The Point and the rivers in Pittsburgh really are beautiful. That is what makes us LOVE Point State Park even though parking can be a pain sometimes. The park in terms of trails is not very large, so this one might seem a little confusing with all the turns, but I can assure you it’s really not hard. Let me break it down for you:
During this run, you will make two loops around Point State Park. The first loop is around the outer edge along the river. Then, the second loop is through the middle of the park. For the second loop, you are going to take the trail that you passed at the beginning. It will be on the right before you get to the steps leading down to the river (after you pass the museum). The two trails (outer and inner) run parallel more or less.
After you complete the second loop (the inner loop), you are going to follow the ramp up to the bridge. The ramp is located to the right when you come out of the tunnel with the reflection pools at the start. It’s not a large park, so even if you miss a turn, another little path should lead you to pretty much the same area.
Then you cross the Fort Duquesne Bridge, run along the Allegheny River past PNC Park, walk up the steps to PNC Park at the Clemente Bridge and cross the Clemente Bridge. At the end of the Clemente Bridge, you take the steps back down to the river and follow the trail up the other side back to Point State Park. If you miss your turn back into the park, you’ll just end up at the fountain again, which is actually a nice place to stop and rest!
Here is a (kind of lengthy) video of the twists and turns! Below that is the map. Just like the other parks, if you have GPS on your phone, you can pull it up to see where you are on the trail! We took a screen shot of Google Maps and drew on the trails.
Distance: ~3.1 miles from the entrance of the park
Estimated time: 35 mins (jog)/ 60-75 mins (walk)
Parking: Street parking is free on Sundays. You can park along the Boulevard of the Allies or on Liberty across from the park. Saturday and Sunday, parking is $5 in city garages (not all garages are Pittsburgh Parking Authority garages, though, so be careful). Weekdays, you can park for free along East Carson in the South Side, cross the Smithfield Street Bridge, and walk over to the Point. You can also take the Trolley in from the North Shore for free (I think still, right?), just get off at Gateway Center. You can also take any other T in and get off at Gateway Center. Parking on the North Shore and walking in is another option.
Below I’ve highlighted where there is some free street parking on Sundays and holidays.
Here is a map leading to the entrance of Point State Park:
Bathrooms: There are bathrooms near the fountain.
Water: You will find water fountains seasonally by the the bathrooms near the fountain, and the Cafe at the Point sells beverages and snacks.
Special Notes: There are steps in this trail. At the end of the Fort Duquesne Bridge, there is a ramp for bicycles. I am not sure if there are ramps on/off the other one. Kayaks are available for rent by PNC Park along the river, and you will find lots of benches in Point State Park.
This trail is a fun little city excursion. Be sure to check to see if there are any events going on at the Point, too! And, it is a must to stick your feet in the fountain when no one is looking. 🙂
Have a GREAT run!
Amy + Dominique