Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail


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Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail Facts

States: Pennsylvania
Counties: Crawford
Length: 2.9 miles
Trail end points: Hartstown Road at. S. Mercer St. and Fries Road
Trail surfaces: Ballast
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6017051
Trail activities: Mountain Biking, Walking, Cross Country Skiing

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Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail Description

Located on the abandoned Erie and Pittsburgh branch of the Pennsylvania Railroad, this short but intriguing trail runs through Pymatuning State Park, a large and popular two-state recreation area encompassing a 2,500-acre wildlife refuge around Pymatuning Reservoir. (The word Pymatuning is derived from an Iroquois term, probably from the Seneca tribe, that means "crooked-mouthed man's dwelling place.")

Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail, a beautiful 3-mile route adjacent to Linesville Road, crosses the Pymatuning Spillway, which was built in 1930. The Pymatuning Spillway is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the area; it is estimated that more than 300,000 visitors come to view the local beauty and feed bread to the numerous carp that gather around the spillway.

The Pymatuning Spillway is known as the place where "ducks walk on fishes' backs." The area has plenty of attractions, including campgrounds, a fish hatchery and the Game Commission Wildlife Learning Center in the middle of the spillway.

Parking and Trail Access

To reach the spillway trailhead from Interstate 79 North, take Exit 147B for US 322 West and US 6 West toward Conneaut Lake. Merge onto Conneaut Lake Road and US 19/322/6. Follow US 6 for a little more than 7 miles. Continue on PA 6 (Water Street) for another 6 miles and then turn left to stay on PA 6, as it turns left, for 0.5 mile to Linesville. Turn left on South Mercer Street, which turns into Hartstown Road and takes you directly onto the spillway after about 1 mile. Parking is available on spillway on your left and at other locations in the park.

Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail Reviews

Trail is dirt and grass. Very difficult riding on it. Park at the Spillway (will get to that later) and it goes about one mile to Fries Road. Can't go any farther. It goes along the lake and you can partially see the lake. Heading the other direction, trail goes into Linesville. You are better off riding along the side of the road. Rough trail. The trail goes 1 mile in one direction, guessing 1.9 in the other.
At the Spillway you can feed the ducks and fish. Bread was available for sale that day. Restrooms and snack bar at the Spillway.
Pymatuning Lake offers fishing & boating, Camping and Cabins, picnic areas and beaches.

We wanted to go down one of the small trails leading down to the lake. I noticed a small hornets nest at the top. We avoided going down that access trail. It was as you take the trail back from the spillway back towards Espyville.

This could be a nice trail if they would pony up some money and asphalt it.


Bicycle riders should consider dismounting and walking bikes through the Spillways area during peak times as this area can get crowded with pedestrians.

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