Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail


12 Reviews

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Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail Facts

States: Pennsylvania
Counties: Crawford
Length: 3.2 miles
Trail end points: Fries Rd & Redberry St and South Chestnut Street (Linesville)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6017051

Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail Description

Located on the abandoned Erie and Pittsburgh branch of the Pennsylvania Railroad, this short but intriguing paved 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.") 

Running adjacent to Linesville Road, the Pymatuning State Park Spillway Trail is a beautiful 3.2-mile route that 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

Pretty Foliage

Mid October, some pretty fall foliage but not full color. Parked at the Spillway and fed the fish, don't forget to bring (old) bread. Biked the trail back and forth a few times. Enjoyable ride!

First time in the area, and I found this trail on this app and was not disappointed! Take time to see the spillover and have and ice cream before finishing your ride.

First time in the area, and I found this trail on this app and was not disappointed! Take time to see the spillover and have and ice cream before finishing your ride.

Short and sweet!

Nicely updated trail! The former section of cinder and dirt has been grated and paved. Total length is now 3.2 miles. We parked at the Spillway and fed the fish. Trail goes 2.2 miles North into Linesville, passing the fish hatchery. The new bridge over a creek has been installed. After the ride on the new section, we traveled South 1 mile to Fries Road. That section pavement is only a year old. Nice trail within Pymatuning state park.


Biked on the trail was very cool! Stopped on the trail and fed the ducks and fish! Had a great day highly recommend it.


Nice Walk

Nice walk on black top surface. South end is more scenic along the creek, but got some great pics north side of the spillway trail of some bald eagles patrolling the lake and lily pads.

One mile is newly paved

Brand new asphalt pavement, September 2021. They were finishing up the work the day we were there. Trail is gravel coming out of Linesville. At the spillway parking lot, the trail starts asphalt pavement and runs smooth to Fries Road. All in all, about one mile is asphalt paved.
Plans are in the future to pave more of the trail and even extend it.
In the meantime, enjoy the fresh new asphalt.
Great for a short bike ride, wheelchair accessible, roller blading, walking, jogging and strollers!

Short but sweet

Trail could certainly use some help. Mostly grass with some sections where there is a little gravel. Very bumpy. We started at the Spillway which for the most part is dead center of the trail. Nothing is marked as to beginning or end; just kind of stops at both ends. If you're looking for short and flat, but rough, this is the trail for you.

July update

No recent reviews so I thought it was time. Yes the trail could use some tlc, but it’s not that bad. Rode the whole length, yes lots of grass but very level and no traffic. Lots of shade few bugs and found two side trails that you can walk and explore. First time to see the fish very unusual.

Needs work!

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.

Be careful

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.

Could be a nice trail but right now it's not!

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

Just an idea

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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