Home Affiliate Marketing Guide to seeing all of the fall colors near Pittsburgh near Pittsburgh

Guide to seeing all of the fall colors near Pittsburgh near Pittsburgh

by Lottar


The Farmer’s Almanac estimates that October 5-21 will be the peak fall foliage season across Pennsylvania. Not exactly sure how they determine it this far in advance (and it’s literally the same as last year’s date range). Here are some places to check out for peak fall foliage viewing this year.

Pine Creek flows through the “Grand Canyon” of Pennsylvania in Leonard Harrison State Park. Photo: Getty Images.

Pine Creek Gorge

🚘⏱ ~3 hours east of Pittsburgh

If you can’t make it to the Grand Canyon, might as well go to “the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania.” Both Leonard Harrison and Colton Point State Parks offer scenic views—the former is more family-friendly with a playground and picnic areas, while the latter offers a steep 4-mile descent into the canyon floor. Choose your own adventure.

Fall colors at Mount Davis. Photo credit: Getty Images.

Mount Davis

🚘⏱ ~2 hours southeast of Pittsburgh

Mount Davis is the highest point in Pennsylvania. It’s well known to highpointers (people who visit the highest point in each state so they can check it off their list), but don’t let that fancy term intimidate you. The Mount Davis Lookout Tower offers a 360-degree view, but it’s easily climbable. The Highpoint Trail is a 5.2 mile loop, so Mount Davis can be a short trip rather than a full day destination hike.

Hawn’s overlooks the mountains of Pennsylvania with a view of Raystown Lake in the fall before sunset. Photo: Getty Images.

Raystown Lake

🚘⏱ ~2.5 hours east of Pittsburgh

Raystown Lake is the largest lake entirely in Pennsylvania. It is 30 miles long and offers the opportunity for hiking and water adventures. The Allegrippis routes are popular with mountain bike enthusiasts. The lake offers campsites and cabins for rent, with many options still available for fall.

Barronvale Covered Bridge in Somerset, PA. Photo: Getty Images.

Somerset’s covered bridges

🚘⏱ ~1 hour drive southeast of Pittsburgh

Want something a little less strenuous than a hike? Check out some of the covered bridges in Somerset, Pennsylvania. Uncovering PA has an article listing all 10 bridges, with some tips on how to see them all. If 10 seems a bit much, just choose the Packsaddle Covered Bridge. It is the only covered bridge in the state that is directly over a waterfall. While the falls are best seen during times of high water (such as in the spring), the shortest bridge in Somerset County still looks impressive with fall foliage.

Kinzau Bridge Skywalk, located in the Pennsylvania State Park of the same name, was created when a tornado destroyed the iron railway bridge over the river valley. Photo: Getty Images.

Kinzua Bridge State Park Sky Walk

🚘⏱ ~3-hour drive northeast of Pittsburgh

Once the tallest and longest railway viaduct in the world, six of the Kinzua Viaduct’s remaining steel towers were converted into the Sky Walk in 2011. Extending 624 feet into the Kinzua Gorge, it offers panoramic views (and thanks to some glass-bottom sections of the skywalk’s deck, the opportunity to look straight down).

View of hills covered with fall trees from Raven Rock overlooking Coopers Rock State Forest West Virginia. Photo: Getty Images.

Coopers Rock, West Virginia

🚘⏱ ~90 minute drive south of Pittsburgh

Do you technically want to leave the state so you can say you had a vacation this year? Take a short drive to the iconic views of Coopers Rock State Forest. Located 13 miles from Morgantown, this West Virginia State Park lists 20+ trails on its website; make sure you take a photo at the view.

Know before you go: Fine fall colors near Pittsburgh

As a reminder, overcrowding is a potential problem for these outdoor venues. Practice social distancing, wear your mask, and check the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources website for updates on possible places to turn away visitors before you leave home.


This story was originally published in September 2020 and has been updated for the 2021 fall break peek season.



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