Highest Point in Pennsylvania

Elevation: 3,213 feet
Location: Mount Davis State Forest Monument
Visited: November 2021

The highest point in Pennsylvania is located on Mount Davis, which sits along the Negro Mountain ridge near the Maryland border. It was named after John Nelson Davis, an early settler and former owner of the site. He was also an American Civil War veteran, land surveyor and naturalist. In terms of high points in the United States, this one is pretty straightforward and easy to get to.

We arrived at the Mount Davis State Forest Monument in the late afternoon. There was a large sign to point us in the right direction for where to find the highest point in Pennsylvania. While there are a few hiking trails that lead to the highest point, you can also drive most of the way there, which is what we did since we were short on time.

From the parking lot we followed along a short trail for a couple hundred metres to the metal observation tower.

But before checking out the views, we first read a few of the interpretive signs from the exhibit nearby. The signs provide more information about the history of the area and the types of flora and fauna that can be found here.

It was then time for us to climb the observation tower. It was surprisingly sturdier than it looks. At the summit thereโ€™s a relief map of the region. The sun was just starting to set and casted a nice glow in the surrounding forest and valley. It sure was windy from up top though.

Afterwards we checked out some of the rocks near the base of the tower and found the official highest point marker.

We then followed the signs back to the parking lot. On the drive out of the park we made a detour at an overlook and watched the sun set further into the horizon.


42 thoughts on “Highest Point in Pennsylvania

  1. kagould17 says:

    I have climbed a few of those towers in my day and always wonder how sturdy they are. Great view and can only imagine how pretty it would be in summer and autumn. Thanks for sharing Linda. Allan

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Those observation towers are a great way to get a panoramic view of the area, even if they are a bit sketchy to climb. Thankfully we were the only ones here so I could use both sides of the railing for extra support as we neared the top. It was super windy so we didn’t linger long. Thanks for reading. Linda

  2. wetanddustyroads says:

    I like the trees interpretive sign – that’s quite unique. Oh, you and your high towers ๐Ÿ‘€ … I would rather check out the rocks at the bottom of the tower (but it is a lovely view though).

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      We’ve gotten really big into tree identification this past year from all the hiking we’ve been doing. So naturally we quite enjoyed the tree plaque with all the various names and leaves of the trees that are commonly found in the area. The views from up top of the observation tower were beautiful, but we didn’t stay long as it was also super windy.

  3. John says:

    The view fro atop the tower is beautiful, must be more so in summer! The foothills seen from the end of my street are higher than that highest point!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      For sure. I imagine the views are quite different in the summer when all the leaves are on the trees. Either way, it was nice to see a panoramic view of the surrounding area. The highest point in Pennsylvania really isn’t all that high in comparison to many of the other states. That’s funny that the foothills in your neighbourhood are even higher than the highest point here.

  4. Diana says:

    Cool! This is a high point I havenโ€™t made it to yet. The tower looks flimsy to Iโ€™m glad to hear itโ€™s actually safe to climb.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I actually got the idea to visit some of these high points from you. I had no idea that this was even a thing. It’s a good excuse to visit an area that we otherwise would have missed entirely. The observation tower definitely looked a bit dodgy, but at least it wasn’t super high.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Agreed, the observation tower was a great way to actually see the views of the surrounding area, otherwise the highest point in Pennsylvania would have been rather uneventful. We haven’t been been to Louisiana yet, but I’ll make sure to adjust my expectations for when we check out the highest point.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I love how accessible many of the highest points are in the United States. It was fun to try to visit as many as we could during our road trip. The observation tower was a bit sketchy, but the views from above were beautiful.

  5. Thattamma C.G Menon says:

    So awesome post ๐ŸŒท๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป all beautifully photoed ๐Ÿ˜ŠโœŒ๐Ÿผbecause winter season all trees no leaves ๐Ÿƒ
    There nature amazing , thank you for sharing ๐ŸŒท๐Ÿ™๐ŸŒทhappy Tuesday ๐Ÿ‘

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Thanks for your kind words and for commenting. In some ways it was nice to not have any leaves on the trees as that meant our views were not obstructed. It was incredible to see the rolling hills and many trees for as far as the eye can see. Take care. Linda

  6. Island Traveler says:

    An amazing experience. Thanks for a great adventure. Iโ€™m working 7 days straight, no nature for me till next day off. For now, Itโ€™s outdoors through the eyes of my blogger friends. ๐Ÿ™

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Seven straight days of work is tough. We are taking a week off around Easter and I am counting down the days. I am so looking forward to being able to unplug from work and just enjoy being outside in nature.

  7. travelling_han says:

    Lovely! I like the highest point markers. It makes me think of English ‘Trig Points’ which are at the highest point of every hill/mountain, and also marked on all the maps. Getting your photo by the Trig Point is always a must on every hike ๐Ÿ™‚

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      That’s neat. We don’t have anything like that in Ontario, but then again, we don’t really have a lot of mountains. The only reason we found the highest point marker was because it was mentioned on one of the plaques at the exhibit so we knew one existed and where to look for it.

  8. Ab says:

    Oh how cool that your US adventures continues in Pennsylvania! So interesting to see a park sign and hiking trails that look different that Ontario Parks ones. Do they give out park crests and stickers? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Winter seemed just around the horizon from your photos. Thankfully itโ€™s Spring in real time!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      This was as far east in Pennsylvania as we drove. From here we headed south towards Georgia. I got to say, state parks in the US are pretty well maintained, or at least the ones we visited. The visitor centres weren’t open though, so I have no idea whether they offer stickers or badges. It’s probably a good thing otherwise my collection will get out of control.

      It’s nice to see some signs of spring. I’m hoping that we can finally enjoy some warm weather now!!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      Some of the observation towers are a bit dodgy and rickety, especially when you near the top when it gets windy. The views from above were beautiful though and it was nice to see that much of this area has been left to wilderness.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      The views from on top of the observation tower were fantastic, especially since the sun was just starting to set. It was nice to see rolling hills and trees for as far as the eye can see.

  9. Bama says:

    Whenever I see an observation tower like that, I always ask myself, should I climb it? Or should I not? Because it looks less sturdy from below. But usually I end up finding myself on the top of the tower a few minutes later, admiring the views and thinking of the way down which can sometimes be a bit scary.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I have the same hesitation and thought process when it comes to climbing these towers. I figure if it wasn’t safe, you wouldn’t be able to climb it. It was a great way to see the surrounding area. It was super windy though so we didn’t stay long.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      After spending the day in Pittsburgh, it was nice to see a bit of the countryside, or rather forest. The views from on top of the observation tower were beautiful. Thanks for reading and leaving a comment. Linda

  10. Meg says:

    This is such a lovely part of Pennsylvania – you picked a good day to go there. The views are really pretty too!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      It was nice to see that much of this area has been left to wilderness, which made for some lovely views from up top of the observation tower. The sun was just starting to set, which made everything appear soft and golden.

  11. Little Miss Traveller says:

    How wonderful to have those observation towers to take in the panoramic views which looked great but must be sublime in summertime. Glad you had the railings to hold on to in the windy conditions. Hope your week is going well. Marion

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      I would be curious to see what this area is like in the summer with all the greenery and leaves on the trees. It’s funny how drastically different the landscape can appear depending on the season. Either way, the panoramic views were outstanding. I wasn’t a fan of the wind though, so we didn’t stay long. Enjoy the rest of your day. Take care. Linda

  12. Josy A says:

    Oooh I love that plaque with the pictures of all the local trees! I would have totally taken a photo and then try to match them up. There are sooo many trees in North America that I don’t know yet,

    I love the lookout…and I can imagine it must be simply stunning in spring with the new growth, or in fall when all those leaves fall down.

    Fab post ๐Ÿ™‚

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      It was neat to see the difference in some of the leaves and trees that are found in Pennsylvania in comparison to Ontario. It’s too bad that we visited so late in the fall when most of the leaves had fallen, which makes it so much harder (more like impossible) to identify the types of trees.

      The lookout was a great way to get a panoramic view of the surrounding area. It would be neat to visit in the various seasons as I bet the landscape would look so drastically different.

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      It’s pretty neat that some of these highest points in the United States are so easily accessible. The one in Pennsylvania was the first one we’ve been to. The view from the top of the observation tower was a great way to soak in the views of the surrounding area.

  13. rkrontheroad says:

    Although I hike and live in high mountains, I am a bit challenged by high places where there’s a possible fall… Don’t know if I would have made it up that tower!

    • WanderingCanadians says:

      The observation tower looked a bit sketchy, but it was actually pretty sturdy and didn’t sway in the wind as we neared the top. We didn’t linger long on the tower, but it was a nice way to get a 360 view of the entire area.

Leave a Reply