Jones Mill Pond and Dam Spillway
The park's best scenery is created by a gorgeous stone dam and spillway, on Jones Mill Run, with naturally cut stone that is so beautiful a match for the surrounding terrain that it's easy to forget this cascading waterfall is man made. Perhaps this is owing to the age of the dam given it was built by the Civilian Conservation Corp in the 1930s. Jones Mill Pond, the dam's creation, is a tranquil scene in contrast to the noisy white water just feet away. The serene pond is a bright opening in an otherwise unrelenting forest canopy that often reflect on the mirror like waters of the pond. Sediment from the stream has contributed to the scenery as the northwestern portion has become a marsh with cattails, moss, and other vegetation. Even though the pond is artificial, its age has made it appear natural as any.
Jones Mill Run is a mountain stream making it quite sensitive to recent rainfalls. The dam spillway looks best when a wall of water is flowing over it after recent rains, filling every rock with white water, but you can expect just a small column of water during dry periods.
The best time to visit the pond is an autumn afternoon when the sun is still high enough to light up the trees on the northeastern side of the pond making for some near perfect reflections.
A hike is required to get to this location with several trails crisscrossing nearby.
The terrain below the dam may be steep for some visitors. Roots abound in this area so watch your step.
How to Access
Most visitors will access the dam from the Pumphouse Trail and its parking lot near Jones Mill Run along Laurel Hill State Park Road. It's less than a mile to reach the dam on a wide and easy trail.
Get Directions to Parking Using Google Maps:
Just below the dam is a large toppled tree that actually can be used to crawl across Jones Mill Run to the other side of the stream for a different angled view of both the dam and the pond. This places you on the trail that leads up to the Ridge Trail.
Jones Mill Pond and Dam Spillway is located in Pennsylvania.