Pittsburgh, PA: Laurel Highlands Trail

Witness southwest Pennsylvania at is wildest on a three-day, 31-mile shuttle along and over river valleys.
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Witness southwest Pennsylvania at is wildest on a three-day, 31-mile shuttle along and over river valleys.

Get to know part of Pennsylvania's only fully state-maintained long distance trail and stay at an Adirondack-style shelter on this challenging 3-day, 31-mile shuttle hike. Start in Ohiopyle State Park with a 530-foot climb to stirring views of the Youghioheny River. This is the longest climb of the first day, but the rolling hills continue throughout the hike. Reach the shelter via a blue-blazed access trail not long after the 6-mile marker. On day 2, start a 12.2-mile trek along the trail's steepest segment, climbing 1,100 feet to a plateau, then follow a boulder-strewn trail to another shelter near PA 653. On day 3, hike an easy 3.5 miles to another lookout, then continue 8.2 miles to your car. Consider adding a fourth day by hiking 5.5 miles to the Grindle Ridge shelters on day 3, then the remaining 6.3 miles to the parking lot on PA 31 the next morning.--Hike submitted by Donna L. Ruff, author of 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Pittsburgh (Menasha Ridge Press)

Waypoints

Ohiopyle, Pennsylvania

Location: 39.8690529, -79.493187

Ohiopyle State Park