LACKAWANNA STATE PARK – ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW

You will not find Lackawanna State Park on the list of must-see attractions in Pennsylvania. It does not offer any outstanding crowd-drawing features, but what it gives instead is pleasant views, fresh air, and a relaxing atmosphere. Come for a day or spend a week camping among nature. Put your boat on the lake or rent one to catch a fish or simply enjoy a reflection of clouds and trees. You can also discover miles of easy hiking without the need of breaking a sweat. With no mountains to climbs, no waterfalls to hike to, you will not need an elaborate itinerary to catch up to. Read on to learn why a peaceful retreat in Lackawanna State Park may be just what the doctor ordered.

Fall is the best time to visit Lackawanna State Park. Trees reflecting in the lake.
Fall is the best time to visit Lackawanna State Park.

Located within15-minute drive from my house, Lackawanna State Park feels more like a city park to me but for many, it is a desirable camping vacation destination. It mostly provides an escape to nature for big-city folks, but even some of my local friends camp there to unwind.

Of course, it also serves nearby communities as a place to have a picnic or just take a stroll. I usually visit for a couple of hours to clear my mind and soak in calming views. It works every time!

Lackwanna State Park. View of the lake.
Another beautiful view from a picnic area at Lackawanna State Park.

LACKAWANNA STATE PARK – A PEACEFUL RETREAT

Description

Lackawanna State Park is a 1,445-acre Pennsylvania state park in Benton and North Abington Townships in Lackawanna County, just 10 miles north of Scranton. Lake Lackawanna, a 198-acre man-made lake, is the central focus of recreation at the park. (No swimming is allowed in the lake.)

Contact

Lackawanna State Park
1839 Abington Road
North Abington Twp PA 18414
Phone Number:
Park Office: (570)945-3239

lackawannasp@pa.gov

website 

Views from a picnic area at Lackawanna State Park.Views from a picnic area at Lackawanna State Park.

Directions

The park is easily reached from I-81. Visitors should take Exit 199 and travel three miles west on PA 524. Visitors coming via U.S. routes 6 and 11 should take PA 107 east about three miles to PA 407, then south. This convenient location allows for a relaxing weekend escape from York City and Philadelphia.

GPS DD: Lat. 41.55887  Long. -75.70555

GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
41.55887, -75.70555
41°33’32″N, 75°42’20″W

Lackawanna State Park. Interesting trees.
Lackawanna State Park delivers lots of shade during hot summer days.

Lackawanna State Park Map

Maps of the park are available in an outside box by the entrance of the park’s office. You can also print Lackawanna State Park Map before your arrival. It is a detailed map that includes all major areas and hiking trails.

Activities in that park

Picnicking

Picnicking is the primary activity in the park, especially popular on weekends among locals. Most picnic areas can be found past the main entrance to the park, but look for smaller spots at the Bullhead Bay Boat Launch to the north, and States Creek Mooring Area on the southern end of the lake.

Even though the park never gets crowded, if you want to grab a table close to the lake, arrive by 9 AM on summer weekends. Also, the area near the playground tends to be more popular as parents can relax under the trees while watching their children play.

Grills and modern restrooms are available throughout the area. Additionally, three picnic pavilions may be reserved up to 11 months in advance for a fee. If not reserved, the pavilions are free on a first-come, first-served basis.

Lackawanna State Park. One of many picnic tables.
No need to worry about the lack of picnic tables. You may not get one by the water, but plenty awaits in the woods.

Walking

Locals use the park for their daily exercise. Most of them prefer a paved path along the lake. Many benches are provided to take a break and enjoy the scenery. Many people visit the park to walk their dogs. All dogs must the leashed. Make sure to clean after your dog. Bags are provided if you forget to bring them with you.

Lackawanna State Park. Clouds reflecting in the lake.
Do not forget to stay for the sunset at Lackawanna State Park!

Fall in Lackawanna State Park

I strongly recommend visiting during the fall when the park dressed up with incredible foliage reflecting in the lake. You will feel like you step into a painting and with no one around, the solitude is guaranteed!

Healing beauty awaits at Lackawanna State Park. Reflation of the forest.Healing beauty awaits at Lackawanna State Park.

Fishing 

Fishing is very popular in the park all year round. The 198-acre Lackawanna Lake has cold water and warm water fish. The 2.5 mile-long lake has more than 7.5 miles of shoreline. Common fish include trout, muskellunge, walleye, channel catfish, bullhead, pickerel, and largemouth bass.

Boating

Lackawanna Lake is popular for canoeing, kayaking, and rowing. You can find three boat launches around the lake. A limited number of boat mooring spaces are available on a seasonal basis. A boat concession near the swimming pool area rents various types of boats.

Lackawanna State Park- yellow kayak.
Lackawanna State Park – nothing more peaceful than gliding on the lake.

Swimming

Unfortunately, swimming is not allowed in Lackawanna Lake, and that probably contributes to the park’s lower popularity in comparison to most popular Pennsylvania state parks.

Swimming pool

If you wish to cool off, an inviting swimming pool delivers modern facilities, changing rooms, concession stand, and views of the lake. The pool is open from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM, starting Memorial Day weekend.

Lackawanna State Park pool admission rates

​Admission Time Frame​ ​Resident Price ​Non-Resident Price
​Swimmer ​Per Day ​$6.00 ​$6.00
​Senior Citizen ​Per Day ​$5.00 ​$5.00
​Late Arrival (after 4:00 PM) ​Per Day ​$5.00 ​$5.00
​Children Under 38 Inches ​Per Day ​free free
​Book of 20 Tickets ​Per Book $80.00 $80.00
​Park Camper or Cabin Occupant Rate with Receipt ​Per Day ​$4.00 ​$4.00
​Season Pass Adult ​Per Season ​$50.00 ​$50.00
​Season Pass Under 12 Years Old ​Per Season ​$42.00 ​$42.00
​Season Pass Senior Citizen ​Per Season ​$40.00 ​$40.00
​Season Pass Family ​Per Season ​$180.00 ​$180.00
​Season Pass Additional Child ​Per Season ​$36.00 ​$36.00
​Group of 15 or More People Per Swimmer Per Day ​$4.00 ​$4.00

Lackawanna State Park. Pool.Children love the pool at Lackawanna State Park.

Hiking at Lackawanna State Park

The park offers excellent hiking trails along the lake and in the woods. Most of the trails are almost flat and easy to navigate. While most visitors congregate at the main picking area, hiking trails remain uncrowded even on beautiful summer days. 18 miles of looping trails feature forest, fields, lakeshore areas, and woodland streams.

Map of hiking trails at Lackawanna State Park

Lackawanna State Park. Hiking.
You will have no problem finding solitude at Lackawanna State Park – here is a section of Ranger Trail.

My favorite trail – a combination of Ranger Trail and Lakeshore Trail

When going north on PA 407, you will pass South Shore exit and park office exit, both on your left. Keep driving until you are almost at the bridge. Find a place to park on the right before the bridge. Look for an entrance to a trail there, which is a part of Ranger Trail (yellow blaze) popular with mountain bikers. Start hiking there. Keep your eyes open to the left.

A short detour will take you a charming peninsula offering beautiful views of the lake. After that stop, keep to the left, and you will eventually reach scening Lakeshore Trail (green blaze). Walk as far as you want and then retrace your steps or take one of the other trails in the woods.

map of my trail

Lackawanna State Park. Lakeshore Trail in early spring.
Lakeshore trail in early spring.

Camping at Lackawanna State Park

Tent Camping

If you are looking for specious forested campsites, Lackawanna State Park delivers. None on the sites are on the lake and do not offer water views, but are located within an easy walk to the lake and the pool. The campground shower house provides warm showers and flush toilets.

Fox Run and Maple Lane loops allow pets at designated sites. A sanitary dump station is near the campground entrance. My favorite is an electric site #19 in Carpentertown Loop for its interesting trees and close proximity to the lake.

Rates -rates range from $19 for $30 per night.

Lackawanna State Park. Tent camping.
Lackawanna State Park – tent camping.

Camping Cottages

Located in the Carpentertown Loop of the campground, three camping cottages feature wooden walls and floors, windows, porch, electric lights, and outlets. Each cottage sleeps five people in bunk beds. T

Rates: $48.30 per night, $256.20 per week

Lackawanna State Park. Camping cottage.
Comping cottages allow for comfortable fall camping.

Yurts

Also located in the Carpentertown Loop of the campground are two yurts, which are round canvas and wood walled tents with a wooden deck. They sleep up to five people in bunk beds and feature a cooking stove, microwave oven, refrigerator, table, chairs, electric heat, and outlets.

Rates: $59.85 per night, $266.70 per week

Lackwanna State Park. Yurt.
Yurts are a great alternative to tent camping, but they go fast, so make your reservation well in advance.

Lackawanna State Park Campground map

Make a reservation for Lackawanna State Park

Mountains Biking

Lackawanna State Park Trail Crew and other volunteers have created 24 miles of trails within Lackawanna State Park and neighboring lands owned by Countryside Conservancy. These trails are mainly designed with mountain bikers in mind but are also great for hiking.

Mountain biking maps and stats, and description 

Just stop and look, and you will find beauty at Lackawanna State Park no matter what season.

Nearby Attractions to Lackawanna State Park

For a change of pace, you will find many interesting things to do in and around Scranton, PA.

Lackwanna State Park, PA delivers peaceful retreat all year long.

You May Also Like

Visiting Worlds End State Park, PA
16 Reasons to Visit the 1000 Islands, NY 
Spring in Great Smoky Mountains National Park 
Escape to Nature – 8 Best State Parks in NY 
Why Utah is the best state for nature lovers 
Tuweep Area – The best-kept secret of the Grand Canyon 

 

Comments