My wife and I have only been riding trails for a year and a half now, but have put on about 2000 miles in that time (we have no lives outside of riding). Most of our riding is done in Eastern Pennsylvania/Northern Md. and have hit most of the trails in this area. Up until now, our favorite trail had been the Pine Creek trail (from Jersey Shore to Wellsboro). That was until we did this trail. As other reviewers have said, the section from Confluence to Ohiopyle is especially nice. The views are incredible, and the trail it's self is a very nice riding surface. One note to anyone reading this, don't be too alarmed by the overcast skys first thing in the morning. It looked like it was going to rain hard, (even thought the forecast called for a beautiful day), but just like that, it cleared off around 9:30 A.M. One of the locals said this is very typical for this area, I guess because of the way it's situated in relation to the nearby mountains.
We were planning on doing the Pine creek ride this October to see the leaves, but now are reconsidering, and will more than likely come back to the Youghiogheny River trail instead. As beautiful as it was in the summer, it has to be spectacular in the autumn. For us, it was a 3 1/2 hr drive to get to, but worth it. Highly recomended, DON'T MISS THIS ONE!
Prettiest section of the GAP
"This section of the Great Allegheny Passage is by far the prettiest and most scenic of the whole trail. From Confluence on up to Connellsville it has the feel of riding through a state park (which part of it is). The section from Confluence up to Ohiopyle is probably one of the most, if not THE most used section of the trail, especially on weekends....and for a good reason.
My favorite ride is Confluence to Ohiopyle, about 11 miles long. On this section you'll experience riding through really pretty wooded terrain, nice views of the river, and in Summer you'll see lots of boaters and kayakers on the river.
Ohiopyle is a great destination because you've got the Ohiopyle Falls, Cucumber Falls, the natural waterslides, the Ferncliff Natural area, the views from the two bike trail bridges over the river, and the restored train station/information center. Just up the road a short drive is Frank Loyd Wright's ""Fallingwater"" house too. There are several places to eat in both towns, as well as overnight lodging, and rafting rental/bike rental shops too.
If you plan on doing this section of trail plan on bringing a camera with you, especially in the Fall when the leaves change."