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Trails at Jakes Rocks Selected as Pennsylvania’s 2024 Trail of the Year

by Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR)

Feb 04, 2024

On Thursday, Feb. 1, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn announced the Trails at Jakes Rocks (TAJR) has been named Pennsylvania’s 2024 Trail of the Year.

“This amazing trail system is extremely deserving of this tremendous honor, and I am excited to announce the Trails at Jakes Rocks have been selected as Pennsylvania’s top trail for 2024,” Dunn said. “People travel from near and far to hike, bike, and run these trails, which is a testament to the worthiness of this trail system. We at DCNR are hopeful that this honor helps connect even more people to the recreation opportunities around the trails in Warren County and in the Allegheny National Forest.”

TAJR is a 35-mile natural surface trail system located in the Allegheny National Forest in Warren County. The trails are used primarily for mountain biking, but other types of recreation, such as hiking, trail running, and cross-country skiing, are also permitted.

TAJR was established to address a notable gap in Warren County’s recreational landscape: high-quality mountain bike trails. TAJR’s unique design as a stacked-loop system significantly reduces the typical gaps found in point-to-point trail systems.

TAJR has not only created a fantastic trail system but also serves as an economic driver. A recent economic impact analysis found that the TAJR draws over 25,000 users annually and generates an estimated $9M in annual tourism spending. TAJR is a prime example of a modern, professionally designed, and meticulously constructed natural surface mountain bike trail system.

“The impact that the Trails at Jakes Rocks has made on Warren County has far surpassed our expectations,” said Jim Decker, President and CEO of the Warren County Chamber of Business and Industry. “Locally, we have long recognized the unique beauty and outdoor recreational opportunities our region offers and celebrate the catalyst that the Trails at Jakes Rocks has provided to allow us to share these attributes to a much larger audience. We are humbled by this recognition and sincerely thank DCNR for their assistance with our efforts to create this asset as well as the conveyance of this prestigious award to the Trails at Jakes Rocks.”

The Pennsylvania Trails Advisory Committee designates the Trail of the Year to help build enthusiasm and support for trails across the state and to raise public awareness about the value of Pennsylvania’s land and water trail network. Pennsylvania continues its tradition of being a leader in trail development by providing its citizens and visitors with more than 12,000 miles of trails.

In an effort to close the gaps in this network and bring trails close to everyone, DCNR has established a goal to have a trail within 10 minutes of all Pennsylvanians. The agency is also focusing on closing priority trail gaps and prioritizing strategic investments in trails across the Commonwealth.

The Pennsylvania Trails Advisory Committee is charged with implementing the recommendations of the Pennsylvania Trails Strategic Plan to develop a statewide land and water trail network to facilitate recreation, transportation, and healthy lifestyles for all. The 20-member DCNR-appointed committee represents both motorized and non-motorized trail users and advises the commonwealth on the use of state and federal trail funding.

Visit the PA Wilds Assets webpage or the TAJR Facebook page for more information about the trail.

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