns and maintains the park) as “Pennsylvania’s Best Rock Outcropping”, this 300 million year-old natural “rock city” is a must-see for fans of geology and all things megalithic!

One of the many passageways through the boulders at Bilger's Rocks in Clearfield County, PA.
One of the many passageways through the boulders at Bilger’s Rocks in Clearfield County.

Although there are specific trails you can follow, it’s fun to wander around and explore Bilger’s Rocks freestyle as well.

Climbing through a rocky jungle at Bilger's Rocks in Clearfield County.
Climbing through a rocky jungle at Bilger’s Rocks in Clearfield County.

2. Beartown Rocks

Beartown Rocks in the Clear Creek State Forest features an exceptional scenic overlook perched high atop a “rock city” dating back to the last Ice Age!

Beartown Rocks Overlook in the Clear Creek State Forest.
Beartown Rocks Overlook in the Clear Creek State Forest.

Beartown Rocks is essentially a roadside attraction, meaning you can park right next to it and take a leisurely stroll through this “rock city” in Jefferson County.

Climbing on boulders at Beartown Rocks in Jefferson County, Pennsylvania.
Climbing on boulders at Beartown Rocks in Jefferson County.

There is no “official” trail through Beartown Rocks, you can simply make your way through the rock city as you see fit.

Looking straight down from the Beartown Rocks Overlook in Jefferson County.
Looking straight down from the Beartown Rocks Overlook in Jefferson County.

3. Fred Woods Trail Rock City

The “rock city” along the Fred Woods Trail in Cameron County is a labyrinth of moss-covered canyons and crevices formed by gigantic boulders.

Hiking through the rock formations along the Fred Woods Trail in Cameron County
The author at the rock city along the Fred Woods Trail.

Equally massive hemlocks seem to defy Nature as they grow out of and up the sides of the rock formations.

Hemlock growing out of a rock formation along the Fred Woods Trail.
Hemlock growing out of a rock formation along the Fred Woods Trail.

People have been coming to see these sights along what is now the Fred Woods Trail for many, many years, as evidenced by rock carvings dating back 120 years!

Carving from 1901 along the Fred Woods Trail in the Elk State Forest.
Carving from 1901 along the Fred Woods Trail in the Elk State Forest.

4. The Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park

The Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park is touted as the best example of a boulder landscape in the eastern United States.

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.

The Boulder Field is 400-feet wide, 1,800-feet long, and 10 to 12-feet deep.

Fall foliage around the Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.
Fall foliage around the Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park.

The Boulder Field at Hickory Run State Park was designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1967.

Hickory Run Boulder Field National Natural Landmark plaque.
Hickory Run Boulder Field National Natural Landmark plaque.

5. Moyer’s Rock

Moyer’s Rock is a massive rock formation at Lehigh Gorge State Park in Carbon County.

Moyer's Rock Overlook above the Lehigh Gorge Rail Trail at Glen Onoko.
Moyer’s Rock Overlook above the Lehigh Gorge Rail Trail at Glen Onoko.

From the top of Moyer’s Rock, you can look out over the Lehigh River and the Lehigh Gorge Rail Trail.

Moyer's Rock Overlook on an October afternoon at Lehigh Gorge State Park.
Moyer’s Rock Overlook on an October afternoon at Lehigh Gorge State Park.

While below you can literally walk THROUGH Moyer’s Rock via the abandoned Turn Hole Tunnel, built in 1866.

Soot on the roof of the abandoned Turn Hole Tunnel at Lehigh Gorge State Park.
Soot on the roof of the abandoned Turn Hole Tunnel at Lehigh Gorge State Park.

6. Jakes Rocks

 Jakes Rocks is located in the Warren County portion of the Allegheny National Forest.

Boulders at Jakes Rocks surrounded by fall foliage in October, 2021.
Boulders at Jakes Rocks surrounded by fall foliage in October, 2021.

Hiking through the boulder field known as Jakes Rocks leads to a fabulous view of the Allegheny Reservoir.

Approaching Jakes Rocks Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.
Approaching Jakes Rocks Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.

The trail to Jakes Rocks Overlook is not blazed, but is well-worn and easy to follow.

The view from Jakes Rocks Overlook on October 6, 2021.
Jakes Rocks Overlook in Warren County.

7. Rimrock Overlook

Rimrock Overlook in Warren County offers visitors outstanding views of Kinzua Bay and the Allegheny National Forest which surrounds it.

Viewing area at Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.
Viewing area at Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.

One unique feature of Rimrock Overlook is that you can follow a staircase down through the rocks that form the overlook!

Staricase between the boulders at Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.
Staircase between the boulders at Rimrock Overlook in the Allegheny National Forest.

The passageway through the rocks is narrow, but there is a handrail to help you navigate the steps.

Stairway through the boulders at Rimrock Overlook in Warren County Pennsylvania.
Stairway through the boulders at Rimrock Overlook in Warren County.

8. Chimney Rocks

Chimney Rocks is an impressive rock formation with several associated scenic overlooks in Blair County.

Autumn in Blair County at Chimney Rocks.
Autumn in Blair County at Chimney Rocks.

Chimney Rocks derives its name from the tall, chimney-shaped limestone pillars on top of this mountain overlooking Hollidaysburg.

One of the limestone chimneys at Chimney Rocks Park.
One of the “chimneys” at Chimney Rocks near Hollidaysburg in Blair County.

According to local legend, the flat spot on top of one of the limestone “chimneys” was used as a seat/lookout by the local Native American tribal chief, earning it the name “the Chief’s Seat”.

A view of the Chimney Rocks high above Hollidaysburg PA
A view of the Chimney Rocks high above Hollidaysburg, PA.

9. Balanced Rock

A fascinating geologic anomaly caused by thousands of years of erosion, Balanced Rock seems to defy gravity as it hangs above the Trough Creek Gorge in Huntingdon County.

Rusty Glessner at Balanced Rock in Tough Creek State Park.
The author at Balanced Rock.

Once part of a cliff, Balanced Rock is the last remnant of that layer of bedrock, while the rest of that cliff slid into the gorge created by Great Trough Creek.

History of Balanced Rock at Trough Creek State Park in Huntingdon County Pennsylvania
History of Balanced Rock at Trough Creek State Park in Huntingdon County.

When viewed from the Trough Creek Drive, Balanced Rock seems to levitate above the trees below!

View of Balanced Rock from parking area at Trough Creek State Park.
View of Balanced Rock from parking area at Trough Creek State Park.

10. Beam Rocks

Beam Rocks is one of the largest rock outcroppings and most scenic mountain vistas in the Laurel Highlands of western Pennsylvania!

Beam Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.
Beam Rocks in the Forbes State Forest.

Located in the Forbes State Forest near the Westmoreland / Somerset County line, it offers a fantastic 180° view from high above the treetops and the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail below.

Summer blooms at Beam Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.
Summer blooms at Beam Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.

In between several of the enormous boulders at Beam Rocks are crevices large enough to walk through.

A crevice between rock formations at Beam Rocks.
A crevice between rock formations at Beam Rocks.

11. Wolf Rocks

Wolf Rocks is another large rock formation and overlook in the Forbes State Forest.

Wolf Rocks Overlook on an autumn morning in the Laurel Highlands.
Wolf Rocks Overlook on a late autumn morning in the Laurel Highlands.

Wolf Rocks offers a 180 degree view of Linn Run State Park and Westmoreland County.

Springtime at Wolf Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest
Springtime at Wolf Rocks Overlook in the Forbes State Forest.

The rocks that make up Wolf Rocks provide plenty of places to sit and take in the view.

Wolf Rocks in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania.
Wolf Rocks in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania.

12. Laurel Caverns

Laurel Caverns is billed as “Pennsylvania’s Largest Cave”, and home to to some of PA’s best UNDERGROUND rock formations!

The overhead Grand Canyon of Laurel Caverns.
The overhead Grand Canyon of Laurel Caverns.

First discovered by Native Americans thousands of years ago, Laurel Caverns has been a popular “show cave” for many decades now.

Pillar Rock inside Laurel Caverns.
Pillar Rock inside Laurel Caverns.

Laurel Caverns is a sandstone cave (possibly the largest in the world), and therefore you won’t see any stalactites here, as you would in a limestone cave.

Chandelier Hall at Laurel Caverns.
Chandelier Hall at Laurel Caverns.

But there is an underground waterfall!

Calico Falls inside Laurel Caverns.
Calico Falls inside Laurel Caverns.

13. Baughman Rock

Baughman Rock at Ohiopyle State Park is a mountaintop rock formation high above the town of Ohiopyle.

Rusty Glessner photographing the sunrise along Baughman Trail at Ohiopyle State Park in Fayette County Pennsylvania.

Baughman Rock is also one of the most spectacular mountain vistas in the Laurel Highlands region.

Taking in the view from Baughman Rock Vista during Winterfest.
Taking in the view from Baughman Rock Vista during Winterfest.

Baughman Rock offers tremendous bang for your buck – miles of views just a few yards from a roadside parking area.

The fence at Baughman Rock Overlook.
The fence at Baughman Rock Overlook.

14. Baughman Rocks

Baughman Rocks (not to be confused with Baughman Rock) is a fascinating rock formation located on Mount Davis, the highest point in Pennsylvania.

The view of Baughman Rocks on Mount Davis from the observation deck.
Baughman Rocks on Mount Davis.

Baughman Rocks has a rather macabre history associated with it, which you can read about on an informational sign nearby.

History of Baughman Rocks on Mount Davis in Somerset County
The somewhat ominous history of Baughman Rocks on Mount Davis in Somerset County.

Upon closer inspection you can certainly see how a body could “disappear” in these deep crevices between the boulders.

Baughman Rocks in Somerset County Pennsylvania.
Baughman Rocks in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

15. Indian Wells

Indian Wells is an exceptional rock formation and scenic vista located right along the Mid State Trail near the Centre-Huntingdon county line.

Indian Wells Overlook along the Mid State Trail in early November.
Indian Wells Overlook along the Mid State Trail in early November.

Indian Wells is nearly 130 yards wide.

Indian Wells Overlook in Centre County, PA on a November morning.
Indian Wells Overlook in Centre County, PA on a November morning.

And while it’s beautiful year-round, the views from Indian Wells in October are some of the finest in Centre County.

Rusty Glessner at Indian Wells Overlook in Centre County Pennsylvania

So there you have it – 15 must-see Pennsylvania rock formations!

Taking in the scene at Bilger's Rocks in Clearfield County, Pennsylvania.
Taking in the scene at Bilger’s Rocks in Clearfield County.

I hope you found some new spots to explore here, and feel free to share some of YOUR favorite PA rock formations in the comments below.

Tree roots clinging to a rock formation along the Fred Woods Trail.
Tree roots clinging to a rock formation along the Fred Woods Trail in Cameron County.

If you’re looking for more PA natural attractions to explore, check out 20 Must-See Pennsylvania Waterfalls.

Fall foliage at Cucumber Falls at Ohiopyle State Park.
Fall foliage around Cucumber Falls at Ohiopyle State Park.

Or maybe scenic overlooks are more your style – check out 50 of the Best Scenic Overlooks in PA.

Hikers taking on the view at Hyner Run State Park.
Hikers taking on the view at Hyner Run State Park.

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Rusty Glessner is an award-winning photographer, lifelong Pennsylvanian, and creator of the PA Bucket List travel blog.

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