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  1. #1
    Registered User twilight's Avatar
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    Default Parking at PA 72

    Can some one please provide information if there is a hiker parking area on PA 72 in Swatara Gap? I vaguely remember something there but I can't be sure. It's been 7 years since I've been in that area.


    Twilight

  2. #2
    Bloomer Bloomer's Avatar
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    There is parking on 72 on the shoulder by the footbridge. Also, south about a quarter mile, make the first left, and there is a smaller parking lot. This road is closed to through traffic because of the flooding, however, both places are safe parking. I have left my vehicle overnight at these locations without any problem.

  3. #3
    Registered User twilight's Avatar
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    Thanks Bloomer!!!

  4. #4
    HIKER TRASH birchy's Avatar
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    If you park at the trail crossing lot on Rt 72, you should inform park officials at Swatara S.P.

  5. #5

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bloomer View Post
    There is parking on 72 on the shoulder by the footbridge. Also, south about a quarter mile, make the first left, and there is a smaller parking lot. This road is closed to through traffic because of the flooding, however, both places are safe parking. I have left my vehicle overnight at these locations without any problem.
    I've left my car at the small lot without a problem for a week and would recommend using that if it is open. Road parking is possible but it was filled the other time I was at 72, so just be aware you may not get a space, especially if you arrive in the late afternoon. And like birchy said, make sure you call the rangers at Swatara to let them know how long you'll be parking there.

  7. #7
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    There is a new parking lot in Swatara State Park, labeled "Trout Run Trailhead," located road-south, compass-east, and Trail-west of the A.T. and the junction of PA 72 and PA 443. This parking lot, unlike the little lot on PA 443 west of PA 72, is paved and plowed, and somewhat larger with a porta-pot. Unsure of overnight parking rules here but one should contact Swatara SP as otherwise noted in the thread. There is a new loop trail from this parking lot - the direction signed "To Appalachian Trail" heads compass west from the lot to the AT at the middle road crossing (the point where the AT goes under PA 443 beside the Trout Run stream. If you are hiking SOBO into St Anthony's Wilderness this new parking lot would save you both a road crossing and wallowing in the mud of the old small lot. If you are going NOBO, parking here and taking the Trout Run trail to the Moon Shine trail (still paved old blocked off PA 443) to the Swatara Rail Trail (despite the name, the trail follows the old mostly still paved road right here, next to the old rail bed still visible in winter) compass-south to the west end of the Waterville Bridge, would save you both a PUD and a road crossing heading Trail-north towards PA 645.

    As you might surmise this area is a bit geographically confusing. Here is the up to date state park map http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/cs/group...cnr_003057.pdf that shows the new Trout Run trailhead, but muffs the actual route of the Trout Run trail that leads from the trailhead to the old road non-rail trails heading back towards the Waterville Bridge. Here is a iPhone-tracked mini-hike that shows the new trailhead access trails more accurately: http://www.trimbleoutdoors.com/ViewTrip/2586831

  8. #8
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    FWIW...I try to do trail magic at that parking lot once a year. I have never seen any broken glass or such so that is a good thing!

  9. #9
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    Note this new parking lot (post #7) is not on The AT but is on a side trail.

  10. #10

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    Several resources (including a map) concerning AT parking here, however, I don't believe it has the new lot.

    http://www.aldha.org/companion/online/.

  11. #11
    Registered User Kaptainkriz's Avatar
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    Doing some research for parking at Swatara Gap - the 443 lot seens to be the one for the AT...anyone familiar with who I should notify for overnight parking?

  12. #12

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    no notification needed to park at 443 lot. There is NOT parking on 72 on the shoulder by the footbridge. No parking signs were posted in 2018.

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