Great Allegheny Passage Hike 27

Ohiopyle to Connellsville

This is another of the very remote sections of the PHT network. It leaves town across a bridge over the Youghiogheny River and immediately enters dark woods. Just up trail, you cross a spectacular railroad trestle over another bend in the river. Side trails head to the campground here. Within a few miles you pass a trail junction for the Kentuck Trail. North of here there is unbroken solitude all the way to Greene Junction at the edge of Connellsville. The trail crosses the valley on a 731 foot trestle. Minutes later a 746 foot monster brings us into Connellsville proper.

This is a notable spot on the GAP: The route leaves the Western Maryland Railroad, which has been part of or adjacent to the route since Fort Frederick, MD. Through town the trail follows a sectioned off (no cars) piece of Third Street past Crawford Avenue (Route 711) and on to the end of the section at a parking lot in Riverfront Park.


Trip Planner

Start: Ohiopyle
End: Connellsville
Miles: 17.0
Points of Interest: Ohiopyle, Kentuck Trail, Sheepskin Trail, Connellsville
Parking: Ohiopyle (0.0 mi.), Connellsville (17.0 mi.)
Water: Ohiopyle, Connellsville
Restroom or privy: Ohiopyle, Connellsville
Provisions: Ohiopyle, Connellsville
Camping: Ohiopyle State Park


Hike Data

Mile Navigation
0 Ohiopyle. The green painted depot serves as a combination restroom and visitors center. The store, B&B's, hotel and outfitters are all within a few blocks. Plan to stay a while and enjoy the unique atmosphere of the park. Beyond Ohiopyle, the PHT route splits. Backpackers headed to Seward will climb to the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail (see Ohiopyle to Seward). If you're heading to Pittsburgh, cross the bridge and begin contemplating a trucker's sandwich - it's a Pittsburgh thing that pile French fries and coleslaw atop a sandwich for one-handed eating at the wheel.
0.6 State Park Campsites. Turn right up the hill just after you cross the second trestle.
3.3 Kentuck Trail. Leads to a series of trails in the Forbes State Forest.
6.6 Cross Pipeline.
15.1 Cross Trestle. The abandoned grade below is the Sheepskin Trail.
16.6 Join Third Street.
16.8 Cross Crawford Avenue in Connellsville. This is the main street. Most services are within a few blocks including Amtrak, B&B's, restaurants and shops. Motels are a bit further.
17.0 Yough Park. From Yough Park pass under US 119 and climb the ramp to continue north on the old Pittsburgh & Lake Erie grade. If you see a stone milepost #58 (signifying the number of miles to Pittsburgh) then you're in the right place.


Explore the PHT

This little town in a park is a bit of a fantasy come true. Take the natural beauty and outdoor recreation of the state park, mix several small businesses to provide services and hospitality, add a cappuccino and sip. Ohiopyle is a place that many park-town partnerships aspire to be, but few realize. Perhaps most famous for whitewater rafting, there is a network of short trails, bicycling and fishing. Cross country skiing and snowshoeing offer the best way to solitude in the woods in winter. Late afternoons are special. People of all ages lounge and wander about town—all still aglow after some outdoor adventure. And the Youghiogheny Trail is the main thoroughfare. Just a few miles north on Rt. 381 is Falling Water, the famous home built by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Kentuck Trail
This trail links to a series of foot trails in the Forbes State Forest. The West Virginia line is 38 miles, then it’s just a short jog to the 330 mile Allegheny Trail, which can be followed south to the Appalachian Trail near Pearisburg, Virginia.

Sheepskin Trail
This trail will run 32 miles from Point Marion, Pa., to Connellsville (check status). The line features a tunnel near the village of Outcrop. When complete, it will link the GAP to the Mon River Trail in West Virginia.

The town is known for Italian food and very friendly folks. Amtrak is well positioned here for shorter trips either north to Pittsburgh or south to Cumberland. If you enjoy industrial history this is a great place to spend some time. There are also a number of grand churches here as well as a library built by Andrew Carnegie.

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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