Raymond B. Winter State Park covers 695 acres of the Ridge and Valley Province in central Pennsylvania. Located within Bald Eagle State Forest, the park lies in a shallow basin surrounded by rocky ridges covered with an oak and pine forest.
The focal point of the park is Halfway Lake, which is filled by spring-fed mountain streams and contained by a hand-laid, native sandstone dam. Open year round, the park provides diverse opportunities for recreation.
Hiking at Raymond B. Winter State Park
6.3 miles of trails
The hiking trails pass through a variety of terrains with only short stretches of steep inclines. Trails within the park are marked and maintained, but a map and proper attire are recommended for personal comfort and safety.
Many of the park’s trails connect with trails in the surrounding Bald Eagle State Forest, making Raymond B. Winter an ideal starting point for backpacking trips.
Map and trail information for the park and Bald Eagle State Forest are available at the park office.
Bake Oven Trail
0.96 mile, most difficult hiking
This trail runs in conjunction with the Mid State Trail and takes hikers along the ridge top and through areas of mountain laurel and chestnut oak.
Boiling Spring Trail
1.41 miles, easiest hiking
This trail follows the waterline originally installed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). Hikers can enjoy dense mountain laurel and ferns en route to the original CCC springhouse.
Brush Hollow Trail
0.73 mile, more difficult hiking
This trail runs in conjunction with the Mid State Trail on the park’s southern border.
Old Boundary Trail
0.77 mile, more difficult hiking
This trail connects Bake Oven Trail and Sand Mountain Road. Hikers cross scenic Halfway Run and its nearby wetland area.
0.33 mile, more difficult hiking
This short, steep trail starts on Sand Mountain Road and climbs through an oak and maple forest to an overlook 300 feet above the park, then continues onto state forest property.
Rapid Run Nature Trail
1.09 miles, easiest hiking
This scenic trail loops through the Rapid Run Natural Area. The old growth hemlock and white pine trees shade wetlands, springs, sphagnum bogs, and vernal pools.
West Boundary Trail
0.64 mile, most difficult hiking
Stretches of steep, rocky terrain make a rugged, yet scenic hike.
Mid State Trail
250 miles, most difficult hiking
The park is a middle trailhead for central Pennsylvania’s Mid State Trail. Stretching from Bedford County in the south to Tioga County in the north, this wilderness footpath mostly covers public lands as it passes through state forests, state parks, and game lands. The remote and isolated trail is excellent for backpacking trips.
Picnicking at Raymond B. Winter State Park
About 150 picnic tables are dispersed throughout the park. Within easy access from picnic areas are:
Drinking water fountains
Other park facilities
Three separate picnic pavilions may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. Unreserved pavilions are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Stay the Night at Raymond B. Winter State Park
flush toilets, warm showers, some electric hook-ups
This activity or structure is ADA accessible.
The 61-site campground accommodates tents, trailers, and motor homes, and opens the second Friday in April and closes in mid-December.
Each site differs slightly in elevation and scenery, and is equipped with:
Most campsites have electric hook-ups.
The campground provides:
Sanitary dump station
Pets are permitted on designated campsites for a fee.
Swimming at Raymond B. Winter State Park
The swimming beach features 300 feet of white sand and is open from late-May to mid-September, 8:00 A.M. until sunset. The beach area includes:
Beach volleyball court
Children’s play area
Swim at your own risk. Please read and follow posted rules for swimming.
Smoking is prohibited on the beach and in the swimming area. For visitors who smoke and still want to use the beach, designated areas adjacent to the beach are provided. The restriction includes:
Other handheld, lighted smoking devices
Wildlife Watching at Raymond B. Winter State Park
Butterfly and Bird Gardens
Near the park office and the Halfway Run Environmental Learning Center, several flower and herb gardens attract wildlife. Native plants and garden flowers draw butterflies such as:
Hummingbird moths and silver spotted skippers also frequent the gardens.
Birds feeding on seeds, insects, or nectar include:
For more specific information about these model backyard habitat areas, a free handout is available at the park office or the learning center.
Fishing at Raymond B. Winter State Park
The park is a coldwater fishery, stocked with brown, rainbow, and brook trout.
With the exception of the swimming area, the lake and its tributary streams are open to public fishing. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission stocks the lake and Rapid Run regularly during the season.
Many anglers gather near the sandstone dam or the fishing pier.
Ice fishing is permitted on natural ice of Halfway Lake.
Ice thickness is not monitored.
Hunting at Raymond B. Winter State Park
During established seasons, about 487 acres are open to:
Training of dogs
Common game species are:
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.
Mountain Biking at Raymond B. Winter State Park
Mountain biking is permitted on designated trails. Raymond B. Winter State Park provides access to 25 off-road mountain bike trails in Bald Eagle State Forest. Riders will find more than 48 miles of trails with nearly 100 miles of connecting forestry roads.
The Central Mountains Shared-Use Trail System brochure provides general information about a number of the trails. The brochure also contains a map showing trails of varying lengths and difficulty. Maps are available at the park office and at the mountain bike trailhead in the main parking lot.
Cross-country Skiing at Raymond B. Winter State Park
Five miles of park trails provide easy skiing and snowshoeing with connecting trails and roads on surrounding state forest land.
Snowmobiling at Raymond B. Winter State Park
Registered snowmobiles are permitted on designated park roads, which lead to more than 300 miles of roads and trails in the Bald Eagle State Forest.
Trailhead facilities at the park include:
Conditions permitting, daily snowmobiling begins after deer season in December until April 1.
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