Group of 13 hiking/biking trails will link Allegheny Ridge, Allegheny River

Rails-to-trails advocates have announced the formal launch of the Trans Allegheny Trails network.

“The Trans Allegheny Trails are 13 trails that stretch from the Allegheny Ridge to the Allegheny River,” said Laura Hawkins, a greenway coordinator with the Allegheny Ridge Corp., which is working to promote the recreational, historical and economic assets along the Pittsburgh-to-Harrisburg Main Line Canal Greenway.

Starting with Roaring Run Trail in the west, the Trans Allegheny Trails include a nearly continuous string of hiking and biking trails along the Kiski and Conemaugh rivers and Blacklick Creek from North Apollo to Ebensburg.

Also included are spurs to Delmont and Indiana; a trail network around Johnstown; and three trail segments primarily in Blair County.

Hawkins was joined by representatives of the Roaring Run, West Penn, Westmoreland Heritage and Blairsville Riverfront trails for the first of three ceremonies promoting the initiative.

Operators of the individual trails began to combine their efforts in 2011 after the national Rails-to-Trails Conservancy hosted its annual Greenway Sojourn on several of the trails.

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