Published by Jeremy. Last Updated on June 15, 2021.
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It took us three tries to properly hike Boyce Mayview Park.
The first time we went, the access point we selected was overgrown and we had many ticks jump on us (and our dog) in just a few feet. We decided to explore the more accessible northern end of the park during this visit.
The second time, the road going to the parking area I had intended to visit was closed and the detour to get there was sufficiently long that I gave up (this was on me).
But the third try, I made it, and after exploring this one properly I do have to admit there is a fair amount to see- just be sure to have a map on your phone handy.
What You Can See at Boyce Mayview Park
Boyce Mayview Park is home to a lot of things to see, we have to be honest. The trails visit many meadows, forests, floodplains, wetlands, house remains, butterfly paths, Chartiers creek, a modest waterfall (a solid rain helps this one not be just a trickle like when I visited), and so much more.
In fact, when you look at the map it is one of those places that makes hikers like us giddy because you could truly plan to spend a whole day there seeing it all.
But as mentioned at the start of this article, it was the accessibility of the park that threw us off, and even when visiting properly I do have to admit that there are a number of hiking concerns you need to be aware of- especially if you want to see everything this one has to offer.
Hiking at Boyce Mayview Park
The most important thing you need to do when visiting Boyce Mayview Park is to decide which parking area you're going to start at. As this park is quite large (nearly 500 acres) and wraps around a bend at Chartiers Creek (giving it distinct northern and southern zones), where you park will set you up for your day of exploring.
For those who want to explore the more rugged southern section of the park, where the wetlands, waterfall, and vistas are, parking at the Bird Meadows Drive trailhead on the southwest side of the park is highly recommended as this will give you easy access to the paths.
These trails run the spectrum in terms of what you'll experience hiking-wise. Some are decently steep, some are narrow, while some of the main paths are wide and potentially even paved.
Likewise, although the interconnecting trails are pretty well marked at their connecting points, it is worth noting that loops of any sufficient size will require you hiking on five, six, seven, or more trails to achieve a solid outing. As such, having a map on hand is recommended to ensure you don't go down the wrong path far, far away from your intended destination (Google Maps has most, but not all of the trails as of our last visit).
For those who want a bit easier time out, you may want to stick to the northern side of the park near where the baseball fields are. The reason for this is that many of the perimeter trails are paved, and as you walk deeper into the park the paths are wider and much friendlier to navigate (although worth noting we saw a no dogs allowed sign on the Meadow Edges trail, so if you bring your pup to this section you may find fewer options).
Overall, Boyce Mayview Park is a solid outing for those who want to get out and enjoy nature in the South Hills. One of the best things about this park is that there are areas accessible to those of all skill levels, but we do have to admit that if you want to take full advantage of this one you need to be rather pro-active in deciding which parking area to begin at.
That will set you up with the best chance of success in your exploring!
Boyce Mayview Park is located at 1551 Mayview Road in Upper Saint Clair, PA. Note that we recommend parking at the Bird Meadows Drive trailhead on the south end of the park if you want to truly explore this one.