Bald Eagle State Forest is a massive forest, comprising nearly 200,000 acres across five counties in the middle of Pennsylvania. Within this non-contiguous parcel of land, there are many fantastic trails, overlooks, and even some state parks that are worth exploring.
And, for those that love driving the forest’s unpaved roads, there are also many great roadside scenic overlooks in Bald Eagle State Forest.
Here are a few of my favorites that are worth checking out the next time you want great views of the beautiful countryside of Pennsylvania.
Bell’s Majestic View
Bell’s Majestic View is located along Siglerville-Millheim Pike, a short distance south of Millheim in Centre County.
Of the roadside scenic overlooks in Bald Eagle State Forest that are listed here, this is one of the easiest to reach because the road its on is, relatively speaking, a well-traveled dirt road.
At Bell’s Majestic View, there is room for several cars to pull off to the side of the road. The view here is to the northwest and provides views of the forested valley, farmland, and distant views of small communities like Spring Mills.
While this road, like all the others in this article, is a dirt road, it’s in great shape, and you should have no issues reaching this overlook in a standard vehicle.
Bell’s Majestic View can be found at the following coordinates; 40.829785, -77.508813.
Of all the vistas in Bald Eagle State Park that I’ve visited, I think Penn’s View is my favorite. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that this is one of the best scenic overlooks in Pennsylvania.
Penn’s View is the first of three roadside overlooks located along Poe Paddy Drive and can be reached with a regular car. The parking area for Penn’s View is quite large and can easily accommodate a good number of vehicles.
The view from here is a full 180-degrees looking primarily to the north. The edge of the cliffs here are rocky, providing many spots to sit and enjoy the view.
From here, you can make out the small village of Coburn between the rolling hillsides. You can also see the winding Penns Creek far below, which is home to the abandoned Coburn Tunnel.
Penn’s View can be found at the following coordinates: 40.842515, -77.452782.
(Note: Google Maps tried to take me to this vista via Plantation Trail. While it appears to be a road, it is actually a gated trail. Access this overlook via Pine Swamp Road and Poe Paddy Drive.)
Ingleby View is located about a mile further down Poe Paddy Drive from Penn’s View. However, despite being so close, the road to get there is a bit rough, and I recommend a high-clearance vehicle to reach this spot (or you could also park at Penn’s View and walk here).
Ingleby View is actually slightly hidden from the road and looks like a normal pull-off hidden behind a small group of trees. Once you pull into the parking area, however, you’ll be treated to one of the best roadside overlooks in Bald Eagle State Forest.
While the view here is a bit narrower than some of the others on this list, it offers a great view to the northeast.
Ingleby View can be found at the following coordinates: 40.844393, -77.434049.
Raven’s Knob Vista
Raven’s Knob Vista is located another 0.6 miles further down Poe Paddy Drive from Ingleby Vista. Like the previous overlook, I don’t recommend driving to this spot unless you have an SUV or another high-clearance vehicle as the road is rough in places.
According to the sign at Raven’s Knob Vista, there are two scenic overlooks here (Ravens Knob East and Ravens Knob West). However, only Ravens Knob East is worth writing home about, in my opinion, as the view to the west is mostly overgrown.
It’s also worth noting that the last 50 yards or so up to Raven’s Knob East is quite rough. I opted to park at the turn-off and walk the last few feet up to the overlook.
Raven’s Knob Vista can be found at the following coordinates: 40.838529, -77.425230.
(Note that there is an unmaintained road that runs from Raven’s Knob to Poe Paddy State Park and Poe Paddy Tunnel. I opted not to take this road in my SUV and instead returned the way that I came.)
Chocolate Drop Vista
Chocolate Drop Vista is another of my favorite Bald Eagle State Forest overlooks.
This roadside vista can be found along Pine Swamp Road and is only about a mile from Poe Valley State Park. While it might be possible to drive a car here, especially approaching from the north, I’d recommend a high-clearance vehicle, if possible.
Chocolate Drop Vista is located at a small pull-off at a 180-degree curve in the road. It looks to the east and features an uninterrupted view of the rolling hillsides of the forest.
One unique mountain peak in the middle of the view is what likely gives this overlook its name.
Chocolate Drop Vista can be found at the follow coordinates: 40.832281, -77.451112.
Big Valley Vista
Big Valley Vista is the southernmost overlook on this list and is located along Siglerville-Millheim Pike in Mifflin County.
The view here is located at a small pull-off along the road and provides a commanding view to the south. The road to reach here is in quite good shape and should pose no issues in a standard car.
From this spot, you’ll be able to look out over Chrissman Gap and towards Siglerville, Milroy, and Route 322. While the view here features a few more man-made features than some of the others on this list, it’s incredibly expansive and the view goes on for miles.
Big Valley Vista can be found at the following coordinates: 40.784568, -77.514891.
Black Gap Vista
Black Gap Vista is the northernmost and easternmost overlook on this list and is located in the northeastern corner of Centre County, near McCalls Dam State Park and R.B. Winter State Park. It’s worth noting that it’s not especially close to the other vistas listed in this article.
This roadside overlook in Bald Eagle State Forest, which is easily reachable in a car, is located at a 90-degree turn in the road and offers incredible views to the south. Given that there is nearly no development in this part of the forest, all you’ll see from this overlook is forested hillsides for as far as your eyes can see.
Black Gap Vista can be found at the following coordinates: 41.015849, -77.214416.
(Article Disclaimer: You’ll be driving on narrow dirt roads when visiting these vistas in Bald Eagle State Forest, and these roads are likely not maintained in the winter. I visited all of these overlooks in an SUV without using four-wheel drive. I have listed my opinion regarding the ability of a standard vehicle to reach each spot. Please exercise caution when driving on these roads, and remember that road conditions can change (for the better or for the worse) over time. It’s better to turn around than to get stuck.)
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