If you’re looking for a hike with great views of Pittsburgh, Emerald View is the perfect city park for an urban hike. Keep reading for tips on visiting this amazing city park!
Emerald View Park is a gem of a park perched on slopes overlooking the confluence of the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio rivers. This Pittsburgh city park provides visitors with amazing views of the Point and downtown Pittsburgh.
As always, follow the principles of leave no trace when you're exploring the wonderful trails of Pennsylvania! Pack out all trash, stay on trail, and leave it better than you found it. For more information, check out the seven principles of Leave No Trace.
History of Emerald View Park
Before we lace up our hiking boots, learn more about the history of Emerald View!
Emerald View Park loops around the neighborhoods of Mount Washington, Allentown, and Duquesne Heights. The area became a park in 2007 and was born out of a grassroots effort to protect Mount Washington’s hillside, which had previously been mined. Before these extensive restoration and conservation efforts by local organizations, the land was used for illegal dumping.
If you’re a land ownership nerd (like me!), what’s fun about Emerald View is that the Allegheny Land Trust holds an easement on the park to ensure its protection of greenspace, but the City of Pittsburgh owns the park. For more information on the history, biodiversity, and plans for Emerald View, check out the Allegheny Land Trust website.
Looking for more hikes with amazing views? Check my post on Best Hikes with Views Near Pittsburgh!
Hiking In Emerald View Park
Emerald View Park offers an 11 mile network of hiking trails that reward visitors with great views of the three rivers, bridges, and downtown. The park is 257 acres large. In my opinion, it has a surprising nature feel to it, despite being in the middle of a city.
Since work is always being done on the parks, these trails are subject to change. Please check with local rangers and on trail reviews for the most updated information. The ultimate plan for Emerald View will include one main nine-mile loop and almost eleven miles of connector trails. Not bad for a park right in the middle of a city!
Note: Because of the sloping nature of Emerald View park, trails can often be muddy or icy depending on the time of year (or because it’s Pittsburgh, all year…) Check conditions and wear proper shoes and gear.
Emerald View Trail
This 4.9 mile trail is a great way to see all that the park has to offer! It’s a bit more challenging, with some steep and rocky sections, but worth it for the views! Check out the AllTrails map here.
While not a traditional hiking trail, this road along the park’s edge offers breathtaking views of the city’s skyline, day or night.
Emerald View and Grandview Parks Loop
This 4.7 mile trail creates a loop around both Emerald View and Grandview Parks. Since the greenspace isn’t continuous, this will take you through both the single track trails of Emerald View and a neighborhood stroll of the surrounding neighborhoods. It’s a good way to get the best of both worlds! Check out the AllTrails map here.
This 1.7 mile trail is a nice trail that only takes under an hour to finish. While this trail is partially closed due to a landslide, the loop can be finished on the road. Make sure you’re comfortable navigating if you choose this one while it’s closed! Check out the AllTrails map here.
Emerald View Park is one of my favorite places to hike when I don’t have a ton of time to get out of the city. While it has much more of an urban feel than Frick or Schenley, it’s an amazing place to drink in that city!
FAQs about Emerald View Park
Where is Emerald View Park and how do I get there?
Emerald View Park is located on the slopes of Mount Washington in Pittsburgh, PA. The park is easily accessible by car, public transportation, or even on foot from various points in Pittsburgh. The 40-Mt Washington and 43-Bailey buses serve Emerald View Park. Specific entrances and directions can be found on the park’s website or maps. For a map of the park with park entrance addresses, check out the Pittsburgh Parks website! (However, I recommend putting in the trailhead address from AllTrails if you’re planning on following a specific trail.)
When is Emerald View Park open?
The park is open to the public every day of the year from 6:00 AM until 11:00 PM, unless otherwise posted.
Are there entrance fees to access Emerald View Park?
No, like all Pittsburgh city parks, Emerald View is open to the public free of charge!
Are dogs allowed in Emerald View Park?
Yes, dogs are welcome, but should be leashed and cleaned up after!
How can I get involved in volunteering or supporting the park’s conservation efforts?
What wildlife can I see at Emerald View Park?
According to the Allegheny Land Trust website, the park is located within a Peregrine Falcon Biological Diversity Area! I have also seen a lot of deer when hiking in the park.
Is Emerald View on your list of best hikes near Pittsburgh? Let me know in the comments!