Can we cross-country ski on the Montour Trail?
Definitely! The recent snow dump has made the pathway skier-friendly. The Montour Trail is not “groomed.” Notice that users made ski tracks off to the side of the trail — try not to walk through these (or let your dog trod on them), since the first skier expended a great deal of effort to break through the fresh snow. Skiers use the same set of tracks no matter the direction they are heading, so be respectful of others who you encounter. Since the Trail closes at dusk, we do not advise night skiing. If you are thinking about trying the sport, you’re likely to find a retail outlet in the Pittsburgh area that rents cross-country ski equipment. Enjoy!
Social-Distancing Recommendations for Using Montour Trail
– Keep a distance of 6 feet between you and others at all times.
– Warn others of your presence and allow proper distance when you pass. Step off the Trail if needed.
– Water fountains are temporarily closed. Carry water, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes with you.
– Do not gather in groups.
– Whatever you pack in, pack out. This includes cigarette butts. Leave no trash.
– Stay home if you have flu symptoms or are not feeling well.
Walk. Run. Bike. Camp.
If you live near Pittsburgh, one of the the nation’s outstanding rail-trails is right in your back yard!
The Montour Trail is a multi-use, non-motorized recreational pathway around Pittsburgh, the country’s longest suburban rail-trail. The main line extends ~47 miles; branch routes increase length to 60+ miles. The relatively flat half-loop stretches from Coraopolis (along the Ohio River) to Clairton (on the Monongahela River). A northwest branch connects directly to Pittsburgh International Airport.
The Trail is easy to get to by car, as there are access areas and trailheads every few miles along the route. Pittsburgh’s rapid transit system runs near some of these, and it is bike friendly. The Trail is ADA accessible as well.
The Montour connects to other rails-to-trails in western Pennsylvania and beyond: the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) and the C&O Canal Towpath, a completed trail system that stretches 300+ miles from Pittsburgh to Washington, DC.; the Panhandle Trail — a converted railroad line that stretches from Weirton, West Virginia, to Carnegie. And this local resource is part of U.S. Bicycle Route 50, which runs east-west and, when completed, will span the country.
Currently, 46 miles of the Montour Trail are continuous with several short gaps in the southeast section.