When one hears the name Spechty Kopf, most people conjure up images of the European Alps. Well this mountain, "Spechty Kopf", is in Pennsylvania. The name was a carry over from the German peoples that settled the Lykens Valley. Spechty Kopf translated means "woodpecker head". This mountain is not remotely similar to any mountain in the Alps except that it carries an alpine name. It is however a very beautiful mountain. The area between Carsonville and Lykens is filled with beautiful rolling mountains and abundant mountain streams that are refreshing to any hiker. Other mountains that run through the region include higher points on the Peters' and Berry Mountains. Also, Broad Mountain is the center mountain ridge that runs through the gameland area. Spechty Kopf is a southeastern spur of Broad Mountain that is higher than the facing slopes. The region provides many hiking opportunities as well as some technical climbing areas. Spechty Kopf is still recovering along with some other mountainous areas from forest fires of the past summer. The damage was vast and the scars are easily recognizable from other mountains in the area. Overall though, the mountain provides a wonderful day hike to get away from it all. All you'll hear is the beautiful sound of nothing but nature.
From Interstate 81 near Harrisburg:
Get off onto Route 322W at the Lewistown/State College exit and drive North along the Susquehanna River. After about 10-15 miles you'll want to take the Halifax exit for Route 225/147 which will take you over Peters Mountain. Continue through Halifax on 147 to Millersburg and at the square turn right onto Route 209. Take 209 East all the way through Elizabethville, Loyalton, and Big Run. You'll then come into Lykens. In the center of town at the only stoplight, turn right and follow the road back into the gamelands. You'll continue on this very windy road for about five miles. Along the way you'll cross Broad Mountain and once you come off the mountain you'll get to a very sharp right turn. There is a gate off to the left on the corner of the turn. This is where you should park your car.
From Interstate 81 near Pine Grove:
Get off on the Route 209 exit which will take you to Williamstown. Continue to Lykens and at the only stoplight turn left. You'll continue on this very windy road for about five miles. Along the way you'll cross Broad Mountain and once you come off the mountain you'll get to a very sharp right turn. There is a gate off to the left on the corner of the turn. This is where you should park your car.
There are no permits or passes required, but all PA gameland rules apply.
When To Climb
This mountain is climbable anytime of year but in the winter, crampoons may be helpful in snow and ice conditions.
For camping information contact the state gamelands for all rules and camping regulations on state land.
Contact the National Weather Service for the Lykens Valley region.