|Ready to Ride at Hopewell Furnace National Historical Site|
Well, we did it. Our two-day, Pedaling through Our National Parks Ride has come and gone and, in the words of our event organizer, Seth Gernot from Events Unlimited, it was awesome! With almost100 cyclists participating, we visited three National Park Sites and pedaled nearly 60 miles along the Schuylkill River Trail and on-road on September 20 & 21. Our cyclists encountered some challenging hills, learned a thing or two about local history, and, best of all, spent a beautiful September weekend outside on their bikes.
Schuylkill River Trail Bike Tour Series. We designed the series to promote the fact that many visitor sites can be accessed directly from the trail. This year, we also got to promote three National Historical Parks: Hopewell Furnace, Valley Forge and Independence.
Day 1: Hopewell Furnace to Valley Forge
The event featured about 30 miles of cycling per day (a bit more on the first day (Hopewell to Valley Forge) and a bit less on the second day (Valley Forge to Independence). The ride began on Saturday Sept. 21 at Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, where participants had the opportunity to tour the park before hopping onto their bikes.
|Morning tours at Hopewell Furnace|
|Riding into Riverfront Park in Pottstown|
Then, they headed off for a 21-mile ride to Valley Forge, along some scenic back roads and through a wooded section of the Schuylkill River Trail. The day was capped off by a program at Valley Forge by Park Ranger Marc Brier. Afterwards, cyclists and their bikes were shuttled back to their cars at Hopewell.
|Program at Valley Forge|
|Musket Demonstration at Valley Forge|
Day 2: Valley Forge to Independence
The second day began at Valley Forge, where cyclists immediately made their way onto the Schuylkill River Trail and followed it 22 miles to Philadelphia's beautiful Schuylkill Banks.We heard a brief but interesting presentation about the Washington Rochambeau National Historic Route from Superintendent Joe DiBello. Then we made our way to Independence National Historical Park, along some of Philadelphia's terrific bike lanes. We took a tour of Independence Hall, then the cyclists were shuttled back to Valley Forge.
|Before the ride at Valley Forge|
|Arriving at Schuylkill Banks|
|Bikes lined up at Schuylkill Banks|
|Lunch along the trail in Philadelphia|
|View from Schuylkill Banks|
|Group shot at Independence National Historical Park|
We are grateful to our volunteers, our partners at Schuylkill Banks and the National Park Service, Events Unlimited who managed the ride, and our sponsors: Exelon Nuclear ~ Brentwood Industries ~ Cast-Rite Metal Company ~ Translogistics, Inc. ~ My Print Shop ~ Pottstown Memorial Medical Center ~ Barwis Construction, LLC ~ Campbell Thomas & Company ~ Traffic Planning & Design ~ 422 Commercial Realty ~ Montgomery County Community College ~