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  1. #1
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    planning a biking/camping trip to southwestern PA

    My husband and I are planning a camping trip in May to ride the Great Allegheny Trail (or at least a portion of it) and wanted to find places to camp along the route. We are focusing on the southern end. I was researching Ohiopyle State Park and that looks pretty nice - plus it looks like there is some good riding there as well. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
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    Just Southwest Huntingdon PA is Raystown lake, that has a super fun trail system as well as camping right at the trails at Raystown lake recreational area. The trails are super flowy buff single track they were designed and built by the US army corp of engineers for mountain biking. Super fun its like an all day pump track the way they twist and flow lots of fun ups and downs, whoops etc. I believe there is something like 40miles of trail ? The actual name of the trail system is "Allegrippis Trails" Allegrippis Trails at Raystown Lake, Seven Points Recreation Area at Raystown Lake, raystown.org

  3. #3
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    ps Allegrippis trail system was ranked #1 by singletracks.com there is a list of trail systems in PA ranked here
    The BEST Mountain Bike Trails in Pennsylvania || SINGLETRACKS.COM

  4. #4
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    Which direction are you riding? Start/stop points? There is mountain biking to be had at Ohiopyle - but it is not for the faint of heart. Most of the trails out there are hiking only and those that do allow bikes make for some very long, technical climbs.

    Raystown lake is great, but kind of out of the way - being about an hour and a half drive from the nearest section of the GAP/MD rail trail (approx Hancock, MD) and about 2.5 hours from Ohiopyle.

    If driving is an option, I would have to point you towards laurel ridge state park and forbes state forest (they border each other) about 30 minutes driving away from Ohiopyle. The riding there is still going to be fairly technical, but the elevation change isn't quite as extreme as at Ohiopyle, plus there's lots more bikeable trail.

    Knowing your driving options and your start/stop points on the GAP will help point you guys in a good direction.
    Oh noes. I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the suggestions. tammie - We have ridden at Allegrippis a couple of years ago and had a blast! I agree with you - the trails are unbelievable - I felt like I was on a roller-coaster much of the time. jcaino - we are going to start at the southern end and work our way up. We don't have exact plans, but lets say we start at Ohiopyle and work our way up towards Pittsburgh. We have a week to ride - so I am not sure how far we would go. Sounds like Ohiopyle would be good for camping, but probably too technical for us to ride there.

  6. #6
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    I have ridden the entire area from many trips over the years when visiting relatives. I have camped at Ohiopyle, Laurel and Big Bear, and yes it is difficult terrain, but planning my next bike packing trip later this summer to camp at Ohiopyle and travel via mostly dirt roads/trails the Quebec Run. You can do it with some research, basically use White Tail trail off Skyline Drive.

    Please be wary of Quebec you can get turned around and lost. I have a recommended route map, let me know if you decide to go there, I will find it.

    Camping is allowed at Quebec Run, but restricted to backpack-type camping and permits are required if you stay more than one night at any campsite. Permits are recommended anyway so officials will know where you are and when you're due back.

    Big Bear is FANTASTIC! nuff said...

    Laurel, just doesn't stop providing you with hundreds of miles of trails, a lifetime of riding.

    While camping at Ohiopyle, and if you get a chance make friends with a local and have them drive you to the top of Sugarloaf mountain and ride back the 3 plus miles of downhill trail. Or you can do like I did and ride up the mountain then descend but it is a long uphill climb...LOL

    Here's a few:
    Mountain Biking Ohiopyle & The Laurel Highlands

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_mtb View Post
    Thanks for the suggestions. tammie - We have ridden at Allegrippis a couple of years ago and had a blast! I agree with you - the trails are unbelievable - I felt like I was on a roller-coaster much of the time. jcaino - we are going to start at the southern end and work our way up. We don't have exact plans, but lets say we start at Ohiopyle and work our way up towards Pittsburgh. We have a week to ride - so I am not sure how far we would go. Sounds like Ohiopyle would be good for camping, but probably too technical for us to ride there.

    If you need a rest between Ohiopyle and Pittsburgh, Hazelbakers in Perryopolis has primitive camping spots. If you make it to Pittsburgh and want to get some trail riding in, Frick Park is just a few miles (mostly through parks - only about 2 road miles) away and has some really great trails. There's lots of regular rides out there of all skill levels, so we could probably even get you hooked up with a group. If you definitely want some singletrack, I would highly recommend Frick.
    Oh noes. I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid.

  8. #8
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    Great, thanks! I'll check out the link for Ohiopyle & Laurel Highlands. Sounds like there is a ton of riding/camping out there.

  9. #9
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    Thanks - I'll take a look at Hazelbakers and Perryopolis. My guess is we wont make it to Pittsburgh on this trip. I'd love to go up there at some point to explore- I have heard that the area beautiful.

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