Northwest Lancaster County River Trail is a 14.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Marietta, Pennsylvania that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Fun, hike that can be as quick or long as you make it. Kids and dogs can successfully hike it, though there is a steep portion at the beginning/end. The ruins of an 1845 Henry Clay furnace are a highlight. The trailhead is located just north of the parking lot at Breezyview Overlook on the southern end of Chickie's Rock park. The trail immediately descends 200 feet via a steep trail. For the most part it is easily navigable, but there are a couple of places where the loose rocks, angles, and lack of anything to hold onto make a tricky spot. Trekking poles or walking sticks are definitely nice to have. About 3/4 of the way down there is a bridge crossing a gully. One board of the bridge had rotted out, but otherwise it was solid as of 9/2013. At the base of the descent you intersect an old railroad bed. Go right (north) and the ruins of an old iron furnace will be on the right. When you intersect with the Norfolk-Southern rail line, you're at the base of Chickie's Rock. Note that hunting is allowed in the area through which the trail passes. Wear orange for visibility and safety.
Awesome paved trail, my daughter and I biked 5 miles..
Easy! I parked in Marietta and went south towards Columbia, then turned around at the PA462 ramp. On my way back, I diverted up the Breezeway trail (fun!) to catch the amazing views from the gazebo area. Then I descended the trail to get back on the path to my car. At Chiques Rock, Eric Sauder from ValleyToSummit was helping a friend teach their family rock climbing, which I'm thinking of signing up for because I witnessed Eric's 6 yr old son Preston climb one of the craggy faces as if it were the jungle gym at a playground...yeah, he was that good!!
It's very beautiful, peaceful, and right by the river. The trail has paved riding paths, nice picnic areas, a few look out points, port a potties along the trail, very rich in history, part of the trail is right by the river and the other part of it goes through the woods. They also have benches along the path that you can sit and rest or sit and take in the breathe taking views. If you love to bird watch then you would enjoy the variety of birds along the trail. It ranges from as small as a finch to as large as an eagle and yes you can see eagles nest throughout the trail. And YES I absolutely love going on this trail it is so breathe taking and peaceful. You can see people walking, biking, canoeing, fishing, swimming, picnicing, and so much more.