60 Hikes within 60 Miles Philadelphia - 2nd Edition  by Lori Litchman

60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Philadelphia - 2nd Edition Guide Book

by Lori Litchman (Menasha Ridge Press)
60 Hikes within 60 Miles Philadelphia - 2nd Edition  by Lori Litchman
Get outdoors with local author and hiking expert Lori Litchman as she helps you find and enjoy the top hikes within 60 miles of the city. These selected trails transport you to scenic overlooks, wildlife hot spots, and historical settings that renew your spirit and recharge your body.

© 2017 Lori Litchman/Menasha Ridge Press. All Rights Reserved.

Trails from the "60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Philadelphia - 2nd Edition" Guide Book
Displaying trails 20 of 60.

Displaying trails 1 to 20 of 60.

Although Baldpate Mountain is the highest point in Mercer County, this route goes through a relatively flat section of the park. The mountain is a tiny one, at only 470 feet. But in a coastal plain area with few changes in elevation, it is significant. The mountain is part of nearby volcanic mountains known as the Sourland Mountain Ridge. Baldpate Mountain has more than 12 miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding.From the parking area, you’ll have a pretty steep uphill trek on a paved path. When you get to the top, you’ll see a kiosk and the lodge and visitor center.
Titusville, NJ - Hiking,Horseback Riding,Mountain Biking - Trail Length: 4.5 miles
Binky Lee Preser ve is the perfect place to take a break from a busy schedule. With its meadows and woodlands, it offers a short, peaceful trek along former farmlands. The Natural Lands Trust manages the 112-acre natural area that offers about 4 miles of trails to explore. The land was donated to the trust in 1989 so that it could be preserved as open space. Since then, more than 10,000 trees have been planted to expand the forested area. Hunting is permitted here. If you are hiking in fall, be sure to wear orange or hike on Sunday, when there is no hunting permitted.
Chester Springs, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 2 miles
The Pine Barrens are a unique environment in New Jersey in the Atlantic Coastal Plain. What makes the barrens special is that both the water and the soil have a very low pH, which means that only certain plants and animals can live here. Grasses and low shrubs tend to thrive in the sandy soil and flat land, and there are many wetlands. This hike traverses some old cranberry bogs and is a stunning place to visit in the fall when the leaves have changed. The 1,300-acre preserve has several short hikes throughout. It is home to a number of threatened and endangered species in the state of New Jersey, including the Eastern Box Turtle.
Evesham Township, NJ - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 1.5 miles
Brandywine Creek State Park was once a dairy farm owned by the famed du Pont family. The stone walls throughout the hike are made of local stone and are reminiscent of simpler times. The area became a state park in 1965 and was one of the first of its kind in the nation. Today, this park is nearly 1,000 acres and provides 14 miles of trails, as well as numerous recreational activities, including hiking, biking, fishing, and boating. Be sure to check the rules about paying a fee to use the park. Envelopes and drop boxes are located in the parking areas.
Wilmington, DE - Hiking,Mountain Biking - Trail Length: 2.7 miles
Bull’s Island Recreation Area has a small forest of mainly sycamores, maples, and tulip poplars. This is an easy hike that gives you an up-close look at the sprawling Delaware River, one of the major rivers that eventually winds its way through Philadelphia and ultimately to the Atlantic Ocean. The recreation area is home to several unique species of plants, including ostrich ferns. The dirt path is wide and in partial shade. This hike is in a floodplain, so be aware that heavy rains could make for muddy and wet conditions.
Stockton, NJ - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 1 mile
Although this hike is short in both time and distance, it is definitely worth checking out. Carpenter’s Woods is an easy afternoon stroll. It is a popular spot for folks walking their dogs. And, as it is a haven for migrating birds, the National Audubon Society has deemed it an Important Bird Area. According to area bird enthusiasts, spring is the peak birding season here, when you have the best chance of spotting migrating birds, particularly warblers. The starting point of this hike is also the best place to start for birding, and the best time is right after sunrise.
Philadelphia, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 0.7 mile
Churchville Nature Center has myriad offerings for the nature lover. It’s 54 acres of green with tons of wildlife viewing opportunities. It can provide a quiet, contemplative hike in the early morning or an outdoor classroom bustling with the energy of children learning about their natural world. The center was created to educate visitors about the natural world and help instill in them an appreciation and commitment to caring for the environment. In addition to the hike described here, there’s a nature center with exhibits, a butterfly house (for a fee), and a re-created Lenape American Indian village.
Churchville, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 1 mile
This hike starts off surrounded by working farmland and seems flat and easy at first. But in the forest are some rolling hills that came about years ago when this area was mined for clay. Burlington County has spent much money sprucing up its parks and trails, and Crystal Lake Park has benefited. The parking area is off Axe Factory Road and has about 20 spaces and a little building with bathrooms. There’s a picnic pavilion to enjoy a snack or lunch before or after your hike. This area is part of a working farm, so please be mindful of that fact throughout your hike.
Bordentown, NJ - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 2 miles
Cushetunk Mountain Preserve is part of a mountain that was formed by volcanoes millions of years ago. The Lenni Lenape American Indians called the land cushetunk, which means “place of hogs.” There are no hogs around today, but there are tons of boulders for those looking for a more challenging hiking experience. There are plenty of roots and rocks in the trail, so watch your footing. At the top of the hill, follow the White Trail as it breaks off to the left. Off to the right you can see Round Valley Reservoir through the trees. This hike has an incredible number of ticks, so be sure to do a tick check after your hike.
Lebanon, NJ - Hiking - Trail Length: 3 miles
This hike is part of the Delaware Canal State Park, which is essentially a 60-mile stretch between Easton and Bristol. Start in the Erwinna section, with your stepping-off point in Tinicum Park, which has areas for picnicking and a disc-golf course. As you enter the trail, you are entering a relic of a bygone era. The canal was built in the 1800s to provide a thoroughfare for the anthracite coal industry. As you are walking, try to imagine teams of mules trudging to pull boats through the canal. Restrooms are at Tinicum Park, but none on the trail.
Erwinna, PA - Hiking,Mountain Biking,Walking - Trail Length: 2 miles
Evansburg State Park is a favorite spot for folks in Montgomery County looking for a quiet, natural space. The Unami tribe (part of the Lenni Lenape) first settled the land that is today’s park. This hike offers a nice retreat into the woodlands with a small picnicking area along the way. There are several parking areas to access the park. For this hike, try to find a spot below the playground area because those spots are closer to the visitor center and trails. At the visitor center pick up a map at the kiosk. The trails are marked, but not incredibly well.
Collegeville, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 2.6 miles
This preserve is environmentally unique because it lies on the dividing line between the geologically different Atlantic Coastal Plain and the Piedmont Plateau. Parts of the hike are along the coastal plain and others along the plateau. Put simply, the piedmont is more rocky and hilly, while the coastal plain is flat with sandier soil. Because it’s a nature preserve, the only activities allowed in the park are walking, hiking, and photographing or just enjoying nature. There is no fishing or hunting allowed, and pets and bicycles are forbidden.
Morrisville, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 3 miles
This park stretches between Springfield and Whitemarsh Townships and is a great spot for hiking and picnicking. Like many of the parks in the book, this one is a pack-in, pack-out park, meaning there are no trash cans. You are responsible for removing any trash you produce while visiting the park. Fishing is allowed in Wissahickon Creek, but no hunting is allowed, so no need to worry about wearing blaze orange if you are visiting in the fall. This hike is also part of the Green Ribbon Trail, which stretches for 12.6 miles throughout Montgomery County. Watch out for the plentiful poison ivy along the trail. The gravel trail is very well defined.
Flourtown, PA - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 3.3 miles
This hike is a gem. Around every turn and every few steps, you will find yourself surprised by a unique mushroom, nearly hidden cranberry plants, or amazing moss and lichens. Franklin Parker Preserve is near so much protected open space, including Brendan Byrne State Forest, Wharton State Forest, Bass River State Forest, and Penn State Forest. The preserve itself has nearly 10,000 acres, 5,000 of which are wetlands. Take this hike slowly, not because it’s difficult, but because you want to make sure you keep your eyes peeled for all of the beauty surrounding the trail. The moss alone is a marvel.
Chatsworth, NJ - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 3 miles
According to the state park’s website, French Creek State Park has the “largest block of contiguous forest” between Manhattan and Washington, D.C. And it sure feels that way when you step onto the trail. Once you head into the woods on this trail, you leave everything behind. The park is 7,730 acres and offers any kind of activity an outdoors lover might want, from camping and picnicking to hiking and biking. The park is also designated both an Important Bird Area and an Important Mammal Area by the National Audubon Society.
Elverson, PA - Hiking,Horseback Riding,Mountain Biking - Trail Length: Several Options
How would you like to stand where George Washington once stood? You can on this hike. During the Revolutionary War, legend has it that George Washington stood at the top of the hill to spy on enemy activity up and down the Delaware River. This very short hike features an amazing view when you get to the top. The gravel path starts at the end of the parking area to the left. Go through the gate and continue on the path. Pack a picnic lunch to enjoy at the top overlooking the Delaware River.
Lambertville, NJ - Hiking,Walking - Trail Length: 1 mile
Green Lane Park in northwestern Montgomery County has oodles of things to do, from fishing and boating to picnicking, and it has trails for equestrians, mountain bikers, and hikers. The park has three lakes within its boundaries, including the 814-acre Green Lane Reservoir, which was created from the damming of the Perkiomen Creek. The county partnered with the water company decades ago to create the reservoir to ensure a reliable water supply for the area. The path is hard-packed gravel and starts off in full sun. The beginning of the hike has meadows on either side of the trail. There’s a fair amount of poison ivy along the narrow path, so be mindful of that while you’re walking
Green Lane, PA - Hiking,Horseback Riding,Mountain Biking,Walking - Trail Length: 3.6 miles
The Green Ribbon Trail is part of a 12.6-mile-long trail system that weaves its way through Montgomery County. The trail stretches from Upper Gwynedd Township to Whitemarsh. This hike takes in only a small piece of the trail and starts at the Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association (WVWA). Because this hike is in a flood-plain, the trail is pretty muddy after any rain. The trailhead of this hike is a metal bridge. This woodsy hike takes you along Wissahickon Creek and the accompanying flood plain. You’ll even get the chance to hop across the creek, which could be difficult if you have a dog with you.
Ambler, PA - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.5 miles
Herrontown Woods is off the beaten path in Princeton Township. It was once the estate of Oswald Veblen, an internationally known mathematician at Princeton University. He and his wife left their property to the county to be preserved as natural space. The buildings on the property are part of Veblen’s homestead and have a bit of an eerie feel when you pass them. While there is very little elevation change, there are tons of rocks and roots to maneuver around, making the hike moderately difficult. The trail is in full shade and is a dirt path with the occasional rock stepping-stone path.
Princeton, NJ - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.7 miles
If you are looking for a peaceful place to escape for a quick, easy hike with nice scenery, this is the hike for you. It’s also a great hike for kids because it is flat, wide, and there’s plenty to look at as you meander about the land. Hunterdon County Arboretum was once a commercial nursery that has since been transformed into a lovely park. The 73-acre park has a variety of trees and shrubs, in addition to gardens and wetlands. There are a number of places to sit quietly throughout the hike and the arboretum grounds. There are picnic tables throughout.
Lebanon, NJ - Hiking - Trail Length: 1.1 miles