AMC is pleased to announce that the PA Highlands Trail Concept Plan: Unami Hills to Hopewell Big Woods has been completed and can be reviewed and downloaded by visiting the Trail Feasibility Study page.
The Trail Concept Plan details a Highlands Trail trunk route that traverses over fifty miles in portions of Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, and Berks Counties, as well as potential spur trails that have been identified as part of the Pennsylvania Highlands Trail Network (PHTN). The plan was developed with the input of many individuals and organizations including the PHTN Steering Committee, township residents, county planners, and non-profit partners, most notably Natural Lands Trust.
The PA Highlands Trail Concept Plan is the third in a series of studies that have produced a vision for the PHTN. The first two studies, “Feasibility Report #1: Riegelsville to Quakertown” and the “Quakertown Region Master Trails Plan” described the PHTN in the easternmost portion of the Pennsylvania Highlands in Bucks, Lehigh and Northampton Counties.
This most recent Trail Concept Plan covers a large portion of the state-designated Schuylkill Highlands Conservation Landscape where the Highlands Trail will connect the Perkiomen Trail, Schuylkill River Trail and Horse-Shoe Trail, as well as three of the largest forested areas in southeastern Pennsylvania: the Unami Hills, Stone Hills, and Hopewell Big Woods.
Looking at the bigger picture, AMC and the PA Highlands Trail Network Steering Committee have identified and mapped a conceptual Highlands Trail route across the 13-county PA Highlands region that traverses 333 miles. Of the currently planned 333-mile PHTN trunk route, approximately 288 miles are co-located on established trails, with approximately 45 miles of trail gaps that need to be closed to complete the PHTN trunk route from the Delaware River to the Maryland border. The most significant trail gaps have been addressed in this Trail Concept Plan, as well as the prior two plans found here.