Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Industrial Heartland Trails Coalition Creates A Dozen Trail Itineraries To Help Plan Cycling Outings In Western PA, Ohio, WV, NY

Trail users in parts of New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia can now plan bike rides on shared use trails with a bit of help from regional trail advocates. The Industrial Heartland Trails Coalition has produced and updated a dozen trail itineraries for use in a 52-county area.
The self-guided trips are intended to provide information on area trails as well as points of interest and amenities in nearby communities. Included is everything from wetland viewing areas and restored rail tunnels to Fiestaware and favorite ice cream stops.
“We wanted to take some of the work out of planning something as fun as cycling, and to give people some ideas in terms of things to do on and off the trails,” says Frank Maguire, Program Director of Trails and Recreation for the PA Environmental Council, one of the coleads of the trails coalition.
In all, the itineraries offer trip suggestions that cover about 300 miles of trail. They range from an easy nine-mile jaunt in Cuyahoga Valley National Park to one that is closer to 90 miles on the Ghost Town and Hoodlebug trails.
While designed for cycling, the itineraries provide useful ideas for walking as well.
Available Itineraries Most of the itineraries give mile-by-mile suggestions for specific trails. Others, like Scoops ‘N Suds (ice cream and beer stops) and Epic Infrastructure (tunnels, bridges, and industrial relics), are thematic in nature and cover the full 52-county area.
In addition to the itineraries, there is an “Open Trails” Story Map at the same location that gives a good overview of the many miles of trails that are complete and open to the public.
Of the envisioned 1,500-mile network, 47 percent of the mileage is complete, having been built by local and regional trail organizations over the past several decades. 
The Industrial Heartland Trails Coalition consists of more than 100 organizations and stakeholders collaborating to complete and connect a system of 1,500 miles of shared use trails in a four-state area of Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, and West Virginia.
Learn more at the IHTC Facebook page or on Instagram: @ihearttrailscoalition (hashtag #rideIHTC).
For more information on programs, initiatives and special events, visit the PA Environmental Council website, visit the PEC Blog, PEC Bill/Regulation Tracker, follow PEC on Twitter or Like PEC on Facebook.  Visit PEC’s Audio Room for the latest podcasts.  Click Here to receive regular updates from PEC.

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