Allegheny River Trail

Trail Map

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With a wide, paved pathway and adjacent equestrian trail running through lush woodland and riverside terrain, the Allegheny River Trail (ART) has something to offer every trail enthusiast. Following a segment of the Allegheny River that is part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, the trail extends from the Samuel Justus Recreation Trail in Franklin south to Emlenton. Farther south, a disconnected segment of the trail stretches 3 miles between Foxburg and Parker.

The Scrubgrass Generating Company acquired the rail corridor after the Allegheny Valley Railroad stopped using it in 1984. Scrubgrass Generating donated the property to the nonprofit Allegheny Valley Trails Association, which is building an extensive rail-trail system in northwestern Pennsylvania.

The trailhead begins 5 miles downriver from the Franklin Belmar railroad bridge. Built in 1907 the picturesque bridge offers a spectacular view of the river and wildlife. At the Belmar bridge, the trail connects with the 8-mile, paved Sandy Creek Trail, which runs east to the village of Van. Eventually, it will connect with the Clarion Highlands Trail to offer 46 miles of trail.

The Allegheny River Trail is also one of several trails that make up the growing Erie to Pittsburgh Trail in western Pennsylvania. One day, the trail network will extend from Lake Erie to the confluence of the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers in Pittsburgh.

Parking and Trail Access

To reach the Franklin trailhead (on the north end of the trail), take Route 8 North to its junction with US 322. Take US 322, which becomes 8th Street in Franklin and crosses the Allegheny River. The trailhead parking lot is on the right. The lot sign says "Samuel Justus Trail," which is the rail-trail going north from Franklin. The Allegheny River Trail goes south from the lot.

To reach the Belmar trailhead for both the Allegheny River and Sandy Creek trails, take Route 8 South from Franklin. Continue 3 miles, turn left on Pone Lane and pass Sandy Creek High School. Continue to Belmar Road. Turn right on Belmar and follow the road to the trailhead parking lot at the river.

Farther south, there are four additional trailheads in the communities along the trail (from north to south): Brandon, Rockland Station, Emlenton, and Foxburg. Please visit the Allegheny Valley Trails Association for the specific facilities available at each trailhead.

 

Reviews

Great Trail

   March, 2016 by outdoor814

I rode the trail on a 3/26/16 which was a beautiful day. This was my trip on the ART and it was well worth the drive. The tunnels were great, the trail was well maintained, very easy ride, and the little communities along the trail are amazing. Would ...read more

Great Ride on Easter Sunday from Franklin to Emlenton, PA

   March, 2016 by mamadearest45

My boyfriend and I have rode this trail a few times in the last year. We are from the Cleveland, Ohio area. We visited again on Easter Sunday. What a beautiful day. I speak for both of us when I say that this has to be one of our favorite rail trails. I ...read more

Franklin to Belmar Bridge

   September, 2015 by kjw979

Planned on riding this trail further but ended up detouring onto Sandy Creek Trail. This is a great trail, well maintained with great views of Allegheny River. Plan on returning to ride again. read more