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Musser/Shingletown Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.0 (1) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Great Views and a Roman Tower


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Map Key

7.7

Miles

12.5

KM

88%

Runnable

2,199' 670 m

High

1,148' 350 m

Low

1,361' 415 m

Up

1,367' 417 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

43%

Max Grade (23°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · Views · Wildlife

Overview

Run from Musser Gap to Shingletown Gap and back. Pass several ridgetop vistas and a Roman Tower. This route is a great day run, but there are several options to add mileage if you're looking to do an overnight trip.

Need to Know

Portions of the trail follow rocky, technical terrain. Watch for rattlesnakes, especially along the rocky outcrops and vistas.

Description

Begin the run at the Musser Gap parking lot. Run past the gate and follow the wide, gravel path of the Musser Gap Trail through field edge and into the forest. After crossing a bridge bear to the left and continue up the dirt road-like hill on Musser Gap. At the next intersection, bear left and continue until coming to the intersection with the Mountain Mist Trail on the powerline.

Cross the gravel path, through the weeds, and continue on the yellow-blazed Musser Gap Trail. The trail starts to climb steep, singletrack, rocky terrain until intersecting with the Mid-State Trail at the top of the ridge. At the intersection of the Mid-State Trail you'll see the first of 5-6 vistas along this route.

Make a left and follow the orange-blazed Mid-State Trail in an Easterly direction. Follow the ridgeline of the MST on technical, rocky terrain, passing several more South-facing vistas. After approximately 2 miles make a left onto the blue-blazed side trail leading to the Roman Tower. The Roman Tower is a 6ft high stone structure that you are able to climb into and have a seat, pretending to be a Roman emperor while overlooking Mt. Nittany. Of course it wasn't really built by the Romans, but it's still pretty cool.

Backtrack slightly towards the MST and make a right just before the intersection following the blue-blazes of the Downer Trail. The Downer Trail is a steep, technical down hill leading into the Shingletown Gap area. Once the trail begins to level a bit, make a left onto the Red-White Trail. Follow the Red-White blazes through some easy terrain and make a left at the next trail intersection followed by an immediate right onto the Blue-White Trail. The Blue-White trail leads up some steep terrain until it gains a ridge at the intersection of the Mountain Mist Trail.

Make a left and follow the ridgeline in a Westerly direction for approximately 3/4 of a mile until coming to the Highline Vista, which overlooks the State College area. Follow the powerline down the dirt access road until it circles back to the Musser Gap Trail. Make a right and follow the wide path down the hill and back to the parking lot.

If time and energy allows, you can run the Huckleberry Loop to Lion's Valley Vista and then down the Frog Hollow Trail before returning to the Musser Gap Trail and the parking lot. Combine some of the Shingletown Gap trails for a longer day run or overnight backpack trip.

Flora & Fauna

Deer, Turkey, Bear, Rattlesnakes

Contacts

Shared By:

Jason Erdman

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 1 vote

#4069

Overall
  4.0 from 1 vote
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Recommended Route Rankings

#100

in Pennsylvania

#4,069

Overall
16 Views Last Month
16 Since Apr 19, 2021
Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

The Roman Tower
Apr 19, 2021 near Boalsburg, PA
Vista Along MST
Apr 19, 2021 near Pine Gr…, PA
Technical terrain
Apr 19, 2021 near Boalsburg, PA
Highline vista
Apr 19, 2021 near Pine Gr…, PA

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