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Cooke State Forest

Farmington, MI
Level Contributor
28 posts
Cooke State Forest

Hello - 3 women looking to meet within a half hour of Clarion (we are meeting half way from philly and detroit) for a long weekend. Hoping to do some hiking, walk through quaint downtowns, and maybe some shopping but that is not a must. Any recommendations for which town or hotel/accomodations to choose from. Would prefer not to eat at chain restaurants. Also open to recommendations for great hikes (3-4 miles, not strenuous but scenic)

6 replies to this topic
Pittsburgh...
Destination Expert
for Pittsburgh
Level Contributor
1,962 posts
31 reviews
1. Re: Cooke State Forest

Why not stay in Clarion then? It's only 20 minutes from Cook's Forest State Park. I've never been, but since it is a college town, I imagine it would be pretty walkable downtown.

Pittsburgh...
Level Contributor
504 posts
35 reviews
2. Re: Cooke State Forest

Cook Forest is an absolutely spectacular natural area with great hiking, but there is no town there. Lodging is primarily cabins and I'm not even sure that there are restaurants open in the off season. It really is gorgeous, but may not be a great weekend if you want to do more than walk in the woods. If you've never driven across Pennsylvania on Route 80, you'll be amazed at the fact that there really isn't much there. The towns are small and far apart. If that corridor is a must, maybe check out Bellefonte and State College?

You're posting on the Pittsburgh forum and Pittsburgh is pretty much equidistant from Philadelphia and Detroit. Why not just come here? Lots of walking and exploring, good shopping, and great food.

Farmington, MI
Level Contributor
28 posts
3. Re: Cooke State Forest

Thanks for info - I will check out the two towns you mentioned. (And I agree Pittsburgh is perfect halfway spot - we have met there 3 times previously and had great times. Just looking to do something different/outdoorsy/in nature)

Pittsburgh...
Level Contributor
504 posts
35 reviews
4. Re: Cooke State Forest

Cook Forest is really amazing in terms of nature. If you want something truly rural and relaxing, there are lots of great cabins for rent. It's fun to spend time walking in the woods then coming back to cook and hang out in front of a fire.

Pittsburgh...
Destination Expert
for St. Barthelemy
Level Contributor
2,424 posts
21 reviews
5. Re: Cooke State Forest

Or if you'd rather be pampered, but close to nature, what about Nemacolin Woodlands or Bedford Springs? These are lux resorts but you can often get deals (try Groupon for BS) and they are close to hikes, etc. Nemacolin also has the benefit of being near Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob homes.

Vestal, New York
Destination Expert
for Auburn, Finger Lakes
Level Contributor
11,367 posts
208 reviews
6. Re: Cooke State Forest

Both Kane and Warren have dining and lodging options and would be suitable bases for Cooks Forest.

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