The Laurel Highlands of southwestern Pennsylvania offers so many natural sights and outdoor must-sees that it is difficult to know where to start. With eight state parks and two state forests, we are here to help you sort through the mix and find the top hiking and biking trails in the area.
While some opt to rough it by camping in our rolling hills and steep mountains, we know that is not for everyone. We would love to host your stay after a long day of adventure in our cozy, casual-luxury bed and breakfast.
Rated: Easy | Length: 2.0 miles | Type: Loop
Popular among both hikers and bikers, the Ferncliff Trail is connected to the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) Trail. The famous GAP Trail runs over 150 miles between northern Pennsylvania and Maryland and just so happens to cross through our very own Ohiopyle State Park! Cross the GAP bridge to join this trail that runs along the breathtaking Youghiogheny River. This trail offers unique views of flat rocks and rare flora and fauna. While this trail is only 2.0 miles, it is interconnected to many different routes in the area, so we recommend taking a good chunk of the day to explore the unique ambiance.
Pumphouse/Tram Road Trail
Rated: Easy | Length: 1.6 miles | Type: Loop
Located in Laurel Hill State Park, the Pumphouse and Tram Road Trails are extremely popular among locals and travelers alike. To reach this stunning swimming hole, waterfall, and trail, follow the sign past Jones Mill Dam. This trail is a very popular photograph-taking destination, so make sure you bring your camera! This easy trail also offers longer, more moderately rated trails if you are looking for more of a challenge. After following the sign to Jones Mill Dam, you can either retrace your steps back to your car or continue onto Pumphouse Trail or Tram Road Trail for a more extended hiking experience. These trails will loop back to your vehicle.
Rated: Easy | Length: 0.3 miles | Type: Out & Back
Looking for an easy waterfall hike? Check out Cucumber Falls in Ohiopyle State Park. Easily one of the most popular waterfalls in Pennsylvania, this short and easy hike is a must-see. We recommend going early in the morning or late afternoon to avoid crowds.
Wolf Rocks Trail
Rated: Moderate | Length: 4.3 miles | Type: Loop
Check out Wolf Rocks Trail in Laurel Summit State Park for a longer adventure. This trail is known for hiking, mountain biking, and snowshoeing. Views from the top give a scenic outlook of Wolf Rocks and Forbes State Forest. Described as rocky, rooty, and sometimes muddy, we recommend wearing a good pair of hiking shoes for this trek.
Adams Falls Loop
Rated: Moderate | Length: 1.3 miles | Type: Loop
Enjoy the Adams Falls Loop hike through the old-growth forests of Linn Run State Park. Walk along this rocky trail to see rhododendron, hemlock, and a lovely mountain waterfall. Lovers of both hiking and running mainly use this trail.
Rated: Moderate | Length: 3.7 miles | Type: Loop
Check out one of Ohiopyle State Park’s newest mountain biking and hiking trail: McCune Trail. This trail runs along a stunning ridge that offers views of the state park, various habitats, a pond, and the decaying springhouse of the old McCune homestead. Remnants of their old stone wall are present opposite the old springhouse. The McCune Trail provides an excellent opportunity to see PA’s endless nature while also getting a historical and sightseeing experience.
Rated: Moderate-Hard | Length: 4.8 miles | Type: Loop
For one of the best hiking and biking trails in southwestern PA, check out Baughman Trail. This trail offers a little bit of everything from the rare flora and fauna to rock structures, overlooks, and water features. This trail can be accessed by parking in the GAP Trail lot near Sheridan Street. Not only is this trail connected to a network of different and fun trails in Ohiopyle State Park, but it offers one of the best views of the Youghiogheny River Gorge.
There you have it! We hope you enjoy this comprehensive list of some of the top hiking and biking trails in southwestern PA. There are so many incredible natural landscapes in the area, and we hope this list helps get you started on your next southwestern PA adventure. As always, remember to follow the Leave No Trace principles and help us keep Pennsylvania wild.
After a long day out exploring nature, there is nothing better than sitting back, relaxing, and enjoying a fresh, home-cooked meal. Relax in one of our cozy luxury rooms before joining us for a peaceful individual or community Hartzell House meal. End your southwestern PA adventure in comfort. Book now.