Two Mile Run County Park is located near Franklin, Pennsylvania in Venango County within the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains, just 10 miles west of Oil City, PA and 60 miles south of Great Lake Erie. The area is rich in natural beauty and historical significance.
Two Mile Run County Park is a beautiful year-round recreational destination with over 2,695 acres of forests and fields surrounding 144-acre Lake Justus. It is in the heart of the historic, nationally designated Oil Heritage Region. The 65-ft deep sapphire blue lake, set in the center of Two Mile Run County Park was created by a flood control Dam built on the upper end of Two Mile Run River, a tributary of the Allegheny River.
Swimming, boating and fishing are popular activities on the lake. Crosby beach features a life-guarded swimming area, picnic areas with grills, a beach house with restrooms, shower facilities, a sun deck, food concessions and a first aid station. Boating (electric motors only) and watercraft rentals are also available. A boat launch can be found at the northern end of the lake.
The Two Mile Run County Park’s 30+ mile trail system has been, up until now, Venango County’s best kept secret. The double and singletrack trails traverse varied terrain typical of the Allegheny Mountains plateau region in northwestern Pennsylvania. Hikers, mountain bikers, horseback riders and cross country skiers of all ability levels will find a little bit of everything from gently rolling hills and fields to stream valleys.
The area also teems with wildlife typical of the Northern Allegheny Plateau. Black bear, bobcat, porcupine, mink, coyote, snowshoe hare, northern river otter, beaver, bald eagles, osprey and wild turkey are some of the species that can be found here.
Park facilities also include multi-purpose fields, a family campground with 72 secluded sites and modern facilities, two rental cottages, picnic pavilions, a softball and multi-purpose fields as well as a community use building and the Lockwood Astronomical Observatory.
Every year, the popular Two Mile Run Mountain Bike Race takes place at the park. See MTB Events Calendar.
Two Mile Run County Park Trail Description
We worked with the Two Mile Run Park Trail Committee to produce this trail page. A micro-burst in the summer of 2003 had caused significant damage to the trail system. They were working on trail restoration and wanted to promote mountain biking, the trail system and their annual mountain races. We were glad to help. Today the trails have been reconstructed and the Trail Committee is continually working on maintaining, restoring and adding new trails to the trail network to provide many ways to enjoy Two Mile Run’s beautiful natural habitat.
If you are unfamiliar with the park, you can pick up a trail map from the park office.
Mountain bikes are allowed on almost all the trails at Two Mile Run County Park, except the XC Ski Course and which is groomed for trail runners in the warmer months. Singletrack trails, dirt doubletrack and park roads traverse and circumnavigate the park over a wide range of terrain and habitat offering beginners to experienced mountain bikers and hikers diverse experiences and challenges.
The 30+ mile trail network, consisting of over 20 miles of singletrack trails, includes three marked loops: an 11-mile, designated mountain biking loop, about 10-13 miles of cross country ski trails and a 13.3-mile equestrian outer perimeter trail that circumnavigates Justus Lake.
Connectors trails in the network make any number loop rides possible as well longer ride options.
Two Mile Run Designated Mountain Bike Trail Loop: 11 miles - Yellow-blaze
Mostly hard-packed, singletrack and some doubletrack trails travel over rolling hillside up a few hundred vertical feet above Justus Lake. The views of the lake and surrounding countryside below are magnificent. There are fun and fast downhills, challenging climbs, switchbacks, some rocky sections, log overs and stream crossings.
Lockwood Astronomical Observatory
The Lockwood Observatory features a 14 inch Meade SCT, one of the largest telescope available for public use in Northwestern Pennsylvania. A specially designed rotating roof rolls open 10 feet to allow astronomical viewing by the telecscope. Hours of Operation: Clear Friday evenings from 7:45 - 10 PM.
Venango County has a rich, colorful history which can still be seen and experienced today in the area’s Colonial and Victorian architecture and plaques marking sites of forts that existed during the French and Indian War. Iron blast furnaces, remnants of the once booming petroleum industry including oil derricks and old railroad grades have since been converted to long distance, multi-use recreational trails.
With the drilling of the first successful commercial oil well near Titusville, Pennsylvania in 1859, the region and the world was changed forever. This single well soon exceeded the entire cumulative oil output of Europe since the 1650s. Oil derricks and oil boom towns including Oil City, Titusville, Petroleum Center, Pithole, and Rynd Farm sprang up seemingly overnight.
On December 7, 2004, Pennsylvania's Oil Region, which includes Franklin, PA was declared an Oil Region National Heritage Area.
Franklin Historic District
Franklin, listed on the National Register of Historic Place in 1984, is well-known for having one of the most intact Victorian Historic Business Districts in Pennsylvania. The tree-lined streets feature 20 different styles of architecture and more than 200 historically significant buildings.
Drake Well Museum
Drake Well Museum, a National Historic Landmark, is the site where, in 1859, the world's first commercial oil well was drilled. The Drake Well, named after "Colonel" Edwin Drake, is the centerpiece of the Museum.
See operating oil equipment and learn all about the history of Franklin County's "oil boom" of the 19th century.
As an added incentive, Oil Creek State Park's 9.5 mile paved bike trail and hiking trails begin at the museum.
Location: 202 Museum Lane, Titusville PA
The Oil Creek and Titusville Railroad Excursion Train
3-hour round trip train ride will take you on a journey through Pennsylvania Oil country's timeline.
Location: Perry Street Station, 409 S Perry St, Titusville, PA
In 1825, rich deposits of iron ore were discovered in Venadago County. Many of them, including Rockland Furnace, below Freedom Falls, Webster Furnace, located on Bear Run in Rockland Township, and the Anderson and Oil Creek Furnaces still stand today.
Rockland Furnace, listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1991, is one of the best preserved iron furnaces. If you are adventurous and enjoy discovering historic treasures off the beaten path, this one's for you. It is located just below Freedom Falls along Shulls Run.
Aproximate GPS Coordinates: +41.23393, -79.74877
From I-80: Take exit 29 and head north on Rt 8 for 16.2 miles to Franklin. Turn right on Liberty St. and the 2nd left onto 13th St. After 1/2 mile turn, right onto Rt 417N (Rocky Grove Ave). Travel 6.3 miles to Baker Rd and turn right. At 1.1 mile bear left onto Cherrytree Rd. Drive .4 mile to the park.
From I-79: Take exit 147 at Meadville. Head south 25.9 miles on Rt 322 to Rt 417N (Rocky Grove Ave). Turn left, go north on Rt 417and follow above directions.
Two Mile Run County Park
Phone: (814) 676-6116