Tunkhannock, PA – Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn today joined a department celebration of the addition of Vosburg Neck State Park in Wyoming County into the Pennsylvania system.
“DCNR is extremely excited to welcome Vosburg Neck into the state parks system – the first state park in Wyoming County,” Dunn said. “I look forward to seeing the impact this beautiful new park will have in this region as it will provide tremendous new outdoor recreation opportunities. Thank you to Governor Tom Wolf and the state legislators who supported this new park and the continued investment in our public lands.”
Vosburg Neck is 669 acres being acquired with the assistance of the North Branch Land Trust. The park offers scenic hiking opportunities, including a climb to an impressive westerly oriented vista, pleasant strolls along a former railroad bed, invigorating shared use trails, and significant public access for water-based recreation to the North Branch of the Susquehanna River.
“The North Branch Land Trust is tremendously excited that the Howland Preserve will join Pennsylvania’s award-winning state park system,” North Branch Land Trust Board Chair Christina Taylor said. “We have been honored to protect and steward this uniquely beautiful property for almost 20 years. Now, we are proud to be a part of this historic moment as Wyoming County receives its first state park. We have every confidence that the Howland Preserve will become an important destination and provide outdoor recreation opportunities for residents and visitors alike.”
Vosburg Neck, previously known as the Howland Preserve, joins Susquehanna Riverlands in York County and Big Elk Creek in Chester County as the three new additions to Pennsylvania’s state park system, bringing the total number of state parks to 124. The names are temporary, as final names for the state parks will be decided during the planning process.
Including the addition of Washington Crossing to the state park system in 2016, Governor Wolf has added four parks to the system during his eight years in office. This is more than any governor has added in the past 40 years.
“What a great moment for all the individuals and groups who have advocated and worked tirelessly to have the first state park established in Wyoming County,” state Sen. Lisa Baker said. “This is a significant victory for conservation and recreation and solidifies the area’s reputation for featuring natural attractions and outdoor activities.”
In keeping with the state park selection process, each of the new locations has criteria that warrant conservation. The Vosburg Neck site will be Wyoming County’s first state park, while the Big Elk Creek location is under significant pressure from residential and commercial development. In York County, the Susquehanna Riverlands site adjoins and builds on large tracts of already preserved open space. Also, each site is within a half-hour of heavily populated areas where land for recreation use is often at a premium.
People can access Vosburg Neck and the other new state parks; however, all have limited visitor amenities such as parking and trails. A master planning process for each park will include evaluation of natural resources, visitor amenities, and recreation opportunities, and the chance for the public to provide input.
Find more information about Pennsylvania state parks on the DCNR website.