Northern Tier (Pennsylvania)
The counties and important towns in the Northern Tier are:
The region is bounded to the north by the Southern Tier of New York, to the west by Northern Pennsylvania, and to the east by Northeastern Pennsylvania.
The five Northern Tier counties are home to roughly 180,000 people distributed among many small towns and the countryside.
Sayre Yard is a large railyard currently operated by Norfolk Southern Railroad that extends across the state line into Waverly, New York and connects rail transport centers via Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, to freight yards in Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and Baltimore to Buffalo and other Upstate New York cities as well as the Great Lakes basin cities.
The Endless Mountains are a major geographic feature of the eastern counties.
The Northern Tier region as a whole is notorious for its high unemployment and low per-capita incomes in comparison to the rest of Pennsylvania, though the discovery of the Marcellus Formation provided an economic boost in the 2000s and 2010s. The region's top two employers are government-funded services, specifically health care and education services.
Agriculture is an important activity in the region despite the short growing season and hilly terrain. Small-scale beef and dairy farming is common, and there are many small-scale producers of maple syrup in the region.
Production of crude oil and natural gas are important to the local economy. The characteristics of Pennsylvania Grade Crude Oil make it especially desirable for high-end uses.
Logging, forest product industries and paper product industries are significant parts of the region's economy.