Monday, June 3, 2013

Uwchlan and Struble Trails

Last month, seriously needing miles on my bicycle, I headed south towards Downingtown to ride two trails I'd read about, but never ridden. It was a story of contrasts.

Lets start with the easy part. The Struble Trail runs three miles along Brandywine Creek, and is flat as the proverbial pancake. It was the perfect way to get familiar with the bike again. And the combination of late afternoon sun and the familiar motion of my legs set my mind at peace.

The Uwchlan Trail is a contrast. While it connects to the Struble, it follows a creek that runs downhill. Which means the trail climbs and crosses Shamona Creek. It crosses the creek five times, which means many opportunities for the classic "bike on a bridge" photo.

Both the Struble and the Uwchlan  trails celebrate Pennsylvania's iron heritage by having preserved ruins of forges and mills along their paths. Dowlin Forge, for instance. One can't visit PA without driving by an iron forge site. Of course there are better things to do than drive by them. 

The roller-coaster aspect of the Uwchlan, combined with the fact its a township trail and narrower than the usual rail trail, meant it was cyclist-free when I rode it. Several walkers were out, and all of them understood my call "on your left." I finished the day with nine miles and a little practice for my ride in West Virginia the following week. Not enough, but some. I felt good. 



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A Taste For The Woods: Uwchlan and Struble Trails

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Uwchlan and Struble Trails