Cycle Philadelphia, SIghtseeing and Kids Ride, Valley Forge to Perkiomenville
The Perkiomen Trail follows the former rail bed from Valley Forge to Collegeville, Schwenksville, Salford, and Perkiomenville. This path is great in bits and pieces, but you could also bike ride all the way from Philadelphia to make a weekend out of it by camping near the flea market in Perkiomenville or spending the night at The Globe Inn in East Greenville. It is about 95 miles round trip from Philadelphia to East Greenville, so be sure to bring a pal you like!
The route is mostly packed gravel, with a small paved portion at the start. There will be about seven miles of onroad pedaling if you ride all the way to East Greenville.
You are going to pass cyclists, joggers, and plenty of afternoon strollers, but the Perki trail is definitely less traveled than the SRT.
The ride begins on the Valley Forge section of the Schuylkill River Trail. You can park near the Betzwood picnic area just off the SRT, (about five minutes from the interchange of Route 422 and 202) or you can bike from the city to Valley Forge Ride for a 95 mile ride round trip. Septa buses 125 and 139 will bring you to Valley Forge/King of Prussia. Food and Drink Between miles 13 and 14, you’ll pass a sweet ice cream oasis in a sea of trees and gravel; Moccia’s Ice Cream Junction. The root beer floats are tops!
One of the best flea markets around! On Monday mornings the Perkiomenville Flea Market offers antiques, furniture and collectables, and there are over 300 dealers every week. If you pedal all the way to East Greenville, then catch a movie at The Grand – a recently restored one screen theater.
Bring a lunch, plenty of water and extra tubes for the ride from Valley Forge to Perkiomenville. The route is a mix of on-road, paved path, and packed gravel, so choosing which bike to ride will likely take more effort than the ride itself. As you leave Valley Forge National Historical Park, you’ll first bike ride through the Lower Perkiomen Valley Park and follow the luscious curves of the Perkiomen Creek for most of the bike ride. After you come to Upper Indian Head Road at about mile four, the trail becomes packed gravel and winds in and out of the woods.
The ‘out’ meaning that the trail will be interrupted by a few busy streets around Collegeville – just remember there’s no shame in hopping off your bike and walking across at the stoplights! The trail will pick up on the other side of these streets, and you’ll be back in the woods in no time. Otherwise, the trail is pretty well marked, and it is fairly difficult to get lost. You’ll come to a pretty steep downhill around mile 14. It’s a lot of fun to take, but can lead to a nice wipeout or two because of the packed gravel. You may feel some anxiety about climbing this beast on your way home; just knock that gear down and let your tires spin as you climb back up.
If you are chugging out to East Greenville, then your best bet is Route 29. It can be busy, but by this stage of the ride, you’ll be so ready to get off your bike that you’ll totally burn it up! Just remember, before you hit East Greenville the street numbers go down and then back up – you want the second Fourth Street if you’re heading to The Globe.
42.432 km / 26.366 mi
458 m / 1,503 ft
381 m / 1,249 ft
125 m / 411 ft