The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

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June 6, 2014

National parks hosting variety of hiking opportunities

— The American Hiking Society and the National Park Service will celebrate National Trails Day today by encouraging visitors to spend a day hiking in national parks.  

The five western Pennsylvania national parks have more than 31 miles of maintained hiking trails that provide a variety of opportunities for exercise, bird watching, wildlife viewing and learning about the ecosystems of western Pennsylvania.

This summer, visitors also can attend daily programs presented by park rangers and volunteers.

• “The Story of Flight 93” will be presented by park rangers at 1 p.m. each day at the Memorial Plaza at Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville.

This half-hour program provides a general introduction to the events, actions and people related to the story of Flight 93 and the national memorial.

Information: www.nps.gov/flni.

• “The Path of the Flood Hike” will be offered beginning today at Johns-town Flood National Memorial near St. Michael.

Reservations are required and space is limited.

Ranger-guided hikes and tours will be offered throughout the summer, and there is a half-mile nature trail near the ruins of the dam.

Information: 495-4643 or www.nps.gov/jofl.

• Several hikes will be available through the park rangers at Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site near Gallitzin.

• A hike of the Hollidaysburg Canal Basin will be held June 22.

The two-mile hike of the historic district of Hollidaysburg will focus on the Hollidaysburg connection to the Mainline Canal and the relationship between the canal and the Allegheny Portage Railroad.

• A five-mile hike of Staple Bend Tunnel will be held June 29.

The park ranger will explain the history of the Staple Bend Tunnel, which was the first railroad tunnel in America.

Information: 886-6150 or www.nps.gov/alpo.

• “The Seneca and the French and Indian War,” a temporary exhibit on loan from the Seneca Nation, will be on display in the visitor center at Fort Necessity National Battlefield in Farmington, Fayette County.

Visitors also can take part in a self-guided tour of Braddock’s Road Trace.

Information: 724-329-5805 or www.nps.gov/fone.

• With a national recreation trail designation, Friendship Hill National Historic Site in Point Marion, Fayette County, has more than ten miles of hiking trails.

Information: 724-725-9190 or www.nps/gov/frhi.

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