In 1807, the Pennsylvania legislature commissioned a road across the wilderness of northern Pennsylvania to open up east-west travel. Nine years later, laborers completed the "road," though sections remained rough packhorse trail — like here in Potter County, home to just 29 residents in 1810. Often impassable with deep mud and heavy snows, and unpaved until the late 1920s, this route still served as an artery for community commerce and westward migration, and connected the county seats of all of Pennsylvania's Northern Tier counties.
In all but a few stretches, the present-day Route 6 Heritage Corridor follows this original east-west road. From Warren to Mansfield, Route 6 traverses the northern Pennsylvania Wilds through historic communities and a spectacular landscape of deep forests, rushing streams, and scenic vistas.
Impressions on the LandStories of inventiveness and visionary enterprise illuminate every town along Route 6. Historical society museums relate the region's past in Warren, Smethport, Coudersport, and Wellsboro. Stroll through historic districts along the way, from Wellsboro to Warren.
Emblematic of human determination to inhabit and earn a living from this rugged land, Kinzua Bridge, just north of Route 6 at Mount Jewett, stretched 2,053 feet across the Kinzua Valley, 301
feet above the creek. Partly destroyed in 2003 when a tornado tore down many of its support towers, the viaduct remains an engineering wonder.
Near Warren, take a short detour from Route 6 to the Allegheny Reservoir for breath-taking vistas and trophy fishing. Built on the Allegheny River in 1964 to control flooding, Kinzua Dam creates the 12,000-acre Allegheny Reservoir, where visitors swim, boat, camp, hike and fish. Visit Jakes Rocks and Rimrock Overlooks for spectacular vistas of the Allegheny Reservoir.
· Wellsboro's charming downtown is lit with historic gas lamps.
· This first Kinzua Bridge was built in 1882, and was replaced in 1900 to accommodate heavier trains.