Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Where do I get on the trail?
A. Where are you or where are you coming from?
B. If from Buffalo, take State Rt 20 to Brocton. As you pass through the Village, you’ll come upon the central school on your left. Take the road that leaves Rt 20 right past the school. After a couple hundred yards, you’ll come to a parking lot and a sign and the beginning of a paved trail. The trail goes off to your left. (The parking lot is maintained by the adjacent landowner whose driveway passes over the railbed.)
OR, you can turn left at the traffic light onto Highland Ave and drive to the trail crossing just before the Village DPW buildings. There is a sign on the road to let you know you are there.
OR, take Highland Ave till it comes to a T, and turn right. Drive about 1 mile and take your first left, onto Thayer Rd. About 1/2 mile up Thayer is the Thayer Rd trailhead, again with a sign on the road,
If from Erie, exit I 86 at the Sherman exit and turn left, towards town. Go into Sherman until the road almost comes to a T. There will be a parking lot on your right and there is a sign announcing the beginning of the trail.comes to a T.
If from the central part of the county, make your way to Mayville and stop at the parking lot beside the old train depot building. The trail passes between the parking lot and the lake. It goes between the Watermark Restaurant and the lake on the left and in front of the Chautauqua Belle paddlewheeler on your right, and it continues on in both directions.
The Prospect Station Trailhead is located at the intersection of Fish, Barnes and Prospect Roads. Please use the map found elsewhere on this website for directions.
Q. Where can I park?
A. There is adequate off road car parking at Thayer Rd, Titus Rd, the Highland Ave trail
crossing in Brocton and Prospect station trailheads, and well as at the old depot in Mayville. There is horse trailer parking at Thayer Rd, Prospect Station and at the depot in Mayville.. There is usually parking for two or three cars at other road crossings, or on the road. However, we actively discourage on road parking on Rt 430 just outside Sherman, at Morris Rd and on Rt 430, both south of Mayville. Drivers cannot get their cars off the road in these locations, so, beware.
Q. What type of trail activities are allowed?
A. Allowable trail uses include: hiking, bicycling, running, treasure hunting, horseback riding, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing. 4wheelers and motorcycles are NOT allowed on the trail.
Q. Is camping along the trail permitted?
A. There are no campsites along the trail, and since most of the trail runs through vegetated areas, open fires are not permitted, due to the danger of runaway fire.
Q. What is the trail surface composed of?
A. The trail surface is of grass and dirt. For this reason, we recommend bicyclists use mountain or hybrid bicycles on the trail.
Q. Are there any dangers on the trail?
A. The trail is on an old abandoned railroad. The trail is relatively flat with widesweeping turns, which means there aren’t any sharp turns or sharply angled ups or downs. So, the trail itself is pretty much free of danger. Still, use caution. However, there are many animals in the woods adjacent to the trail. We have seen bears in the area. But, they are black bears and are pretty shy, unless they are cornered. There are woodchucks and muskrats near the trail which means they may have dug burrows into the trail. When the burrows collapse, there may be a hole in the trail surface until we can get it filled. So please use the trail with caution.
Other trail users might be a danger, if they are not looking out for what they are doing. Please be aware of your surroundings and the presence of other trail users and take appropriate avoidance actions. Again, use caution and enjoy the trail and the nature that surrounds it.