The Mid State Trail runs 327 miles from the Maryland border to the New York border, through the ridge and valley of the Appalachian Mountains and the Allegheny Plateau in Central Pennsylvania. It has been called “The Wildest Trail in Pennsylvania.”
I’m not sure why, but my guess is that it has to do with some steep hills. And by steep, I mean: What the heck! I have this vision that when the trail planners were laying out the trail, they would be down here, where they were, and they would look up there, where they wanted to be. They would turn to each other and say, “What’s the hardest, steepest, most challenging way we can build this trail to get from here to there?” They would answer that question by building the trail in the hardest, steepest, most challenging way. Clearly they had never heard of switchbacks.
My backpacking partner Martin and I did a three day section of this trail in the area of State College, in the middle of Pennsylvania.
Three days. It almost killed us. What fun!