Get Outside in Pittsburgh!


Photo taken at Dolly Sods by Dani Jordan

We’re all so restless having to stay at home 24/7 surrounded only by family and confined to our homes. While quarantine has upped the levels of anxiety around the world, a great way to combat that is with a walk outside and a change of scenery. Below are three great places to get outside around Pittsburgh, each with a different level of skill and distance from the city. 

Frick Park

Frick Park allows you to stay in the city while still giving the relaxing feeling that escaping to the woods brings. The largest historic park in the area was donated to the Pittsburgh community in 1919 by the steel tycoon Henry Clay Frick at the request of his daughter Helen Frick. She wished for the children of Pittsburgh to have a place to be outside. The park opened in 1927 and since has grown to 644 acres right in the heart of Pittsburgh. The park houses seventeen miles of hiking trails along with tennis courts, multiple playgrounds, the bowling greens, and fields perfect for socially distant hangouts. The park also allows for cross-country skiing as the temperature drops and we continue to get snow. So, head over to the Three Rivers Outdoor Company to rent your skis and go on an adventure!

Dolly Sods

Photo taken in Frick Park by Dani Jordan

For anyone who is willing to drive out a little farther for a full immersion into the outdoors Dolly Sods is the place for you. Located in West Virginia and part of the Monongahela National Forest the park is about a four hour drive from Pittsburgh. Dolly Sods is a great place for overnight backpacking and camping. With beautiful scenery and camping spots Dolly Sods has been known to be referred to as “a bit of Canada gone astray” according to This is a more difficult trail with over 47 miles of hiking, relatively high elevation, and a rocky terrain in certain pitches. While the hike might require more effort than a stroll through Frick Park the views, feeling of freedom while on the trail, and setting up your campsite at the end of the day make it all worth it. I suggest this hike to anyone looking for a challenge, gorgeous scenery, and a feeling of refresh once you leave the park after a night or two camping along the path. 


If you are still looking for a way to get out of the city but only for a day trip or don’t feel comfortable with such rocky terrain, Ohiopyle is a great option. Only about an hour drive outside of the city the State Park offers a variety of outdoor activities from camping, to hiking, white water rafting, and biking. Covering about 20,500 acres of land, the park is a great day trip escape. The hikes include waterfalls surrounded by a scenery of trees. The park is also home to a section of the Great Allegheny Passage which bikers use every year to ride from Pittsburgh to Washington DC. Even if this is a feat you have no interest in completing the trail is perfect for a day ride.  The park is also home to Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob, two homes built by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Grab some friends and go for a hike today or wait until warmer weather and grab a swimsuit and rent a canoe; either way, Ohiopyle will make you feel much more centered once you return to the city, even if your excursion was only a few hours long. Link to hikes in the area 

We’re living through one of the most stressful times of our lifetime and while many say that you can’t get through anything alone, in some ways that’s what we’re forced to do while trying to keep ourselves, friends, and families safe. There are countless studies that show going into nature even for fifteen minutes every day can relieve stress and anxiety. We have so many amazing resources all around us so take advantage of them! Go get outside!