When you think of Ohiopyle State Park the two big waterfalls that come to mind are the main Ohiopyle Falls and Cucumber Falls, but if you want to go off the beaten path a little bit and take a hike down Jonathan Run you’ll find some pretty impressive waterfalls and you’ll likely not have the crowds you find at the other popular waterfalls in the park.
Getting to the Jonathan Run Trail
The Jonathan Run trail is actually not located in the main area of Ohiopyle State park, but in a more remote area along Holland Hill Road. There is a small parking lot where you’ll find the Jonathan Run trailhead. The GPS coordinates for this parking lot are 39.891847, -79.507867.
From the trailhead you follow the path back into the woods. When we visited the trail was easy to follow, but we’ve heard it can get muddy after it rains so be sure to wear proper shoes. The trail follows Jonathan Run very closely, so you’ll see the stream throughout your hike. The Jonathan Run trail is around a 1.83 mile hike, so a 3.66 mile loop so be prepared for that. We did not make it all the way to the bottom though. At about a mile into the hike you’ll come to a large bridge.
Almost right after the first bridge you’ll come to an intersection where you can take the Sugar Run Trail, we decided to take this trail to see a side waterfall. While on the Sugar Run Trail you’ll come to a small footbridge. Once you cross the bridge go about 10-15 feet and you’ll be able to make out a small trail on your right. Follow that down to see the side waterfall, which is Fechter Run Falls. Sadly when we were there these falls were almost dry.
You can follow Fechter Run down and it will actually intersect with Johnathan Run. This will put you about 15-20 feet downstream from Upper Jonathan Run falls. Following the stream back up you’ll come to Upper Jonathan Run falls, which is a grouping of three main falls. You have the large falls at the bottom with a very large pool below, the beautiful cascades above, and then another large fall above them. Since water levels were so low we were able to fully explore the falls basically climbing up them.
Since we did not do our research on this place we made our way back to the trail and followed it back up to see what we missed. Unfortunately we ended up missing the Lower Jonathan Run falls as well as the Sugar Run falls. All the means is that we’ll have to go back at some point! While it was a little cold out during our trip to Jonathan run the falling leaves and scenery made it all worth it!
Things to know about the Jonathan Run Trail
– It is more remote than most other waterfalls in Ohiopyle State Park
– Be sure to not miss the lower Jonathan Run falls and Sugar Run Falls like we did!
– The area is open to hunters during hunting season so be sure to wear bright clothing if visiting during hunting season.
– The trail closes at sunset