To the southwest of Philadelphia The route begins on the west bank of the Schuylkill River in southwest Philadelphia and winds through Bartram's Park, North America's oldest botanical garden. It resumes as a paved route on the eastern riverside, passing past an old industrial area—Grays Ferry Crescent—that is now a park. The trail ends at Fairmount Water Works.
The western terminus of the trail is located near 30th Street and Cheltenham Avenue in the University City district. A small parking lot is available for trail users to drop off bags or packages while they walk the trail. The eastern terminus is at Fairmount Water Works, where there is also a small parking lot for trail users to drop off bags or packages.
The trail is open year-round, but facilities such as bathrooms and water are not always present. During rainstorms or high river levels, some sections may be closed to prevent accidents due to changes in road surface conditions.
From Center City, South Philadelphia, and West Philadelphia, the Schuylkill Banks are the finest place to connect to the Schuylkill River Trail. The route now stretches approximately two miles through the heart of Philadelphia along the Schuylkill Banks before connecting to Kelly Drive. Plans call for the trail to continue north beyond Kelly Drive.
The Schuylkill Banks are a paved multi-use path that runs along the east bank of the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. The path is accessible from several points within the city, including from Callowhill Street at the border with Fairmount Park and from Washington Square West at 17th Street. A section between 20th and 21st Streets was completed in 2009 as part of an effort by the Friends of the Schuylkill River to promote environmental education in schools. The rest of the path will be complete by 2014 as part of a project to expand and improve bicycle access to the river.
The Schuylkill River Trail is expected to become a major commuting route into Center City, helping to reduce traffic on nearby roads and providing a safe alternative for people who would otherwise have to use cars to get to work.
There are also plans to extend the trail farther south, past 30th Street toward Florida Avenue in North Philadelphia. This extension would provide more direct access to the University of Pennsylvania and Lincoln Financial Field/Philadelphia Eagles Stadium.
The Schuylkill River Trail (SRT) was just voted America's Best Urban Trail. Those of us who run, cycle, stroll, and hang out on the Schuylkill Banks and Kelly Drive couldn't be more in agreement. Many SRT users believe the path finishes at Falls Bridge or sooner, however this is incorrect. The SRT continues all the way to Philadelphia City Hall! In fact, you can walk or ride all the way from Fairmount Park to City Hall without ever leaving the trail.
Bike lanes have been added to several sections of the trail since it opened in 2008. These provide a safe place for cyclists to ride next to moving vehicles. However, keep in mind that traffic tends to be heavier near downtown Philadelphia, so plan your trip accordingly.
For more information about biking on the SRT, visit their website here. You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
This track, which begins at the intersection of Wiltz Lane and Patterson Drive, is ideal for runners who wish to avoid automobile traffic and intersections. This 5.3-mile portion of the path is located just across from Woldenberg Park.
The trail continues south along the river for another 30 miles, passing through several small towns before reaching its terminus at Davenport, Iowa.
Runner's World magazine named the Mississippi River Trail one of the best running trails in America. The trail is also popular with cyclists and inline skaters. In addition, there are plans to extend the trail as far as St. Paul, Minnesota.
The City of Rockford hopes to extend the trail even further by building an overpass above Main Street that will allow foot traffic and bikes to cross over busy U.S. 12. A public meeting on this subject is being held tonight at 7 p.m. at Our Lady of Lourdes Church (2800 E. Main St.).
The Appalachian Trail, which follows the ridges of Kittatinny Mountain in New Jersey and Blue Mountain in Pennsylvania, crosses the Delaware River at Columbia, New Jersey, at the Delaware Water Gap. The trail continues north through the mountains to Mount Katahdin in Maine.
The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is a national park located in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania that has facilities for camping, hiking, mountain biking, and more. The recreation area was created by Congress in 1968 when it designated land that previously had been used for industrial purposes as part of the National Park Service.
The recreation area offers views of the Delmarva Peninsula, including its beaches and barrier islands. Geologists say some of the oldest rocks in North America can be found in the Delaware Water Gap region. They date back more than 300 million years, to the Carboniferous period.
The Delaware Water Gap also serves as an important link in the water supply system for Philadelphia and New York City. One out of every 10 people in the United States gets their drinking water from this network of reservoirs, pipelines, and treatment plants. The water comes from deep underground sources on either side of the gap and is treated and distributed through canals and tunnels that connect with municipal systems in both states. This form of alternate-day pumping reduces overall consumption during times of drought or other shortages.