Cheat Lake Trail

West Virginia

14 Reviews

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Cheat Lake Trail Facts

States: West Virginia
Counties: Monongalia
Length: 4.5 miles
Trail end points: Lake Lynn Power Station on Bunker Hill Rd. (Pennsylvania state line) and Cheat Lake (Greystone)
Trail surfaces: Crushed Stone
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6017382

Cheat Lake Trail Description

The Cheat Lake Trail is the result of a generous donation of land by Allegheny Energy (now FirstEnergy) near its Lake Lynn Power Station on scenic Cheat Lake. The area was once home to West Penn Beach, a cluster of vacation cottages available for rent by company employees in the 1920s.

While the rental properties are no more, the original appeal of dense woodlands and scenic lake views remains. The Cheat Lake Trail courses through this landscape on a former rail corridor, offering ample opportunities to view local flora and fauna. Perhaps the best spot is at the trail’s southern end near Greystone, where a nature viewing area is dedicated for this purpose.

Farther north, a fishing platform, boat dock, playground and picnic tables can be found in the Cheat Lake Trail’s adjacent park.

Parking and Trail Access

The Cheat Lake Trail can be accessed via the Cheat Lake exit on Interstate 68. Follow the signs for State Route 857 and turn left onto the highway. Then turn left onto Morgans Run Road. Be careful, as the road is narrow. Morgans Run Road ends at the trail’s main parking area.

Cheat Lake Trail Reviews

Cheat Lake Trail

Enjoyed the trail very much. Very pleasant scenery with the lake. We parked at the north end of the trail near the Lake Lynn Dam and Hydro Power Plant. As noted in previous comments, there is a steep hill with stairs to get between the parking and the trail. I counted the steps. There are 96 steps, with landings every 11 steps, which is about twice as much as estimates from previous comments. For me, I was really tired after carrying our bicycles up the steps at the end of our ride. I will definitely try to find my way to the other parking if we come back, despite other comments indicating that other parking seems hard to get to.

nice and flat

Based on other reviews, i decided to go to main parking lot where the playground is located to try to prevent blocked entrances or stairways. Getting to that main parking lot was not the best drive. It was kinda creepy and there was only 1 other car beside me. But once I got to the trail, it was fine. Very quiet given there was only 2 of us out there at the time. From the beginning of the trail, left side is 3.5 miles and right side is the other.9 miles. Back and forth it is 9 miles Views were great.

South Trail is closed

Disappointed to find out the south portion of the trail is closed for renovations. Parked at the Lake Lynn side and walked about 1.5 miles before turning around. The trail is crushed limestone/gravel so it’s easily navigable in most shoes. Hopefully the rest of the trail reopens.


Went here on 8-2-2020 and regretted it immediately when we saw that in order to access the trail we had to traverse a very steep and rocky hill or take the 50ish stairs. If there were alternative parking areas there was no information saying as much. Since we had driven so far, we risked the hill (by steep, I mean unreasonable to walk especially with a bike) only to find that there was a padlocked gate blocking the trail after approx one mile. Beware of high volumes of pedestrian traffic. Doubt I would ever return.


cheat lake trail 8/2/20

We accessed the trail from the park/beach/pick nick area. We parked in the designated area, unloaded the bikes, took the trail toward the dam, then peddled back toward Greystone and found the gate padlocked with a sign “NOTICE SOUTH TRAIL CLOSED” Not sure why the trail is closed nor am I sure why there couldn’t be a sign at the parking area about the closure. Regardless, it was very disappointing

beautiful... but not without flaws

I went onto this trail at the northern terminus at the dam / power station as a detour from a longer road bike ride I was taking. Be forewarned: there are long steep stairs down to the trail at this end. Be prepared to carry your bike, stroller, whatever, ~40 steps.

For the first northernmost half-mile or so, there was a lot of big gravel on the trail. This was unpleasant and a rough ride and not like the reliable fine surface of other area trails (such as Mon River or Decker's Creek). But it was only 1/2 mile like that.

The worse problem was that ~2.5 miles south, the trail was gated and locked. This was a nice weekday, 330PM, late August before Labor Day weekend... I talked to another biker on the trail, and he said that the gate should've been unlocked by park staff. So unfortunately almost half the trail was randomly inaccessible this day. I did not go find any park staff and I do not know the gate locking schedule.

This is a beautiful trail though with lake-bridges and park amenities (restrooms, water fountains [not working], swimming beach, picnic tables, playground,...). I'd go here again to walk or swim but not out my way to ride here.

Nice trail

While in the area we decided to walk along this trail. Parked at the lot on top of the hill which is located on Morgans Run Road. This is also the parking lot for Cheat Lake Park. Walk down the hill and there is a small playground with restrooms. The trail runs in each direction. We walked along the lake towards the dam site. At the dam end of the trail (approx one mile from the park area) there are steps and at the top is another parking lot. That parking lot is literally on the border of Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
The trail is flat and follows the lake on one side and a wooded hill on the other side.
A nice trial to visit if you're in the area.


I ran this trail today. I was definitely not expecting the steep stairs at the beginning if the trail (and to finish up a 9 mile run) but it is a very beautiful place and well taken care of. Very glad I chose to go there.

The trail is fantastic

This is a really nice trail - the farthest ends of it can be steep on the sides, if you have young children, but the trail is overall wide enough. We parked on the Lake Lynn side - you have to carry your bikes up and down many steps and a large hill if you do this. The hill at the Cheat Lake park is not as steep. There are bathrooms at the park, picnic tables, playground, and water access, if you want to make a day of your trip! The trail has beautiful scenery and you can see the hydroelectric plant from the northern end. The southern end of the trail is a bench and a fence.

Enjoyable quick bike or hike

The area is lush and full of nature, but there is a constant reminder that you are not too far from residential areas. There is also the consistent sound of sport boats zipping by. The trail is flat but the scenery fills in the lack of excitement. Defiantly best for the person whose trying to go for a more casual relaxing bike or hike.

Decent hike

The trail is accessed from a parking lot up a very steep hill, something to consider when you decide who you are walking with there.

One direction: the trail, we say, "goes to Pennsylvania" and ends about twenty-thirty minutes in walking. Nice and flat and easy, scenic on the lake.

The other direction: playground, picnic area, restrooms, and a little beach for the kids to play. You walk right on the lake, sometimes at first in full sun, then into a shaded trail that follows the "backyards" of houses that abut Cheat Lake. I believe this direction trail ends about 45-75 minutes in.

Sometimes its not worth the drive out or the steep access to parking for our family. I suggest you drop off at the bottom and park at the top.Especially with bicycles.

Have I ready reviewed this trail? Can't remember...

I rode this trail earlier this month en route to Maryland. It is a really nice trail that took about 1.5 hours to ride (or less). The parking is limited and is hard to find (there are no signs); however, all in all, this is a good trail and it was a nice break in my road trip.

Great Find!

This trail is a hidden gem with many points of interest. Parking is a little out-of the way, but well worth the effort.

The entire trail is lakeside and largely wooded. It crosses 3 causeways with spectacular lake views. From Morgan's Run, I rode north and was surprised to catch glimpses of the dam and Hydro-power station. Then I back-tracked to the south, and was equally surprised to discover a rather isolated beach area complete with facilities. Mill Stone beach is peppered with huge millstones from area gristmills that were in operation before the turn of the century. How the millstones got there, I haven't a clue.

Further south are rustic private docks over a steep embankment, accessible by endless flights of stairs crossing the trail and ascending to private homes just beyond view.

One can also catch an occasional glimpse of lakeside mansions dotting the opposite shore.

Wonderful short round trip of about 8 miles or so. July 27th, 2015.

Cheat lake trail

My 7 year old son and I went to this trail in July, 2015. The trail was very short because part of the trail was closed just south of the parking area. He is learning to ride and the trail was packed down good enough for him to enjoy the short ride we were able to take. The playground offered some alternative activity for him and that gave us a chance to go a short distance to the north but had to turn around because of rain. I recommend this trail for small kids because of the playground and the good packed surface for young rider's. This gives them the opportunity to ride on gravel and learn how to handle their bicycles with relative ease. There is a small swimming area their also that I was not prepared for, bring swimsuit for kids. High foot traffic area though. Good recreation ride for kids and/or family time with limited time.

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