History of Ernst TrailFor Ernst Bike Trail and beyond, use our Meadville trip itinerary planning app to get the most from your Meadville vacation.
The Meadville-Linesville Railroad was built from 1880-1892 by a group of Meadville entrepreneurs to gain access to the Pennsylvania Railroad at Linesville. Despite the involvement of some of Meadville’s best-known citizens, the railroad did not flourish.
In 1891, the Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad Co. leased the right-of-way and for a time it’s most profitable use was as a passenger line, transporting visitors to Exposition Park (renamed Conneaut Lake Park in 1920). With the rise of the automobile, passenger service declined, and in 1934, rail service to the park was discontinued. The Bessemer abandoned the line in 1976. In 1996, Calvin Ernst, the right-of-way’s owner, donated the property to French Creek Recreational Trails and the Ernst Bike Trail was born.
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Ernst Bike Trail Reviews
Paved, flat, wooded. Much of it along French Creek. Well maintained, safe environment. Many walkers as well as bicycle riders. more »
We started at the Bean's parking area and rode as far as the Mercer Pike parking area. It was nice because we rode mostly in the shade and were able to stop for a rest if we wanted to. more »
Very nice trail. Mostly wooded. No steep inclines. Just be mindful, about 3 miles in from the trail head by home depot, you have to cross a couple roads. The trail is 5 miles long. Very easy biking. more »
A five Mile trail relatively level for walking and biking. Nice surface but not much to see.
We like riding here for several reasons. It's close by, it's not usually overly crowded, and it's relatively flat. We like to start at the Meadville/Home Depot trailhead, as it's a gentle climb to the other end, making the return trip easy. There are a few places where the moss is quite solid on the trail, so beware of slippery areas, but in general the pavement is in very good condition. There are Porta John's at the Meadville and halfway points, and there are many shelters and benches scattered along the trail. Overall, a nice ride, if a bit too straight. But no complaints from me, I'm glad it's here.
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