We encourage you to reserve your timed tickets in advance. Plan your visit today!

About Powdermill

Powdermill Nature Reserve is Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s environmental research center. Located 55 miles southeast of Pittsburgh in Rector, Pennsylvania, Powdermill is a field station and laboratory where researchers do long-term studies of natural populations in western Pennsylvania. In addition to being positioned for Appalachian-specific studies in ornithology, ecology, invertebrate zoology, and botany, Powdermill is a great place to spend a fun-filled day outdoors with the family.

Explore the beautiful woodlands around Powdermill, or visit the nature center, which features exhibits that highlight local wildlife, an indoor stream, and a marsh machine that uses a living greenhouse to purify waste water.

Admission to Powdermill Nature Reserve is free.

Nature Center Hours

The Nature Center will be closed on Sunday, April 17, 2022.

Winter Hours
Nov. 1 – Mar 31

Wednesday–Saturday: 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

Sunday: Noon–4:30 p.m.

Summer Hours
Apr 1 – Oct 31

Tuesday–Saturday: 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

Sunday: Noon–4:30 p.m.

Location

GPS Coordinates
+40.160    -79.272

Address         
Powdermill Nature Reserve
1795 Route 381
Rector, PA 15677

Phone
724.593.6105

Hiking & Trails
Trails are open dawn to dusk.

Events at Powdermill

Phenomenal Fungi at Powdermill Nature Reserve

June 4, 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Join us for Phenomenal Fungi! Learn from experts about the many ecological roles of fungi, venture o...

Science and Nature Lecture with Carla Rosenfeld

June 19, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we explore seasonal natural history phenomena of Powdermill Nature Reserve! A lecture wil...

Science and Nature Lecture

July 17, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we explore seasonal natural history phenomena of Powdermill Nature Reserve! A lecture wil...

Family Nature Walk at Powdermill

August 6, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we hit the trails for a guided nature walk! We’ll meet in the atrium of the Powdermill ...

Science and Nature Lecture

August 21, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we explore seasonal natural history phenomena of Powdermill Nature Reserve! A lecture wil...

Family Nature Walk at Powdermill

September 3, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we hit the trails for a guided nature walk! We’ll meet in the atrium of the Powdermill ...

Science and Nature Lecture

September 18, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we explore seasonal natural history phenomena of Powdermill Nature Reserve! A lecture wil...
taxidermy coyote

History

Powdermill Nature Reserve was established by Carnegie Museum of Natural History in 1956 to serve as a field station for research on natural populations. General and Mrs. Richard K. Mellon and Dr. and Mrs. Alan M. Scaife presented 1,160 acres of land located about 3 miles south of Rector, Pennsylvania, for the use of Carnegie Museum of Natural History which was named “Powdermill Nature Reserve, a Research Station of Carnegie Museum.” Over the next several years, acreage was added to Powdermill Nature Reserve, and it now offers more than 2,200 acres of woodlands, streams, fields, and ponds for research and educational programs. Powdermill is home to the museum’s GIS lab, avian research center, and a new nature center with ecological exhibits.

Powdermill Nature Reserve Logo