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Featured National Recreation Trail

Heritage Rail Trail County Park, Pennsylvania

The 19-mile multi-use designated National Recreation Trail runs through York County to the Maryland border.

From York County Department of Parks and Recreation

photo of rail car ride

Historic interpretition on the Heritage Rail National Recreation Trail

Heritage Rail Trail County Park, sharing the corridor of the former Northern Central Railway chartered in 1828, provides a link for visitors to some of York City’s oldest buildings and the creek where America’s first iron steamboat chugged.

The trail travels south 19 miles passing through eleven municipalities including the towns of Seven Valleys, Glen Rock, Railroad and New Freedom and adjoins directly with the Maryland Northern Central Railroad Trail (20 mile non-motorized rail trail). This trail, located in the center of York County, is the central spine of a planned greenway trail system to interconnect communities.

The trail is constructed adjacent to the railroad tracks (tracks remain in place and are usable) with a surface of crushed compacted stone. The cost to construct the trail totaled 3.7 million dollars. Funding partners included: federal, state, county and municipal dollars, individual and corporate donations as well as utility fees collected for use of the corridor. In 2006, visitation to the trail totaled 310,295.

Photo of senior citizens outing

Senior citizens' outing on the Heritage Rail Trail


Trail amenities include twelve interpretive signs that explore natural and historic features such as:

• Hanover Junction Railroad Station - A rail stop with a connection to Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War.

• Howard Tunnel, 1838 – A 250 foot long tunnel named for a Revolutionary War soldier from Baltimore

• New Freedom Railroad Station , 1860 - Served as a passenger and freight station until 1971

• Mason Dixon Line – The old line of freedom

• Agricultural – Numerous preservation lands adjoin the trail

For more information:

York County Department of Parks and Recreation
400 Mundis Race Road, York, PA 17406
(717) 840-7440
www. yorkcountyparks.org

Also see York County Rail Trail Authority: http://www.yorkcountytrails.org/

The National Recreation Trails Program
American Trails, P.O. Box 491797, Redding, CA 96049-1797 (530) 547-2060 Fax: (530) 547-2035 nrt@americantrails.org www.AmericanTrails.org

Photo of boardwalk in swamp
On the Tahoe Rim National Recreation Trail

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