Harrisburg, PA - Today, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn announced that 407 acres will be added to the Pinchot State Forest District near Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County.
Donated by the Earth Conservancy, the land provides connectivity to adjacent sections of Pinchot State Forest, including a wild trout stream and its Seven Tubs Recreation Area, and supports completion of a final portion of the D&L Trail.
“With its proximity to existing Pinchot state forestlands, and the watershed protection and public access it provides, this tract is an invaluable acquisition for Pennsylvania’s state forest system,” Dunn said. “The Earth Conservancy has again proven itself a strong ally in our bid to expand and enhance Pinchot State Forest.”
Located in Laurel Run Borough and Plains and Wilkes-Barre townships, the newly acquired land adjoins the Deep Hollow Tract of the Pinchot State Forest. The property includes a section of the former Delaware and Lehigh railroad bed, under development by the North Branch Land Trust to be part of the 165-mile D&L Trail. Eventually connecting the Seven Tubs Recreation Area with the East Northampton Street in Wilkes-Barre Township, this nearly 6-mile section of rail trail will be donated to the Bureau of Forestry.
“We are extremely pleased to have collaborated on this project,” said Earth Conservancy President and CEO Mike Dziak. “Earth Conservancy intends to conserve 10,000 acres for recreation and greenspace, as part of its mission. This tract not only moves us closer to our goal, but also adds a critical piece needed to complete the D&L Trail. We’re excited to be part of something that will have so many benefits, not just for the region, but for outdoor enthusiasts across the commonwealth.”
The second longest rail trail in the state, D&L Trail stretches north along the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor from Bristol, Bucks County, to Mountain Top, Luzerne County.
Pinchot State Forest honors the late Gifford Pinchot, pioneering American forester who served as first chief of the United States Forest Service from 1905 until 1910. He also served two terms as Pennsylvania governor. The district bearing his name includes 49,081 acres of state forestland in Lackawanna, Luzerne, Wyoming, Susquehanna, and Wayne counties.
Details on Pinchot and Pennsylvania’s 19 other state forest districts can be found at the DCNR website (select State Forests).
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