Bike Rent & Where to Ride: Pittsburgh, PA
A colleague & I will be visiting Pittsburgh PA in the next 3 weeks for business, and would like to continue training while away on business (from Johannesburg, South Africa).
We're busy training for a local stage race - the Sani2C
Awesome 3 day race, you can Google for the website using the above name for more information.
We need advise please on the following:
- Where to rent mountain bikes (at reasonable rates)?
- Where can we do rides of about 50 miles & about 2500ft ascend?
Last edited by JMJ; 04-08-2013 at 07:33 AM.
There are probably 20 different parks to ride within an hour of Pittsburgh. None of them will have 50 miles of trail or a ton of elevation. However the trails can be up and down and technical enough to tire out pretty much anyone in 30 miles or less. Most group rides are more like 15 or 20. Almost no trails are marked and maps are rare so you'd be better off with a local guide.
Which part of town will you be staying in? That'll determine which park makes sense. Sorry, no idea where to rent a real mountain bike. If you're in my part of town I'd be happy to show you some of my favorite technical singletrack. Here's the latest sample within the city limits:
Crater Trail - April 5th 2013 - YouTube
And trails an hour out of town:
Moraine State Park - March 30th 2013 - YouTube
Group rides are sometimes posted to the PORC website so that's a good place to start.
PORC Pittsburgh Mountain Biking, Western Pennsylvania Mountain Biking
Re: Bike Rent & Where to Ride: Pittsburgh, PA
I am not sure of the dates that you will be coming but there is a brady's run park 6 hr race on May 5th. You and your partner could do it solo or as a two man team!
Great people, technical riding, and good climbs.
You can check it out on bikereg.com or ask me.
As far as renting a bike...i am not sure. Maybe you could rent a demo bike for riding.
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Sorry to say, but outside of true mountain biking hotspots, bike rentals (particularly for serious mountain biking use) can be few and far between. I can't recommend any shops off hand b/c I never had to rent in Pittsburgh. If no one replies with help, I'll ask a friend and try to post some info.
As far as getting some distance with a bit of climbing in: there are a bunch of trail systems close by, but none are going to be 50 miles without repeating some of it. However, I think that loops around the lake at North Park (on the MTB trails) would be able to approach 50 miles easily (you might need 2 or 3 loops; I doubt it would be 4, but maybe ....), of course it depends on your exact course) and, while it is "flat", there is a lot of smaller climbs. I don't know what it would add up to, but I'll try to find old GPS logs.
Here's the maps for North Park (look for the North Park, Central and South maps):
Parks Department Maps
Here's the location of the Park with respect to Pittsburgh:
Boyce Park also has nice riding, but is probably a little more confusing and you won't be able to "just crank" as much.
I second Moraine for a lot of fun.
Another option, east of Pittsburgh, about 1 hour, is the Laurel Highlands. There are some longer options there (see Laurel Mountain then Suggested Routes which is 24 for one loop):
LHORBA : Mountain Bike Rides
Many Thanks to all the responses, I will be investigation all the options mentioned.
We are staying in the Washington/Houston area.
I found this website with equipment hire - any thoughts: Great Allegheny Passage | GAP | Mountain Biking - PA Pennsylvania Ski Resort | Four Season Resort | Seven Springs Mountain Resort - 7 Springs
That website is for the seven springs ski resort. I go downhill biking there in the summer. It is an hour drive from pittsburgh or where you will be staying. The GAP trail is an old railroad route that has been converted into a pedestrian trail. It isn't mountain biking but is a good road bike or cross bike trail.
Near Washington Pennsylvania, Hillman state park has good mountain biking. People around here sometimes refer to that park as bavington.
There's bike rental downtown: Bikes and Rates | Golden Triangle Bike Rental
And bike share with Dirty Harry's: Bike share program under way in Verona - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
That's about all I'm aware of though.
If you're staying in Washington, Bavington (aka Hillman State Park) will be your best bet.
You'd have to repeat some stuff to get in 50 miles, but there's a lotta trail out there. Definitely good to have a guide if possible (there's lots of rides out there on Sundays) but there are some maps around, but I'd definitely recommend having GPS just in case you get turned around.
Frick park is awesome, so is Boyce.
Laurel Highlands will give you plenty of elevation change, too.
Oh noes. I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid.
So, if you're south of the city, getting to Verona for bikes is going to be annoying ... unless you ride North Park or Boyce.
Here's another thought: you could probably get bikes in Ohiopyle (google for shops) and either ride near there (which is still Laurel Highlands area) or take a slight drive and ride Quebec Run -- which is a really cool wilderness area. I've never ridden Quebec Run, but I've hiker there (and helped mountain bikers we found in the middle of friggin' nowhere). Talking to any potential rental shops in Ohiopyle might give you more ideas.
Getting to Seven Springs area isn't bad from Washington (basically a straight shot on interstates, maybe 1 hour or so drive). Seven Springs also ties into a lot of the Laurel Highlands trails, so you can do non-downhill there. You can also try to find the "Month of Mud" trail at Seven Springs which you could do loops on.
Sorry to semi-hijack the thread, but where's the trail head for that Crater Trail? (specifically, that is. I know it's in Frick somewhere).
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