Natural beauty, fascinating historical features, and length: The Ghost Town Trail is a 36-mile long ‘rails to trails’ trail that blends these qualities and throws in a bit of challenge for flavor. The trail includes a 32-mile portion that stretches from Blairsville, PA to Ebensburg, PA, as well as a 4-mile spur called the Rexis Branch that stretches from the Eliza Furnace to Red Mill Rd. in Vintondale, PA. Named for the long-gone coal-mining communities that once dotted its right-of-way, the GTT flows past two massive iron furnaces, old coal-loading tipples, boney (coal-refuse) piles and other traces of industrial history. The Blacklick Creek valley in which it is situated is gorgeous, with mountain streams, stands of rhododendron, dozens of wildflower species and cool woodlands.
8 trailheads (map will provide directions)
424 Prave Street Ebensburg, PA 15931
Nanty Glo: 40.471959,-78.83597
1097 1st Street, Nanty Glo, PA 15943
Twin Rocks: 40.490504,-78.861355
1397 Plank Road, Nanty Glo, PA 15943
1069 Main Street, Vintondale, PA 15961
2415 Wehrum Road Vintondale, PA 15961
7452 Route 403 Highway, Dilltown, PA 15929
10485 Route 259 Highway, Blairsville, PA 15717
John P. Saylor Park: 40.47413,-79.192096
1284 Old Indiana Road, Blairsville, PA 15717
As it climbs the western slope of the Allegheny Front, the Ghost Town Trail totals 46 miles in length. There is a:
- 32-mile main stem from Blacklick to Ebensburg.
- 4-mile Rexis Branch from Vintondale to U.S. 422.
- 8-mile C&I Branch from U.S. 422 to Expedit Road.
- 2-mile C&I Branch from Vic Miller Road to Snake Road.
With the exception of the C&I Branch, which is unimproved and still under development, the GTT has a crushed limestone surface. At Vintondale, the trail divides and follows two branches of Blacklick Creek.