Improvements To Mingo Park Bicycle – Walking Trail

Washington County is making substantial improvements to Mingo Creek Park with the installation of a new trail alongside the main road in the park. Most of the trail is now paved with 4 new bridges to be installed as soon as weather permits.

Bicycling on the main park road has been unsafe for years with the lack of berms, sharp corners, limited sight distances (see photo 1) and no speed limit enforcement. It was safer to ride the huge berms along route 88. Cost of the improvements will amount to $546,000.

It’s money well spent considering that hundreds of people will use the trail all year-round. Compare that to the cost of the Aquatorium renovation which will cost $1,200,000 for a structure which is only used about three times a year when it isn’t under water or covered in mud.

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14 thoughts on “Improvements To Mingo Park Bicycle – Walking Trail

  1. RJ January 5, 2012 / 7:25 pm

    Here’s the problem with the trail; first, they’ve run the thing through the off-leash dog area. So now we have to contend with bikes, joggers and roller bladers flying past our dogs. Did any of the idiots in charge of this park ever notice that dogs like to chase shit?
    It gets worse; they’ve connected the off-leash site to the PLAYGROUND!!! There was a woman pushing a stroller past my dog last week. It’s January, what the hell do they think is going to happen in June when the stupid people drag their loud screaming kids into the dog area?!

    And this is just the beginning of the problems that dog owners will now face in this park. We make up 80% of the people who use this facility 12 months out of the year and they give us garbage areas to take our dogs and then screw that up. This whole state sucks.

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  2. mallspyder January 6, 2012 / 12:49 pm

    This is great news! Mingo is one of my favorite parks. Western PA has the best public parks. They are real parks as opposed to the faux parks found in many cities that are just soccer fields.

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  3. jesspgh January 13, 2012 / 11:42 am

    I adore Mingo Park and am glad to see that improvements are being made despite the continued budget cuts and freezes at the state government level. The parks of SWPA are such a treasure! We are fortunate to benefit from the rich landscape and geography unique to the area.

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  4. DanT January 13, 2012 / 10:02 pm

    Yeah, it’s a great park. I’d be interested to do a little research on the history of the area. Lots of activity in that area even as far back as the 1770’s.

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  5. Deb Cheplic February 15, 2012 / 3:38 pm

    Re Mingo Park, Pa: Yes, conditions have gone downhill in a major way in our beloved off leash area. I detached a retina in August, had surgery, and could not go back until October. I was horrified to see the trail cutting across the bottom of the entire field in our area. I sent an email to the head of the parks, expressing my concern over clashes with hikers and bikers because our dogs are off leash. So many people are hostile toward us, even though are dogs are under control. People without dogs are now hanging out in our area, and tell us we had better have our dogs under control. Mr. Garrison from the parks office told me they are putting a fence up to contain us on the hill. We can no longer even let our dogs loose to go for water in the stream that runs along the now blacktop trail into our area. We were told we cannot let them off leash until we get up on the hill. There are two open fields in our area, with a tree line splitting them. There is one cut out in the trees to pass from one field to the other. It gets used by everyone, the grass is worn off and dangerously muddy. We try to hang on to brush until we get to the grass again. On January 30 I fell in the mud there and broke my leg in two places. Had surgery and will be down until around April. I contacted the park office again, expressing my thoughts on conditions there. So many people have fallen there. He claimed ignorance of the conditions, but promised gravel there and more cut throughs to improve safety. Nothing yet, three weeks later, according to friends. Also, horse people did a lot of work putting in trails there, under supervision of park officials, spend a lot of time keeping trails clear, and deserve to ride them .. Without the horse people, some trails, especially the orange perimeter and blue trails, would not exist. I get the feeling we will be forced out of the off leash area eventually.

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  6. Chris February 15, 2012 / 8:38 pm

    I’ve been assured their next step is to put up the fence division to keep all parties safe from each other in the leash-free zone. We really are the patrons that use the park year round and our dogs have grown to be great friends w/one another too. It would be fabulous to see our trails graveled, drained properly and expanded to include all the ones up the hill, behind the sign, so our faithful friends have someplace to hike and play with each other while their humans don’t endanger themselves in Mingo Mud Park 🙂 It’s the best place for dogs and their humans that I’ve seen anywhere in the country!!! It would be great to have the trails others toiled over to lay and maintain w/park personnel maintained and kept cleared for all the regular users–horses, riders, dogs, hikers and I guess the bikers will be on the pavement now.

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  7. Deb Cheplic February 19, 2012 / 3:35 pm

    Thanks to Mr. Garrison and the staff at Mingo Park for bringing in gravel for the cut thru in the off leash area. Hopefully this will keep other people from breaking legs in the mud there. Two weeks into my down time now ..staples out and hard cat on 2/21. Month of PT after that ..then hopefully back to hiking with th Boys soon ..

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  8. Deb Cheplic February 26, 2012 / 10:59 pm

    I feel things getting ugly in the off leash area … I have been hearing from numerous people about confrontations from people walking that blacktop trail where it passes through the off leash area. Truly liked our park much better before this trail went through. People who grouse about dogs being off leash in the off leash area are probably the same ones who complain about horses being on the horse trails .. Originally put in for horseback riders, maintained a lot by riders, who also spent many hours working with park officials years ago to lay out, clear, and establish the orange perimeter trail and the blue trail. Now that these trails have been deemed multi use trails, some people think the horses need to be gone from them. I understand a fence is going up between the off leash area and the trail .. Is is sad that our dogs cannot even go off leash into the stream as they come out from their runs. Not getting happy feelings about all of this.

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  9. mike April 8, 2012 / 7:16 am

    How about leaving your stupid dogs at home.There are a lot of people who dont like being around dogs.Its strange how people who own dogs thik everyone else likes them too.So take your dumb anaimal some where else to piss and shit you morons.

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  10. Deb Cheplic April 10, 2012 / 11:55 am

    I was glad to see the fence go up between the off leash dog area and the walking trail. They did a nice job on it. Kudos to Mr. Garrison and the park workers.

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  11. Mike S May 20, 2012 / 8:13 am

    Great job on the new path. It sure is nicer riding bikes end to end. Mingo is a great place to go and spend quality time with my family. i also take my dogs to the off leash area. They really enjoy it. Some of these people should stop being so ignorant and enjoy what they have here. A great place for family and pets. Thanks for all the work that has been done. What an improvement.

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  12. Deb Cheplic July 10, 2012 / 3:07 pm

    Came home from the Park today rather amazed that I did not have any Spandex-encased helmeted cyclists in front of me the whole way out of the Park and all the way to Route 88. I get that we are to “share” the road with the cyclists – but I think they take it to the extreme, especially with the new law that says we have to give them four feet of clearance when passing them. When they ride two feet into the road to begin with, there’s no way to pass them during this couple of mile stretch of road. The two that I followed yesterday were a good three feet into the road, traveling about 8-10 MPH most of the time, kept looking back to see if the line of traffic was still behind them, but would not budge. No break until our entire parade got to Route 88, and they veered off into the Park and Ride area – guess that’s where they start their journey. I rode bikes with a friend of mine for several years through the park, around it, and back into it. We never blocked traffic, always moving as far off the road as we could. I rode the highways around our area for years on horseback (and according to PA state law, horses have the right of way on all roads except interstates), and always was mindful of traffic. We rode as far off the road as we could. The only time I put myself into the traffic was when I had any kids who used to ride with me along .. and Maggie and I would ride the line on the edge of the road and put the kids on the inside. I did this intentionally to slow down cars and ensure the safety of the kids. They put that $550,000 beautiful blacktop trail in all the way through the Park, with the idea that they needed to clear the roads for cars because of safety issues. The “road warrior cyclists” feel, I guess, that they’re far above the common folk who ride the trails, and insist on riding the roads. There are usually a handful of people with kids in strollers with an old dog on a leash traveling the road too … I guess I just don’t understand why you would choose to put your kid in danger on the road when there’s a beautiful path they could be enjoying … Phew, OK, now I feel better .. 🙂

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  13. The Watcher August 31, 2012 / 8:25 pm

    And who is responsible when the first inattentive pedestrian is struck by an automobile while crossing the road at no less than 4 intersection? The idiot that designed a paved walking trail that crosses the main road when there are hundreds of acres that can be utilized for a safe pedestrian walking “trail” should be fired! Someone is going to be seriously injured!
    Meanwhile the park office is in danger of collapsing.

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  14. DanT August 31, 2012 / 8:36 pm

    Ok, I’m tired of all the negative B.S. on this post. Comments are now closed.

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Comments are closed.