New PA Highlands Conservation Atlas Story Maps

Using data from the Land and Trails Tracking System, the AMC Mid-Atlantic office created 12 interactive Story Maps that provide updates and expansions to the 2006 Highlands Conservation Atlas. Included in this update were conserved lands, conservation areas, and historic and recreational resources, which includes the PA Highlands Trail.

This resource was created to be shared with partner organizations, municipalities, and counties in the 13-county Highlands Region to increase awareness of the Highlands Region, its resources, and conservation and recreation needs to be addressed.

This Conservation Atlas was created from information provided by local land trusts and county agencies. It identifies the most important natural, historical, and cultural resources in each area. A greenway map illustrates important connections to be made between project areas. The 2023 Conservation Atlas update was created from information provided in the original Conservation Atlas. Turning the original paper atlas into 12 online Story Maps provides partners with immediate access to the updated information.

Each of these twelve Story Maps includes an interactive map to show resources such as historic sites, trails, and open space in the regions. The twelve Story Maps, from east to west, are:

  • PA Highlands Conservation Atlas: This provides an overview and general background/history of the entire PA Highlands Region.
  • Northampton Highlands: The most northeasterly expression of the PA Highlands.
  • Lehigh Valley South Mountain: These rocky, wooded hillsides dominate the natural landscape of southeast Lehigh County.
  • Oley Hills: Shaping the character of the rural communities of eastern Berks County.
  • Unami Hills: Home of vast forests and the Green Land Reservoir.
  • Hopewell Big Woods: Located in the heart of the PA Highlands.
  • Welsh Mountain: Large contiguous forest that provides scenic vistas of Amish farms in Lancaster County.
  • Furnace Hills: Forms the central forested hub of the PA Highlands, providing a way station for thousands of migrating waterfowl every year.
  • Sand Hills: Stands nearly alone as the bastion of natural resources along the eastern shore of the Susquehanna River.
  • Conewago Mountains: An arc of forested peaks located in northern York County.
  • Whiskey Springs Upland: Marks the northern end of South Mountain in Cumberland County.
  • South Mountain Faces: Southernmost expression of the PA Highlands Region.