We are re-visiting the Cynwyd Heritage Trail to take in the changes since our first visit. Work on the Trail (mostly locally-based volunteer efforts) is ongoing.
http://www.meetup.com/phillyhikes/events/42704562/ for pics, comments, etc., from last time.
One of the newest examples of the Rails-to-Trails movement, the Cynwyd Heritage Trail officially opened on October 23rd, 2011: two miles of paved recreational trail stretching from the Cynwyd train station to Rock Hill Road, with softer side trails, hillside views of Manayunk and the Schuylkill River, trees, grass, wetlands integration, and more. The original Cynwyd Line connection to Manayunk via the Manayunk Bridge will be converted to a connecting recreational trail by the summer of 2013.
For our September 9th event we will take a quick tour of the historic, renovated 1890 Cynwyd Station, and then walk 1.5 miles down the trail to take a peek at the entrance to the viaduct. At that point we will backtrack a bit to the beginning of a hiking trail which will lead us to some older rights-of-way, take in various historical sites, and traverse the Towpath Bridge across the Schuylkill River to the Manayunk Brewery, where we'll be finishing our first beer(s) by 2pm. Hiking boots are advised for your comfort and safety, as the path to the Manayunk Brewery involves some "real" hiking. (The Cynwyd Heritage Trail itself is mostly flat: if you choose to leave us before the hike to Manayunk, you can expect to get back to Cynwyd Station around 1pm or so.) See the self-guided tour here http://cynwydheritagetrail.com/About.html for a bird's-eye-view. (We will not be walking on the Penncoyd Bridge or Righter's Ferry Road.)
There are parking spaces at the Cynwyd train station (where we will be meeting), but I strongly suggest you *don't* bring your car: best connections are via the #44 and #65 buses, which stop on City Line Avenue at the Bala train station, a half mile away. (Please check www.septa.org for your best connection.) I'll be meeting those of you on the bus there, and we will walk the only way possible up Bala Avenue to historic Cynwyd station. (If you catch the next bus, you should be able to join us before we leave the Trail for the hike to Manayunk.) The Cynwyd Regional Rail Train (Bala is the next-to-last stop on the line) does not run on weekends (and has rather limited weekday service as well). Return to Center City from Manayunk is available via the Manayunk-Norristown Regional Rail Train. Please consult www.septa.org for bus and Regional Rail schedules and maps. (Google maps accessible through the location link above, can also be helpful.)
The Cynwyd Heritage Trail is a collaboration among a number of interested groups and individuals: the Lower Merion Historical Society has been involved for perhaps the longest. Board member Sarah Francis has generously agreed to serve as our historical tour guide once again for this walk. Special Thanks to Sarah for all her help in organizing this.
I'm looking forward to sharing this again!