On March 28, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn visited Rothrock State Forest to highlight plans for more than 50 miles of multiuse, single-track trails as an example of the type of work that will be expanded as the result of Governor Shapiro’s budget proposal.

“Trails allow people to enjoy the outdoors, and they are the backbone of Pennsylvania’s $17 billion outdoor recreation economy — but building and sustaining trails is challenging work that requires significant investment and partnerships,” Dunn said. “Thank you to all of the partners who see the health and economic benefits of supporting this work. We hope to do more of it across the Commonwealth with the funding outlined in Governor Shapiro’s proposed budget.”

Governor Josh Shapiro’s 2024-25 budget proposal includes another strong investment in the stewardship of Pennsylvania’s natural resources, with $8.5 million new funding to build trails and $5 million to expand the Pennsylvania Outdoor Corps program.

“Rothrock State Forest is full of so much natural beauty, and this new trail system will expand Penn State students’ access to incredible outdoor educational and recreational resources,” said Mike Toolan, Musser Gap Conservation Director for Penn State’s Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center. “I am excited to see state and local partners working hard to connect the community to our unique natural spaces. With their help, we will continue to further the University’s land-grant mission by connecting people to nature and encouraging them to act as environmental stewards.”

Rothrock State Forest is named for Dr. Joseph Trimble Rothrock, a native of Mifflin County and the Commonwealth’s first forestry commissioner. He is recognized as the “Father of Forestry” in Pennsylvania.

Visit DCNR’s website for more information on Rothrock State Forest and check out DCNR’s Calendar of Events​ for events on public lands.

(Post adapted from a press release shared by DCNR on March 28)