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River Trail

Easy

Trail

3.1 mile 5.0 kilometer point to point
99% Runnable
Easy

Elevation

Ascent: 142' 43 m
Descent: -116' -35 m
High: 121' 37 m
Low: 68' 21 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 2% (1°)
Max Grade: 6% (3°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Trail shared by Jeff Menaker

This trail is an easy 3 miles of river views and waterfowl in Valley Forge National Historical Park.

Jeff Menaker

Features Birding

7am - Dark

Runner Notes

Popular trail for running and biking. Several footbridges may become slippery/icy, so be careful if running in inclement weather!

Description

This easy 3 mile trail follows the Schuylkill River from the River Trail parking lot off of Pawlings Road. This parking area is next to the Pawlings Rd bridge over the Schuylkill. If you are parked at the Pawlings Road Trailhead to the east and near 422, you are at the wrong spot. While similar in name, this trail is NOT the Schuylkill River Trail - Pawlings to Lock 60.

From the trailhead, follow the crushed gravel path down river 3 miles. Along the way, you'll find several views of the Schuylkill River to your right. You'll pass the site of Sullivan's Bridge, part of the Valley Forge encampment, where George Washington's Army took shelter during the winter of 1777-1778.

At the beginning of the trail, a large earthen mound is to your left. This is the impoundment for the Walnut Hill Desilting Basin, an additional trail is available on top of the berm. In other sections of the trail, multiple wetlands areas are present on your left. In the winter, expect to find ducks and geese. In Spring look for frogs and salamanders.

As you approach the downriver end of the trail, catfish island will be on your right. Look for heron and geese breeding in the spring. The trail ends at Betzwood Access. Parking, boat launch, and restrooms are available here. On your return trip, you may wish to turn onto the Commissary Trail and add a small bypass.

Flora & Fauna

Deer and various varieties of waterfowl frequent the area.

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Trail Ratings

  3.5 from 4 votes

#16778

Overall
  3.5 from 4 votes
5 Star
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Trail Rankings

#402

in Pennsylvania

#16,778

Overall
20 Views Last Month
435 Since Dec 31, 2015
Easy

100%
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Photos

View of the Schuylkill River looking downriver from the River Trail.
Dec 31, 2015 near Audubon, PA
This large berm is part of the Schuylkill River Desilting project 1947-1951.
Dec 31, 2015 near Chester…, PA
View of the Schuylkill River looking upstream from the River Trail.
Dec 31, 2015 near Audubon, PA

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