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River Trail

Easy
 3.8 (5)

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


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Map Key

3.1

Miles

5.0

KM

Point to Point

121' 37 m

High

68' 21 m

Low

142' 43 m

Up

116' 35 m

Down

2%

Avg Grade (1°)

6%

Max Grade (3°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding

7am - Dark

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 Trail 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.

Contacts

Shared By:

Jeff Menaker

Trail Ratings

  3.8 from 5 votes

#13441

Overall
  3.8 from 5 votes
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Trail Rankings

#290

in Pennsylvania

#13,441

Overall
23 Views Last Month
1,058 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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Check-Ins

Aug 19, 2020
Jill Siegel
Jan 13, 2019
Ceylan Alkan
Beautiful even in the winter and a pretty easy trail
May 26, 2018
Drew Gajan
Betzwood Park river parking lot, River Trail, Commissary Trail (@ 1.95 miles), River Trail back with Christina, Andrew, Genevieve, and Grier. 6.1mi
May 29, 2017
Michael Towshar
1.6mi
Nov 6, 2016
Kelsey Anne
Aug 20, 1970
Richard Vogel
Boy Scout Jamboree