Autumn is the ideal time for exploring Pennsylvania's forests by foot or
on bike - the air is crisp and cool, the trails are dry and the colors up
close are simply breathtaking. Enjoy these links to some of the best trails
in Western PA for enjoying the fall up close and personal and getting a
little exercise at the same time.
Youghiogheny River Trail
One of the best trails in Western PA for great fall scenery and easy
family-friendly walking and biking is the Youghiogheny River Trail in the Laurel
Highlands of Southwestern Pennsylvania. The trail is built on an old railroad
bed (which means it is flat!) and runs for 70 miles from McKeesport (near
Pittsburgh) to Confluence. Multiple access points and four camping sites along
the trail make it easy to plan a trip, either short or long. Horse-back riding
is allowed on the northern section of the trail only - from Connellsville to
little Boston. The section of the trail which runs through Ohiopyle State Park
is especially beautiful.
Roaring Run Ramble (mountain biking)
For mountain bike enthusiasts, this trail in the Laurel Highlands region,
Somerset County, offers some of the best singletrack and beautiful fall scenery
in Pennsylvania. If you're looking for a slightly easier ride, the 3-mile
North Woods Ramble offers excellent views of the mountains of western
Pennsylvania. Need more? Check out these
Laurel Highlands mountain biking trails.
The Warrior Trail
This beautiful hiking trail in Greene County, PA was originally a path used for
over 5,000 years by Native Americans heading west to Flint Ridge, OH for
supplies of flint. The entire trail runs for 67 miles from Greensboro, PA on the
Monongahela River in the east to the Ohio River in West Virginia. There is
access at several locations along the trail so you can opt for a long one-day
hike if you wish. Several overnight shelters are also available along the trail.
Mill State Park (walking/hiking)
Several hiking trails, from easy to challenging, along Slippery Rock Creek offer
beautiful fall views. The
Slippery Rock Gorge Trail is the longest (6 miles) and most challenging. It
is designated as part of the North Country
National Scenic Trail. For those looking for a shorter adventure, the
two-mile Kildoo Nature Trail provides easy access to exciting and beautiful
habitats surrounding Slippery Rock Creek.
Park (biking/mountain biking)
A paved, seven-mile bicycle trail winds near the shoreline of Lake Arthur in
this beautiful state park. For those looking for a more rugged adventure, there
is a six-mile loop trail for mountain bikes on the North Shore. Trailheads are
located off of Mt. Union Road and Alexander Ridge Road.
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