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From the Rachel Carson web site. -- From 1908 to 1931, the Harmony interurban trolley line ran between Pittsburgh, Evans City, Butler and New Castle. Along a wooded valley that parallels today's Route 19, the single-track rail bed followed the only level right of way available through the North Hills' otherwise steep terrain. Today, more than 70 years after service was abandoned, its tracks are gone. Much of its old alignment has given way to pavement, housing developments, and other forms of progress.
Between Ingomar and Warrendale, however, a scenic stretch of the old Harmony right of way remains largely intact. As with many rails-to-trails projects throughout the country, its wide, flat corridor is ideal for a trail. This 4.3-mile section is where the Conservancy is initially focusing its resources.
Harmony Work Day report
Marian Crossmanlast modified Jan 16, 2012 04:00 PM
Saturday, November 19, 2011
Fourteen adults and 10 youngsters volunteered their time to help address some drainage issues on the Harmony Trail. It was a satisfying group project. The erosion problem, caused by water diversion upstream, is corrected. Now it all flows properly into pipes established when the contractor did the fine surface in the summer. This work was in Pine Twp, on the northern half of the one-mile route. Further erosion work is needed to the south in McCandless.
RCTC president Todd Chamber's neighbors brought their pick-up to transport stone and gravel from the supply at the Route 910 end. Everyone had a hand in the loading, unloading, or ditching. It was good to see the neighbors who use the trail most, and know they are glad to participate.
Mark Eyerman, who has mostly done work on sections of the Rachel Carson Trail, was especially pleased to see the kids and their moms there. One volunteer teaches phys. ed in Hampton. She brought her two younger daughters, plus four of their friends. They all took part in loading the truck with gravel for the repairs. They also had a great time when we showed them the stream crossing over into the Brooktree office park, where tracts are deeded for the trail connection up to their sidewalks. This Harmony/Brooktree route is used for the Annual Winter Hike that Mark leads the first Sunday in February.
It's good people had their chance to see a way to cross the brook. Ones who have ‘played in the brook' are likely to want to be there again. It is just .6 mile from there up and over Route 19 to reach the western edge of North Park. Then a half-mile of wide trail leads up to the soccer fields. Beyond them, across McKinney Road, a mile of scout-built trails join the Braille Trail and Latodami on Brown Road.
The Winter Hike goes on from there via the North Ridge trail to the Beaver Shelter, north of the dam on Babcock Blvd. The outing totals about 6 miles.
These connections with North Park give the Harmony Trail even more value, especially for neighbors who live west of Route 19.
<<narration in order of mileposts, except GAP>>
<<narration – refer to the trail rather than the trail user. >>That is "the trail goes" rather than "you go". That way we're not giving advice. Bummer that lawyers take away active voice.>>
<<style questions : do we say 6th or 6th (the former, I think)>>
<<Style rules: Routes: I79, US119, PA51, PA978, SR3027, T217. Capitalize Bridge, Road, etc only as part of proper name>>
<<Vocabulary for surface: paved, packed crushed stone, crush cinders, >>some segments on road, on road, on road shoulder, dirt, gravel, coarse gravel, small gravel, original ballast, packed ballast, heavy ballast, tar-and-chip double-track, single-track, undeveloped (and combinations); possibly add parallel treadway for horses/buggies/xxx
Various qualifiers: mostly, some >>.
<<Vocabulary for busy-ness: little-used, uncrowded, uncrowded to busy, busy, busy to crowded, crowded; possibly modified by usually or sometimes; if on road or shoulder, say auto traffic>>.
<<Vocabulary for setting: wooded, rural, suburban, residential, urban, industrial, park setting; also xxx to yyy, or mixed xxx and yyyy>>.
<<Vocabulary for sun: (mostly) sunny, (mostly) shady, mixed sun and shade>>.
<<Vocabulary for profile: flat, mostly flat, flat with gentle grade, >>flat to rolling, gently rolling, some hills, hilly, rugged; options for % of grade, exceptions; also, find "lev