South Mountain

Emmaus, Pennsylvania

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6 Reviews
3 out of 5
If you get the hankerin’ for some wicked terrain, South Mountain is a technical rider’s dream. The network of trails resembles the web of a drunken spider, so giving directions here nearly impossible. To simplify things, I’ve linked the more prominent trails and included some of the fun highlights of the area. There is lots more to be found on South Mountain, and much of it is well hidden off the main trails. Pack some Power Bars and plan to spend the day exploring all the secret sweet-stuff this mountain has to offer. Highlights: tons of side trails to explore, some of the finest technical singletrack, great trails riding, roadside vista, a subterranean tunnel. Tread: the ride crawls past gnarly rock gardens and monolithic boulders, but there are also sections of soft, loamy, woodland singletrack, loose power line doubletrack, and grassy woods roads.

South Mountain Professional Review and Guide

"If you get the hankerin’ for some wicked terrain, South Mountain is a technical rider’s dream. The network of trails resembles the web of a drunken spider, so giving directions here nearly impossible. To simplify things, I’ve linked the more prominent trails and included some of the fun highlights of the area.

There is lots more to be found on South Mountain, and much of it is well hidden off the main trails. Pack some Power Bars and plan to spend the day exploring all the secret sweet-stuff this mountain has to offer. Highlights: tons of side trails to explore, some of the finest technical singletrack, great trails riding, roadside vista, a subterranean tunnel. Tread: the ride crawls past gnarly rock gardens and monolithic boulders, but there are also sections of soft, loamy, woodland singletrack, loose power line doubletrack, and grassy woods roads."

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Emmaus
Distance: 8.7
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Technical Difficulty: Difficult
Physical Difficulty: Moderate
Duration: 1.5 - 2.5 hours
Trailhead Elevation: 500 feet
Top Elevation: 990 feet
Local Contacts: Allentown Power Company and the Nature Conservancy
Local Maps: USGS Allentown East
Driving Directions: Directions to South Mountain

Recent Trail Reviews

5/11/2011
0

I should probably look closer at the date of the latest reviews before committing to a trail over an hour from my house. I went here 5/11/2011. Arrived about 11:30. Left around 12:30 after scratching my head for a good 15 minutes trying to figure out how exactly anyone could have given it a positive review. Maybe 5 years ago it was thriving, however, today, it's just a waste of time, and of $4/gallon gas. This is how your day will go if you choose to disregard that warning. You'll arrive, set up your bike and enter the trail which is located approximately 1 mile north of the mapped trailhead on this site. If you didn't bring a GPS, your day ends there. If you did, continue on... You'll begin your trek and promptly find yourself situated on a beautiful lakeside view, however, you are now on an elderly farmer's property, and his awareness of a trail in his backyard and guidance back to it is minimal. You then turn around and find a trail leading up a mountain. You think, score, I found it. You ascend the hill and find yourself at a crossroads. You can choose one of 4 directions, each leading nowhere. trails a and b lead to the interstate. trails c and d lead to private property. You can choose to ignore the posted signs and continue on through the private land, however, soon, you will fully enveloped in the wilderness and the thickets will, in time, eat you alive. Yet you can forge along anyway. But make sure you have breaks on your bike. Without them, you may become lodged in one of the many fallen trees blocking the path in entirety. Forge along further and you will find yourself right back at your car, which was parked along the road, because, oh, there is no parking lot, because, really, there is no trail.


8/14/2008
0

5/20/2006
0

A great trail if you can find it…Kunes lane is actually Klines lane and the parking lot is off of Klines. DON'T go here without a GPS. There is a maze of trails going through this area and it is very easy to lose your bearings. The only way I found the parking lot was through trial and error. When I finally did find it, I spent 20 minutes looking for the right trail. However…If you start from the south mountain park (from the gravel parking lot,make a right onto klines ln, make a right onto Emmaus rd, then make a right onto east main street, east main street becomes Dalton ave, Dalton ave becomes Emmaus ave, go under rt 78, continue on West Emmaus ave and then make a right on 10th street, follow to the end and go around the park circle taking the first right fork, on your right eventually you’ll see an orange gate with orange trail blazes on the trees, park where you see the small pond on your right) Take the orange trail, you will go past the gazebos and explore this are tp find awesome trails, the gazebos, and the tunnel.(exercise caution, there is moss and algae on the floor of the tunnel along with about an inch and a half of water…go into that tunnel too fast and you’ll slide all the way through it on your but…oops… :-) All around this area are some great trails. Allow a full day for exploration and bring a GPS or at the very least a compass and topo map. Also be aware that most of the ride described in the book is on private property with some frightening signs including one that says “stay the f*** out of our backyard!!” written on a 4’x8’ sheet of plywood. I chose to obey that sign. There are more common, less threatening “no trespassing” signs on the entrances to many side trails so be careful and aware. Happy Trails! ~Steve


1/30/2006
0

here's the deal. i live 5 minutes from these trails and have been riding them for a couple of years and still dont know all that is out there. if you try using directions you will get frustrated and have a wasted day. you need to go out there with PLENTY of time to spare and just explore. all of the trails eventually loop around to one of the main trails so if you get lost, it shouldnt be for long. it is a fun ride but it definitely helps to know it well.


4/15/2005
0

First of all, the directions to get to the trail are horrible, roads are misspelled, parks are mis-named, and some streets aren't even marked. I tried entering the trails per the instructions, and found alot of overgrown pricker bushes and large logs fallen along w/a ton of "PRIVATE PROPERTY" signs. I tried entering via the "South Mountain Park" which no one in the area knew about except one gentleman who referred to the "resevoirs". Indeed there are resevoirs at the "park" and around the resevoirs there are a few trails, but you could probably do them all in 45min - and they're not very difficult - DON'T GO THERE it's a waste of time!



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May 2018