J. Manley Robbins Trail is a short trail with a long history. Quite possibly it is the oldest documented rail-trail in the country. The trail leads through a beautiful deciduous forest high above the Mahoning Creek. The original trail is barely one mile long, but combined with an old Reading Railroad line, the trail makes a 3.8-mile loop. This combined network is commonly known as the Hess Loop Trail. The trail is particularly nice for jogging and dogs are welcome. A map of the trail can be found on Trail Link.

For more insights into the unique history of the trail as the first rail trail in the United States, check out the video below.

Parking and Trail Access

To find the trail, which the locals refer to as “the bike path,” travel north on RT 54 from downtown Danville, make the very first left onto Continental (old maps show Rt 54 as Continental but it is now one block west of RT 54. Follow Continental back through a housing development (one more left turn). You can park at the end of the housing development and ride from here into the Hess Recreational Complex or drive on into the complex. The Old Reading RR trail runs parallel to the road.


Map provided by Montour Area Recreation Commission

More Land Trails in Montour County

Geisinger Stewardship Forest & Hopewell Park

Hiking, Mountain Biking, Walking

8-11 miles


North Branch Canal Trail

Cross-Country Skiing, Dog Walking, Mountain Biking, Walking

3.5 miles (6.2 miles when complete)


Danville Riverfront Trail

Biking, Dog Walking, Running, Walking

1 mile