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3.31.2016

Potter County: Bright Stars, Ice Mines, Potatoes, Lumber, & More

We started our Route 6 journey in Wellsboro at the PA Grand Canyon in Tioga County. The next county west of Tioga is Potter County. This is one of the most remote areas on the entire East Coast of the country. Due to this remote location, there is very little light pollution from things such as street lights and more, thus the skies are the darkest and the clearest of any on the East Coast. Cherry Springs State Park is a popular destination for star gazers and more. Additionally, due to the elevation of this county, there is a rare triple divide in which three different rivers start and flow into three different watersheds. This is one of only a handful of places where three different rivers start that flow into three different watersheds. Potter County is home to the headwaters of the mighty Allegheny River, which flows to the Gulf of Mexico, the mighty Susquehanna River, which flows into the Chesapeake, and the Genesee River, which flows into Lake Ontario. In addition to natural beauty, some pretty awesome local institutions are around as well that celebrate some of the natural resources that the county has, including the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum, and the Coudersport Ice Mine, a strange geological wonder where ice forms year round within a cave setting. 
With everything said, Potter County is a breathtaking place, truly earning the moniker of "God's Country." 
In addition to the lumber industry being a huge part of Potter County, Potato farming is another industry that has played a huge role within Potter County, so much so that this quirky roadside attraction, Potato City, was started in 1949 by Dr. E.L. Nixon, President Nixon's Uncle, a major player in the potato industry. The restaurant and motel celebrates this potato heritage. 

Nearby Coudersport is a stunning little town, with lots of charming architecture, like this old train station. If you are looking for an idyllic and quiet place to spend some time, Potter County is a great place to go. Natural beauty, small family businesses, classic roadside motels, natural wonders, and the darkest skies on the East Coast await you in Potter County.

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