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Shake off your cabin fever and winter blues in the PA Great Lake’s Region with some outdoor recreation fun!

As the ice and snow melts away, we turn our attention from the ski and tubing slopes to biking and hiking trails.

The Erie to Pittsburgh Trail is a 270-mile trail system currently in development. When finished, it will connect to the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP), creating a 605 mile off-road route between Erie and Washington, D.C. via the GAP and the C&O Canal. It will also connect to the Erie Canal trail via New York Bike Route 517 along Lake Erie.

There are already several miles of completed sections to ride off-road now.

One such portion, the Allegheny River Trail, is 28 paved miles along the Allegheny River from Franklin to Emlenton. This section includes two tunnels: Rockland Tunnel (2,868 ft) and Kennerdell Tunnel (3,350 ft). The Kennerdell Tunnel is one of the longest rail trail tunnels in the United States and among the longest bicycle/pedestrian tunnels in the world.

Springtime hiking, biking, and camping is great at PA Great Lakes Region State Parks including Presque Isle, Pymatuning, Oil Creek, and Goddard State Parks.

Each offer a variety of waterways and trails, perfect for exploring.

Opening day for trout season is like a major holiday in Pennsylvania. This year PA’s statewide Opening Day of Trout Season will be Saturday, April 1. A single, statewide Mentored Youth Trout Day will take place on Saturday, March 25.

Anglers can take advantage of the end of the Erie Steelhead run as mature Washington strain steelhead enter the Erie tributaries starting as early as mid-September and running through April.

Spring Gobbler Season is another favorite time for hunters in PA. Only bearded turkeys are eligible April 29 through May 30.

Melting snow and longer days also means it’s time to return to the links.

The PA Great Lakes Region is home to numerous golf courses offering a variety of challenge levels at affordable prices. Try your luck at Tam O’Shanter, Pine Lakes, Green Meadows, Spring Valley, Cross Creek, Mt. Hope, Whispering Woods, or Lake Shore.

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Crawford County

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Erie County

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Mercer County

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Venango County