- 10 Min
- 10 Min
Following along the Great Allegheny Passage Trail you'll see the bright opening of the former railroad bridge as you cross on it through a gateway formed by tree tops and emerge out into the open vista that surrounds you featuring the river far below you on both sides roaring with rapids. As you continue to the center you can see the Youghiogheny River Gorge rounding through the bottom slopes of Laurel Ridge to your right and the Railroad Rapids in the distance adjacent to Ferncliff Peninsula on your left. While keeping an eye out for bike riders as you cross the bridge the scenery will compel you to make multiple stops to enjoy the views. The Youghiogheny River has its own traffic of adventurers kayaking or rafting down the river and the height above makes the people appear little larger than ants. Once on the other side of the bridge a bench sits in a forested area and daring unmarked trails will encourage some to make their way to the river bottom to see the rapids up close. The Great Gorge Trail starts here and will take you to the Cucumber Falls Area on a peaceful hike often strewn with rare flowers and other specimens. Crossing back over the bridge you'll get a repeat of the beautiful scenery with Ferncliff Peninsula in view as your destination and after walking again through the crowns of trees and emerging back on solid land you'll notice a trail bearing to the right that kayakers use to haul their boats back to their car from the river. Following this leads to the forest floor and to an opening in the vegetation allowing you to access large sandstone rocks where you can watch boaters battling Railroad Rapid.