Backpack the West Rim Trail

Northern Terminus - Search Nearby - Added by Shawn Grenninger

Backpack the western edge of Pine Creek Gorge and take in the many scenic vistas along the way on this 2-3 day hike.

Hiking north to south, the trailhead is just off of Colton Road at a gravel parking lot with bathrooms. The trail is marked with orange blazes and has the largest elevation gain at the beginning and then has relatively moderate elevation change throughout the remainder of the hike.

At 2.6 miles the trail intersects with Barbour Rock Trail and the first of many vistas. The trail will then traverse around Colton Point State Park and away from the canyon rim, but will come back to the gorge at about the 9 mile mark.

Bradley Wales Picnic area is a rough midway point where there are pit toilets and water. The southern trailhead is at Rattlesnake Rocks access 2 miles south of the village of Blackwell. Use Pine Creek Outfittes for shuttle service if needed. Permits are not needed unless camping at the same spot more than one night.

Distance

30.5 Miles RT

Elevation Gain

5648 ft Gain

Type

Point-to-Point

Activities

Camping, Photography, Backpacking, Hiking

Forest
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Nearby Lodging

Hammondsport / Bath KOA

Bath, New York

From $120/night

Hickory Grove Pond

Forksville, Pennsylvania

Watkins Glen / Corning KOA

Watkins Glen, New York

Williamsport South / Nittany Mtn. KOA

New Columbia, Pennsylvania

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Great backpack!

Great trail with fantastic views down the PA Grand Canyon. Views from Barbour Rock and near the Bradley Wales Picnic Area were some of my favorites. Fairly easy hiking as most of the trail is along the rim. Water levels on streams get low during dry periods.

Gorge-ous!

Hiked it south to north (more challenging terrain to easier/more scenic) . A lot of the water sources were dry in mid-October including some that were marked as year round on the topo they sell at PCO so fill up whenever it's available. Beautiful fall colors and views.

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