The Cobbs Creek Bikeway

Cycle Philadephia, Sightseeing and Kids Ride, The Cobbs Creek Bikeway

Far out in West Philadelp, ia you’ll find the Cobbs Creek Bikeway, a quiet path that stretches from 63rd Street and Market on down to 70th. City and nature collide along this bike ride – to one side you’ll see the creek and its verdant trees, to the other you’ll watch the cityscape of West Philly fly by. This juxtaposition makes for some of the most unique urban bike riding that Philadelphia has to offer.

Terrain

A multi-use paved path that runs along the road, except for a small section that winds through the woods. As with many other routes in Philadelphia, be on the lookout for scattered glass and light debris patiently waiting atop the pavement to pop your new tires.

Traffic

The Cobbs Creek Bikeway generally has less foot and bicycle traffic than the paths nearer to Center City, but the picnic areas, basketball courts and playgrounds along the way are hopping in the warmer months.

Access

You’ll find a parking lot near the northern end of the path on 63rd and Walnut Street in West Philadelphia. The Spruce Street bike lanes and the 21 bus will also get you close by.

Food and Drink

Not many options along Cobbs Creek, so best to bring some snacks and extra water for your ride.

Side Trip

Check out Love Letter, a collection of 50 rooftop murals by former graffiti artist Steve Powers for the Mural Arts Program. This awesome collection of public art runs along Market Street between 45th and 63rd. TheMarket/Frankford El gives a great view.

 

More Details

Starting out at the northern tip of the recreation path, you’ll pass the Laura Sims Skate House and the Cobbs Creek Recreation Center. The pool by the rec center is barely visible from the path, but the giggling and splashing can be heard all the way down the block in the summer months. The Cobbs Creek Community Environmental Education Center is up next. CCCEEC is housed in a beautifully restored stable on 63rd and Catharine. It offers programming for activists of all ages, from the Senior Environmental Corps to The Park Management for Youth Program.

The bike path follows the rhythm of the city blocks, and in some sections you’ll have to cross the street in order to reach the path on the next block. On 61st Street (seems illogical but the street number is correct, it’s just a funny angle) the path curves to the right around Cobbs Creek Park. You’ll continue along path adjacent to the park until reaching Baltimore Avenue. After crossing Baltimore, follow the path past the basketball courts to enter the woods. This section of the path is quieter than the others.

You’ll pass an old railroad trestle sprouting up from the ground, a striking sight in the summer when surrounded by big bushy tree leaves. It looks like the top of the canopy. Continue along the path and follow the creek before hitting a steep switchback – the only hill of the ride. When you emerge from the woods, you’ll be riding alongside the curvy Cobbs Creek Parkway.

The old stone walls after Mount Moriah Cemetery seem to hold the stories of centuries. You’ll pass under a few scattered bridges before you are jolted out of your escape by busy 70th Street, marking the end of the path. After you turn around at 70th Street to head back north, you may feel something of a slow burn – there will be a slight incline for most of the way back to 63rd Street.

 

Ride Log

  • 0.0 Start on Walnut St heading south on the Cobbs Creek Bikeway. Pass the Laura Sims Skate House and the Cobbs Creek Recreation Center to the right.
  • 0.6 Pass the Cobbs Creek Environmental Education Center at 63rd and Catharine.
  • 1.1 Make a right at 61st St to follow the path around Cobbs Creek Park.
  • 1.3 Cross Baltimore Ave and follow the path into the woods.
  • 1.5 Pass under the railroad trestle.
  • 1.6 Follow the switchback and enjoy the climb!
  • 1.7 Pop out on 59th St and make a right to continue along the path.
  • 2.5 Pass Mt. Moriah Cemetery to the right.
  • 3.3 Ride underneath the 65th St bridge.
  • 3.5 Reach 70th St. Turn around and head north back towards 63rd and Walnut.
  • 7.0 Back at Walnut and ride’s end.
  • Trail map

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    11.237 km / 6.982 mi

    Total Distance

    154 m / 505 ft

    Total Ascent

    154 m / 504 ft

    Total Descent

    34 m / 113 ft

    Highest Point

    Ride type:
    Sightseeing
    Mountain biking
    Road riding
    Commuter
    Kid friendly
    Rail Trail
    Gravel
    Various
    Difficulty: Beginner (Green)
    Ride Duration: 1-2 hrs
    Terrain:
    Shared Bike Path - Paved
    Shared Bike Path - Dirt
    On-Road Bike Lane
    On-Road
    Off-Road - Fire Trail
    Off-Road - Rail Trail
    Off-Road - Single Track
    Off-Road - Downhill
    Mobile Coverage: Excellent
    Estimated Distance: 7.0
    Elevation Gain: 107
    Services:
    Water
    Food
    First Aid
    Toilets
    Bike hire
    Carparking
    Bike servicing
    Accessible by bike
    Accessible by car
    Accessible by public transport
    Accessible by shuttle / uber

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