Valley Forge to Perkiomenville

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!

Terrain

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.

Traffic

You are going to pass cyclists, joggers, and plenty of afternoon strollers, but the Perki trail is definitely less traveled than the SRT.

Access

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!

Side Trip

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.

 

More Details

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.

 

Ride Log

  • 0.0 Start on the Schuylkill River Trail at Valley Forge, heading west.
  • 1.1 Stay on the SRT, exit Valley Forge National Historical Park.
  • 1.7 Cross the bridge and follow the switchback.
  • 1.9 You’ll come to the Phonexville/Perkiomen/SRT trail junction. Make a left to pedal towards the Perkiomen Trail. Ride through the Lower Perkiomen Valley Park.
  • 3.9 Left on Upper Indian Head Rd.
  • 4.1 Right to enter the Perki Trail (this is packed gravel). You are going to follow this for many, many miles!
  • 7.3 The trail pops you out on Second Ave in Collegeville. There is a drugstore on the corner if you need a cold drink or granola bar. Cross Second Ave and pick up the trail alongside the drugstore.
  • 7.7 The trail pops out, again, on the street. The Collegeville Diner is on the corner. CrossThird Ave, make a right on Ridge Park and then a left to pick up the trail (Pooped? The 93 bus will take you to Norristown Transportation Center).
  • 8.7 One more time! Cross Rt 29 and pick up the Perki path on the other side.
  • 10.5 Ride over the bridge to cross the Perkiomen Creek. This is a nice spot to cool off and dunk your feet.
  • 13.3 Pass Tailwind Bicycles to the left of the trail. You’re in Schwenksville!
  • 13.5 Moccias Ice Cream…Yes.
  • 13.7 Cross Schwenksville Rd and follow the path – it will curve right and then left. Follow the path back through the wooded area.
  • 14.5 Twelve percent downhill!
  • 15.0 Cross Spring Mt Rd and pick up trail.
  • 16.7 Cruisin’ through Salford.
  • 19.6 Come to Upper Ridge Rd and Rt 29. You’ve reached Perkiomenville! The flea market happens on this corner every Monday. There is camping nearby as well. If you are heading all the way to East Greenville, you’ll hop on Rt 29 and follow signs north.
  • 20.8 One of the first of a few hills on the way to East Greenville.
  • 21.8 Oh boy, there’s another.
  • 22.3 OUCH, there is the third hill!
  • 25.7 Rt 29 becomes Main St. The street numbers wind down to First/Front St, and then go up again.
  • 26.2 Left on Fourth St.
  • 26.4 Arrive at The Globe Inn.
  • Trail map

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    Back

    42.432 km / 26.366 mi

    Total Distance

    458 m / 1,503 ft

    Total Ascent

    381 m / 1,249 ft

    Total Descent

    125 m / 411 ft

    Highest Point

    Ride type:
    Sightseeing
    Mountain biking
    Road riding
    Commuter
    Kid friendly
    Rail Trail
    Gravel
    Various
    Difficulty: Intermediate (Red)
    Ride Duration: 2-4 hrs
    Fitness Level: Medium
    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
    Trail Signage: Good
    Mobile Coverage: Excellent
    Estimated Distance: 26.4
    Elevation Gain: 410
    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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