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Oil Creek State Park

305 State Park Road
Oil City, PA 16301

814-676-5915

The Oil Creek Valley is the site of the world’s first commercial oil well. Oil Creek State Park tells the story of the early petroleum industry by interpreting oil boomtowns, oil wells, and early transportation. Scenic Oil Creek carves a valley of deep hollows, steep hillsides, and wetlands.

Hiking at Oil Creek State Park

52 miles of trails

The hiking and interpretive trails lead visitors through areas rich in historic and scenic interest. Trail maps and information are available at the park office.

Mountain bikes and horses are prohibited on hiking trails.

If you find yourself lost, travel downhill to the bicycle trail or Oil Creek and follow either upstream to Drake Well or downstream to the park office at Petroleum Centre.

The railroad running along Oil Creek is an active line. Caution: Stay off of the tracks at all times.

Blood Farm Interpretive Trail
0.5 mile

Spend 30 minutes walking through the 440-acre Blood Farm oil lease. This farm produced more oil than all of the other farms in the oil region in 1861 and 1862. Learn about 15 years of frantic drilling, gushing oil, and devastating fires. Interpretive signs throughout the trail will guide your tour.

Delzell Trail
0.7 mile

Along the 0.7-mile long trail can be seen changes that have happened throughout the valley.

Petroleum Centre Walking Tour
0.5 mile

Petroleum Centre flourished from 1863 to 1870 on its twin livelihoods of oil and entertainment. This company town had no government, law enforcement, sanitation, or public works. It was reputed to the “wickedest town east of the Mississippi!” Start at the Petroleum Centre Amphitheater for this 45-minute self-guiding tour.

Wildcat Hollow Trails
Hike the “wickedest hollow east of the Mississippi!” on these short, easy hiking trails.

Geology Trail
1 mile

Large glacial boulders and beautiful views can be explored while wondering this scenic trail.

Forestry Trail
0.8 mile

A wide variety of hard- and softwood trees can be viewed along this trail. Many trees are well over 100 years old.

Oil History Trail
0.25 mile

Relics from the oil boom can still be found along this quiet walk, including a rare “Wolf Rig.”

Wetland Trail
0.8 mile

Enjoy a relaxing stroll around one of Oil Creeks wetland areas. A wide variety of interesting plant and animal species call this area home.

Gerard Hiking Trail
36 miles

This 36-mile long trail encompasses the entire park. The main trail is marked with yellow paint blazes.

For shorter day hikes, use the five connecting loops blazed in white.

Parking areas are available at several access points.

Scenic vistas, waterfalls, and historic sites are prevalent along the trail.

Two overnight hike-in shelter areas (Cow Run and Wolfkiel Run) are along the trail. Each area contains tent sites, six Adirondack-style shelters with fireplaces, restrooms, and seasonal water supply. A fee and reservations are mandatory for use of these areas and overnight usage is limited to one night per shelter site.

Fires are only permitted in camp stoves, fireplaces, or designated locations and must be extinguished when unattended. Standing timber and shrubs must not be defaced. Camping is permitted in shelter areas only. Other special regulations pertain to these areas. Contact the park office for further information.

Pets are permitted at the shelter areas. Please contact the park office for guidelines for pets.

Picnicking at Oil Creek State Park

Blood Farm Day Use Area and Egbert Farm Day Use Area are on the southern side of the park and are ideal settings for an enjoyable outing.

The day use areas have:

Picnic tables
Charcoal grills
Drinking fountains
Restrooms
Playfields
A playground is in the Egbert Farm Day Use Area.

Picnic pavilions that may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved picnic pavilions are free on a first-come, first-served basis.

Stay the Night at Oil Creek State Park

Backpacking
The 36-mile long Gerard Hiking Trail encompasses the entire park. The main trail is marked with yellow paint blazes.

For shorter day hikes, use the five connecting loops blazed in white.

Parking areas are available at several access points.

Scenic vistas, waterfalls, and historic sites are prevalent along the trail.

Two overnight, hike-in shelter areas (Cow Run and Wolfkiel Run) are along the trail. Each area contains:

Tent sites
Six Adirondack-style shelters with fireplaces
Restrooms
Seasonal water supply
A fee and reservations are mandatory for use of these areas and overnight usage is limited to one night per shelter site.

Fires are only permitted in camp stoves, fireplaces, or designated locations and must be extinguished when unattended.

Standing timber and shrubs must not be defaced.

Camping is permitted in shelter areas only. Other special regulations pertain to these areas.

Contact the park office for further information.

Pets are permitted at the shelter areas. Please contact the park office for guidelines for pets.

Kayaking and Canoeing at Oil Creek State Park

Oil Creek offers a scenic float and is classed as a beginner’s creek under normal conditions.

Water levels can change rapidly and boaters should call the park office for current water conditions.

Generally, the canoeing season is from March to early June.

Fishing at Oil Creek State Park

Oil Creek is known for its bass and trout. Three streams provide brook trout fishing:

Boughton Run
Toy Run
Jones Run
Two delayed harvest, artificial lures only areas cover 2.5 miles of Oil Creek.

Hunting at Oil Creek State Park

During established season, about 6,800 acres are open to:

Hunting
Trapping
Training of dogs
Common game species are:

Rabbit
Deer
Squirrel
Turkey
Black bear
Ruffed grouse
Hunting woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, is prohibited. Dog training is only permitted from the day following Labor Day through March 31 in designated hunting areas.

Biking at Oil Creek State Park

9.7 miles of trails

A paved bicycle trail through scenic Oil Creek Gorge is a major park attraction.

Trailheads are at Petroleum Centre in the south and Drake Well Museum in the north.

Trail users may rent bicycles at the park office.

Picnic tables, benches, rain shelters, and restrooms are at key points along the trail. Historical markers detail special events of the 1860s oil boom era.

Sledding at Oil Creek State Park

The sledding hill is in Petroleum Centre across from the park office in the Egbert Day Use Area. Parking is adjacent to the hill. Vault toilets are nearby. When open, the park office has modern restrooms.

Also nearby are:

Playground
Charcoal grills
Picnic tables
Pavilion for rent, or first-come, first-served

Cross-country Skiing at Oil Creek State Park

11.5 miles of trails

A cross-country ski trail complex located between Petroleum Centre and Plumer can be accessed on SR 1004.

A network of 11.5 miles of groomed trails offers beginner and intermediate skiers a variety of skiing experiences. Track is set on all trails in the complex.

A fee is charged for a ski pass, which is required in the complex.

The area includes a large parking area, warming hut, and restrooms.

Mountain bikes are prohibited on ski trails.

Most of the trails utilize old oil lease and lumber roads and are generally about 10 feet wide.

Six connecting trails are blazed in white.

Blue Loop
2.6 miles, easiest skiing

Suitable for beginning skiers, Blue Loop is relatively flat with one steep section.

Green Loop
0.6 miles, easiest skiing

Green Loop is suitable for beginning skiers.

Red Loop
5.8 miles, more difficult skiing

This very challenging trail has several steep hills, and some sharp turns, and also leads to a very impressive scenic view.

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