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D & L Trail – Lehigh Gorge State Park Trail Pt. 2


This is a video of a bike ride I took in August of 2013 on the D&L Trail from White Haven, PA to Jim Thorpe, PA. The day was absolutely beautiful and the scenery was amazing. There are 3 video in this series.

Here is some information about this Trail that I took from www.TrailLink.com:

The entire route features river views on one side and about 15 miles’ worth of scattered waterfalls on the steep rock face on the other side. Although there is a slight grade going South, cyclists do have to pedal the entire way. Although there is plenty of wildlife within the park, it isn’t usually evident on the trail because the steep rock face makes the trail difficult to reach from inland. However, herons and beavers are commonly spotted on the river side, and you also might encounter an occasional snake or lizard. This 26-mile trail is certainly the highlight, but Lehigh Gorge State Park also offers opportunities to whitewater raft, fish, hunt and cross-country ski. The first 15 miles of the northern section is open to snowmobiling in winter months. Check the website for seasonal restrictions.

Although there is no obvious grade, cyclists do have to pedal to keep moving. During the last 5 miles of the trip, the trail runs next to an active railroad line that is elevated about 3 feet above the trail by a stone wall. Just 1.5 miles north of Jim Thorpe, the trail comes to a parking lot, then continues on, following the main road out to the recently renovated iron railroad bridge that crosses the Lehigh River. The bridge supports bicycle and pedestrian users, as well as an active railroad. An awesome reminder of the trail’s origins, the bridge was completed in 2009 after years of planning and provides an extra mile of trail leading into downtown Jim Thorpe.

Be sure to check out www.TrailLink.com for the best listing of rail trails on the web.

D & L Trail – Lehigh Gorge State Park Trail Pt. 1


This is a video of a bike ride I took in August of 2013 on the D&L Trail from White Haven, PA to Jim Thorpe, PA. The day was absolutely beautiful and the scenery was amazing. There are 3 video in this series.

Here is some information about this Trail that I took from TrailLink.com:

The entire route features river views on one side and about 15 miles’ worth of scattered waterfalls on the steep rock face on the other side. Although there is a slight grade going South, cyclists do have to pedal the entire way. Although there is plenty of wildlife within the park, it isn’t usually evident on the trail because the steep rock face makes the trail difficult to reach from inland. However, herons and beavers are commonly spotted on the river side, and you also might encounter an occasional snake or lizard. This 26-mile trail is certainly the highlight, but Lehigh Gorge State Park also offers opportunities to whitewater raft, fish, hunt and cross-country ski. The first 15 miles of the northern section is open to snowmobiling in winter months. Check the website for seasonal restrictions.

Although there is no obvious grade, cyclists do have to pedal to keep moving. During the last 5 miles of the trip, the trail runs next to an active railroad line that is elevated about 3 feet above the trail by a stone wall. Just 1.5 miles north of Jim Thorpe, the trail comes to a parking lot, then continues on, following the main road out to the recently renovated iron railroad bridge that crosses the Lehigh River. The bridge supports bicycle and pedestrian users, as well as an active railroad. An awesome reminder of the trail’s origins, the bridge was completed in 2009 after years of planning and provides an extra mile of trail leading into downtown Jim Thorpe.

Be sure to check out TrailLink.com for the best listing of rail trails on the web.

Northbound on the D&L Trail (Delaware Canal Towpath)


This is a video of a ride on the D&L Trail (about 20 miles north of New Hope, PA) I took in late August of 2014. This is just a small sampling of the Delaware Canal Towpath portion that runs for approx. 60 miles or so.

If you have time, you might want to check out the Southbound portion of the ride which is on a another video…

Here’s what Traillink.com has to say about the trail:

The Delaware Canal Towpath, which extends from Bristol to Easton, is the only continuous intact canal remaining from the historic canal-building era of the early and mid-1800s.

Today the 60-mile Delaware Canal Towpath, once trod by teams of mules pulling cargo-laden boats, is one of four named trails that make up the 165-mile D&L Trail, the backbone of the National Heritage Corridor and the longest publicly owned trail remaining in the state. Other trails contained in the D&L are: the Lehigh Gorge State Park Trail, the Lehigh Canal North, and Lehigh Canal South.

Flood damage in 2004 and 2006 closed entire sections of the trail while significant repairs were made. The trail reopened in July 2010. Most of the repair focused on the locks and canal itself. The trail surface remains bumpy from exposed tree roots; users should expect rough conditions.

A variety of looping routes can be followed using any of the five bridges that cross into New Jersey and connect to the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park on the Jersey side of the river. Trail users can easily access both sides of the river to explore quaint towns and in-land trails to take in scenic river views. Connecting bridges are in the Pennsylvania towns of Uhlerstown, Lumberville, Center Bridge, Washington Crossing and Morrisville.

Schuylkill River

Schuylkill River Heritage Corridor

schuykillriver_posterFrom the headwaters to the confluence with the Delaware, discover the exciting stories of those who helped found a nation and made Philadelphia the leading industrial city of the 19th century

The Urban Gateway…

schu_fairmountparkThe story of the Schuylkill River Valley begins with Philadelphia, the great port city of colonial America. The legacy of those early days is still alive at sites likeIndependence National Historical Park, Fort Mifflin, and Historic Bartram’s Garden. In the nation’s largest landscaped park, Fairmount Park, discover Boathouse Row, the Philadelphia Waterworks and the Philadelphia Museum of Art and enjoy walking, bicycling or roller-blading on miles of pathways.

Industry and Revolution…

schu_kilnAt Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, experience village life in a furnace town that was founded in 1771. Discover the stories of other early industries in the mill towns along the Schuylkill – the iron industry in Phoenixville, paper in Germantown, and textiles in Manayunk. Ride on the Schuylkill River Trail Bikeway between Philadelphia and Valley Forge National Historical Park, site of the 1777-78 winter encampment.

The “Breadbasket” of the American Colonies…

PittsburghThe fertile soil along the Schuylkill led immigrants upriver, where today you can discover a rich blend of the distinctive cultures whose farms fed the region and those far beyond. Visit Daniel Boone Homestead,Pottsgrove Manor and historic Reading. Wander the back roads to experience today’s agricultural villages, and don’t miss the Berks County Heritage Center, which offers an extraordinary glimpse into the agricultural heritage of the region.

A Ceaseless Demand For Coal…

The discovery of coal dramatically changed the physical and cultural landscape of the Schuylkill headwaters. To experience the richness of the coal region, visit Pottsville, Tamaqua, and communities along the Mahanoy Valley & Route 54 Corridor. Explore a real coal mine at Ashland Pioneer Tunnel, and visit the Museum of Anthracite Mining at Ashland. And look for the visible features of the Schuylkill Navigation Company canal system along the river in Schuylkill Haven, Port Clinton, Leesport, Mont Clare, and Manayunk.

 

River of Steel

The Steelmaking Capital of the World…

Discover the legacy of Big Steel as you explore the Pittsburgh area and the river valleys of southwestern Pennsylvania and the heritage of America’s Second Industrial Revolution. On guided riverboats and bus tours through the Rivers of Steel Heritage Corporation you’ll visit the great mill towns that gave this region the title “Steel Making Capital of the World.”

The Company Towns…

Pittsburgh/Point skyline with incline trolleyIn Homestead, Aliquippa, and the other “company towns,” you’ll learn how steel and mine workers struggled for safe conditions, decent wages, and the right to organize. Tour a working coal mine in Tarentum or view theEdgar Thompson Works in Braddock, a modern steel facility originally founded by Andrew Carnegie 125 years ago. Visit a preserved machine shop and foundry in Rice’s Landing along the Monongehala River and on to West Overton, to visit the birthplace of “Coke King” Henry Clay Frick.

Rich Cultural Experiences…

rsteel_museumIf it’s cultural experiences you’re looking for, Pittsburgh has its share of attractions including the John Heinz Regional History Center, Andy Warhol Museum,Carnegie Museums, and the National Aviary to name a few. A ride on the incline to the top of Mt. Washington to get a panoramic view of the city and the three rivers is a must.

Great Activities…

White Haven, Carbon CountyBe sure not miss the grand openings of two majestic new stadiums in Pittsburgh — PNC Park for the Pirates and also a new stadium for the storied Pittsburgh Steelers. VisitKennywood Park, and take a ride on the newest coaster, Phantom’s Revenge. Or, maybe shed a few pounds hiking or biking the Youghiogheny River Trail — voted one of America’s top trails — and stop by Ohiopyle State Park to see the “falls.”

Oil Heritage

The Birthplace of the Oil Industry…

oilheritage_posterTake a guess where the first oil well was drilled — no, not Texas — it was right here in a picturesque valley in Venango County, P.A.! The discovery shaped the nation and changed the world. Visit the birthplace of the worldwide oil industry at the Drake Well Museumoutside Titusville, with its full-size replica of Edwin Drake’s first successful oil well, drilled in 1859.

With Oil Came the Boomtowns…

oil_museumIn places like Pithole City and Petroleum Centre, get a closer look at valleys where vanished oil boomtowns that seemingly sprung up overnight, sparkled briefly and then faded into folklore.

History Well Preserved…

Potter County lumber museumThere are a number of great sites to visit throughout this region where history is kept alive — the Venango Museum of Art, Science and Industry in Oil City, the Venango County Historical Society in Franklin, DeBence Antique Music Museum with its mechanical musical devices, and the Old Emlenton Mill just to name a few.

Trails, Water and Views Galore…

Hi-Res scanToday, bass anglers and fly fishermen wet their lines in the scenic Allegheny River and Oil Creek, where oil coated waterways and derricks dotted the hillsides more than a century ago. In all the Oil Heritage Region has over 70 miles of hiking trails and 35 miles of paved bike trails. Look for trailheads near Franklin and Petroleum Centre. Canoeists, kayakers and jetboaters romp in the river, and they even have an Oil Region River Romp festival every September.

Walking tours in Emlenton, Franklin, Oil City and Titusville let you take a leisurely look at historic sites and great Victorian buildings; self-guided brochures are augmented with signage along the way.

National Road

The Nation’s First Interstate Highway…

Lumber_noembedAs the United States entered the 19th Century, the colonial frontier west of the Appalachian Mountains was becoming increasing independent from the Eastern seaboard. A road was needed to unite the nation. Commissioned by the U. S. Congress in 1811, the National Road was the nation’s first interstate highway and remains the only one ever constructed. The National Road State Heritage Park is a corridor celebrating and commemorating the history and heritage of the 90-mile stretch of US Route 40 which traverses the southwest corner of Pennsylvania.

A Journey Through History…

nraod_minerlampThe Petersburg and Searights toll houses, and the stone “S” bridge provide a glimpse back to those earlier days. So does Fort Necessity, which takes you back further to the French and Indian Wars and a young army colonel named George Washington. Right up the Road from the fort is Washington Tavern. Speaking of taverns, there are 48 standing structures that were once used as taverns or inns dating back to the National Road era, 1818 to 1853 and some are still being operated as bed and breakfasts and restaurants today!

Sights You Can’t Miss…

nroad_ftnecIf you like the small town charm of yesteryear, visit the historical districts of Uniontown and Brownsville, Addison and Claysville. While you’re in Brownsville, visit the Flat Iron Building to learn more about the National Road and the Rivers of Steel Heritage Area and don’t miss Nemacolin Castle overlooking the Monongehala River. Be sure to stop at Scenery Hill for those antiques you’ve been looking for and don’t miss the annual National Road Festival held in the month of May for over 25 years — the wagon train is a sight to see. Just take your time and enjoy the Road!

Celebrating the National Road

nroad_quiltEvery May for over 25 years has seen the amazing National Road Festival highlighted by the Wagon Train, a reenactment of National Road transportation history. Some of the other highlights include a period fashion show, watermelon seed-spitting contest and a Native American Festival at the State Theater. But, above all, just take your time and enjoy the Road!

Lumber Heritage

Penn’s Forest

Lumber_noembedIn 1682 when William Penn arrived to develop his colony, thick forest blanketed roughly 90% of Pennsylvania’s lands. The lands to the east, nearest to the first settlements, were quickly worked into farmland, but the northwestern area of Pennsylvania offered seemingly endless miles of lumber. Today, many historic small towns, such as Brookville, Ebensburg, Ridgway, Warren and Williamsport, dot the 15-county Lumber Heritage Region. Many of these unique communities began as large sawmills-vital centers of the logging industry. Visitors can tour the homes of former lumber barons, such as thePeter Herdic House. The Pennsylvania Lumber Museum in Galeton gives an intimate view of this heritage region.

Wagons and Waterways

lumb_canyonWoodsworkers, or woodhicks, used horses and oxen to tow timber-laden wagons along narrow trails. They carved logging trails to important rivers that carried timber to markets in Pittsburgh and beyond. Throughout centuries of change and harvesting, the region is still densely forested and teeming with wildlife. The elk population, once sparse, is abundant again. The ever-present woodlands are a magnet for outdoors enthusiast seeking to hike, bike, climb, kayak, camp and hunt. Allegheny National Forest, Heart’s Content National Scenic Area, Cook Forest State Park are popular destinations for rugged adventure.

Breathtaking Views

lumb_cooksToday, the heritage region can be broken down into five eras of lumber history, from the pioneers of this powerful industry to the present day efforts to sustain this bountiful habitat. Navigating the region is easier than ever and its roads and highways offer many breathtaking views. Three national arteries, I-80, I-99 and US 322, intersect at State College, also known as Happy Valley by tens of thousands of students who call Pennsylvania State University their home. Scenic Route 6 stretches across Pennsylvania’s northern tier, a favorite driving tour that includes thePennsylvania Grand Canyon where massive pine-covered mountains create expansive green vistas.

Lincoln Highway

Get Your Motor Running…

lincolnhighway_posterThe Lincoln Highway, U.S. Route 30 sparked a country’s imagination as the nation’s first coast-to-coast highway, running from New York to San Francisco and igniting a wave of automobile tourism in the early 20th century. In Pennsylvania, the Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor extends just east of Pittsburgh to beyond Gettysburg.

…Head out on the Highway

lhway_ribbonroadThe mountainous topography that you will encounter along the route will have you catching your breath, and stopping to take a look. The countryside will reveal a variety of quaint Pennsylvania towns — Ligonier, Schellsburg, Bedford, and McConnellsburg to name a few — where antiquing and unique shopping experiences take on an added dimension.

Looking for Adventure…

lhway_buggyAlong the way you’ll pass five of Pennsylvania’s impressive state parks.Laurel Mountain,Shawnee, Cowan’s Gap, and Caledonia State Parks are all found along U.S. 30’s historic and scenic route. If you like camping, hiking, fishing, biking, wildlife watching or just about any other outdoor adventure you’re bound to find it in one of these excellent state parks.

…And Whatever Comes our Way

lhway_fallwaterYour eyes won’t be playing tricks on you as you approach the S.S. Grandview Ship Hotel marooned atop the Allegheny Ridge or a two-story coffee pot in Bedford. Continue to the Old Jail in Chambersburg, where basement dungeons were used as a stop for the Underground Railroad. For Civil War(this link will open a new window) buffs, the road leads to Gettysburg and points beyond.

Lancaster – York

Food Market to the World

The two counties that form the Lancaster-York Heritage Region boast rich soil, quiet environs and quick access to major highways and cities. Nestled between mountains to the north and west and the Atlantic plain to the east and south, the area has attracted people of ambition and perseverance. Hard-working industrialists, craftspeople and farmers have taken the seeds of ideas to the region where they have blossomed into thriving industries and bountiful farmland. This success has earned the region the reputation as the original food market to the world.

Fertile Land, Faithful People

The Amish and the Mennonites–two major plain sects originating from Germany–chose Lancaster County as the place to nurture their pious traditions of modest dress, lack of electricity and non-motorized vehicles. Out-of-towners often watch with amazement as black horse-drawn carriages clip-clop along the road with cars and trucks. Their lifestyle, referred to commonly as Pennsylvania Dutch, resonates throughout the region, from home-cooked country food to intricate quilts to superior quality handmade furniture. Learn more about the German-American heritage at the Ephrata Cloisters,Hans Herr House and the Landis Valley Museum. When you begin to yearn for the 21st century, learn about the region’s strong arts and crafts reputation at theNational Clock and Watch Museum, Donnecker’s and the York Fairgrounds.

Do What You Can

Across the Susquehanna River lies York County, Factory Tour Capital of the World. During World War II when every person and machine was asked to work at all hours, York’s motto was “Do what you can with what you have.” With its deep history that stretches to the nation’s earliest days of independence, the town of York provides the best vantage point to view how community and industry can unite for strength and advancement. Tour the present day factory giants such as the Harley-Davidson Final Assembly Plant and Museum and the Susquehanna Pfaltzgraff Pottery Factory. Learn how York played a part in the development of our nation at the York Agricultural and Industrial Museum, the York Colonial Courthouse and by touring Downtown’s 25 historical, not to mention beautiful, outdoor murals.