|Trailhead||Fern Picnic Area|
|Distance||About 2 miles round trip|
The Fern Trail resembles a tennis racket - you walk up the handle, around the loop of the net, and back down the handle. You will have to do some moderate climbing, as the Fern Trail reaches from the valley floor to the top of the ridge.
As you can guess from the name, the Fern Trail is a showplace for ferns. You'll see Christmas ferns, interrupted ferns, maidenhair ferns, ebony spleenwort, New York ferns, lady ferns, sensitive ferns, polypody ferns, and many others.
The lower section of the trail passes through a hemlock ravine. As you climb you enter a forest of towering red oaks, white oaks, chestnut oaks, black birch, tulip poplar, and maple trees. You'll pass the burnt-out stump of an American Chestnut, and, if you're observant, you can find several young chestnuts struggling to grow before they blight.
Near the top of the trail you'll see plant communities that resemble those found in the Applachian Mountain balds. Here you'll find mountain laurel, huckleberry, and reindeer moss.
The Fern Trail is an important connector for other trails. The Cemetery Ridge Trail intersects at the top of the Fern Trail's loop; the Hemlock Trail intersects with the eastern branch of the loop.