Purple Lizard Maps Bald Eagle State Forest Map
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A map that covers a somewhat overlooked, underexplored,…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $15 USD
A map that covers a somewhat overlooked, underexplored, and fairly large area in Central Pennsylvania (Bald Eagle State Forest). The map, in its typical Purple Lizard fashion, is super-durable and could serve as an emergency umbrella if necessary (only half joking...it is waterproof though). Best for those living in or exploring Central Pennsylvania or for map-junkies.
- Highly durable
- Covers an area that is overlooked by many
- Easy to read
- Highlights like-minded local businesses
- The company’s signature hidden purple lizards scattered throughout the map (signifies a cool spot, but doesn’t tell you what it is...makes for a fun surprise).
- Additional trip-planning resources on the company's website
- 1% For the Planet member
- Pretty big and bulky
- Area business ads take away from the map
Admittedly, like many in Central Pennsylvania, I’ve explored many of the trails covered by the popular Purple Lizard Rothrock State Forest map more, but this map has almost single-handedly led me to explore the often-overlooked Bald Eagle State Forest. I think a good map can draw a reader to the locale it highlights, and that’s exactly what has happened several times with this map.
The map is made of a thin plastic-like material that folds well. It is not paper coated in plastic, but rather fully plastic itself. This means it is fully water- and mud-proof. Just wipe it off and you’re good to go.
- Unfolded - 24" x 36"
- Folded - 4" x 8"
This makes for a pretty large map when fully unfurled, but at least it slides into the back pocket of most pants I own when folded down, making for easy access on the trail. It can also be easily rolled/folded/scrunched and will rebound just fine.
What’s a purple lizard?
The company places little purple lizards throughout each of their maps to indicate a cool spot to explore, without revealing or labeling what the cool spot exactly is—ie. lookout, local legend, historically significant site, waterfall, etc. While I don’t want to give away any secrets, I can say that most of the purple lizards that I’ve found on this map have been well worth my time. Sometimes they are on main trails, like on the Mid State Trail, and other times it takes some side trails and adventurous spirit to find the cool spot indicated by the purple lizard.
Probably as a way to generate additional revenue, the maps do feature ads of area businesses that are mostly tailored to the outdoor industry. I understand their purpose and I’m sure it helps the businesses with exposure, but I, personally, don’t care much for the ads. They seem to detract from the map for me.
In addition to being a really good map, the company also posts helpful trip reports and tips for hiking in the area. As an example, I’m itching to do at least parts, if not all, of the bike trip explained here. It’s great to see photos and know that it corresponds exactly to what my map shows.
Highlighting an area that is somewhat in the middle of nowhere (at least by mid-Atlantic standards, anyways), this map has invited me to places I never would have explored otherwise. I recommend this highly durable map for those who want to explore some of the lesser-known areas of Central Pennsylvania, whether on foot, bike, or boat.
I've always preferred physical maps as opposed to digital versions (apps). Typically, I take at least one map with me on most trips. I've been using Purple Lizard maps for five years, ever since moving to Central Pennsylvania.