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Wissahickon Valley Park

Intermediate/Difficult
 5.0 (4) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

An awesome hike within city—a gem. If you want some serious hiking, take this route.


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Map Key

5.7

Miles

9.2

KM

Loop

238' 73 m

High

104' 32 m

Low

501' 153 m

Up

500' 152 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

24%

Max Grade (14°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · Historical Significance · River/Creek · Swimming · Views

Avoid Valley Green Inn parking. We parked at the Blue Bell parking lot, and have heard that mornings are better to avoid crowds.

Overview

This is a great escape in the city, complete with water crossings, tall bridges, and underpasses.

Need to Know

No porta-potties or restrooms once you are on the trail.

Description

Starting off from the Blue Bell parking lot, you soon get underway beneath the Walnut Lane Bridge—an imposing tall structure only marred by graffiti, but some creative murals. The terrain is a mix of gravel initially, mud and stones. There are a few small uphills. There is opportunity for rock climbing at the Climber's Rock about one third of the way into the route.

The highlight of the route is the visit to the Devil's Pool area which is a small waterfall supposedly 10 feet deep right below an overpass. My friend told me he has seen people jumping off the bridge, nearly 100 feet high, into the pond (although probably not recommended). A tiny waterfall sits over the pond. The pond overlooks a broad body of the Wissahickon River which surely will be water-high during rains—so watch out, crossings won't be fun or easy.

Before you get to the pond, you'll get a chance to view it from above where you hike on a large pipe that is cordoned off for safety reasons. Most of the trail is shaded making for a good hike even on a summer day. You'll also pass through the Fingerspan Bridge, which is a metallic structure getting you across a small rocky gorge. The Livezy House built circa 1700 is a site to pause at after you cross the bridge.

History & Background

The hike passes along the place where the first memorial service was held in America in 1723. Check out historic landmarks still on the site at fow.org/visit-the-park/stru…

Contacts

Shared By:

Ash Aragam

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 4 votes

#853

Overall
  5.0 from 4 votes
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#8

in Pennsylvania

#853

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Photos

Fingerspan Bridge - Actually pretty cool!
Oct 3, 2015 near Bala-Cy…, PA
Tough uphill off of Forbidden Drive to get to the Yellow Trail.
Jan 4, 2016 near Bala-Cy…, PA
Glen Fern
Aug 7, 2018 near Wyndmoor, PA
Old acqueduct and view of Walnut Ln from below on the Wissahickon trails.
Jan 16, 2020 near Bala-Cy…, PA
Trail splits. White Trail to right, Orange Trail to left.
Jan 16, 2020 near Bala-Cy…, PA
Slippery rocks.
Jan 16, 2020 near Bala-Cy…, PA

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Check-Ins

Apr 12, 2020
Jon Szeto
5.7mi
Oct 14, 2019
Laura Shoop