It’s National Park Week! Perfect time to check out a few of Chester County, PA’s gorgeous local parks that are well worth a visit. #NationalParkWeek
For events & other recreational activities visit www.Brandywinevalley.com/parks-recreation.
Anson B. Nixon Park – Kennett Square
Located on North Walnut Street, just off State Street, Anson B. Nixon Park is a hidden gem nestled just north of charming downtown Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. Comprised of 106 acres, the Park was carved out of the historic woodlands of the late 18th through early 20th century Chambers estate. This natural setting includes two ponds, meandering streams, woodlands including a beech grove with specimens dating back over 250 years, and three miles of walking trails.
Anson B. Nixon Park has many exciting events including the Trout Rodeo, the Kennett Run, disc golf tournaments, and a summer concert series. Other events open to the public include the Kennett Run, Rock the Park Fundraiser and Sky Tours. The park is open from sunrise to sunset every day of the year. – Full info at www.ansonbnixonpark.org
French Creek State Park – Reading
Once an industrial complex for the fledgling United States of America, today French Creek State Park is an oasis for people and wildlife. Straddling the Schuylkill Highlands, the 7,730-acre park is the largest block of contiguous forest between Washington D.C. and New York City.
The forests, lakes, wetlands, and fields are a destination for the people of southeast Pennsylvania to hike, fish, camp, and bike.
Those same habitats are homes to many animals and plants that are rare in this corner of the commonwealth. French Creek State Park is an Important Bird Area as designated by the National Audubon Society, and an Important Mammal Area as designated by the Pennsylvania Game Commission. Pine Swamp is a State Park Natural Area. Full Info at www.dcnr.pa.gov/stateparks
Hibernia County Park – Coatesville
Hibernia County Park consists of over 900 acres of trails, woodlands, meadows, open fields, play areas, pavilions, camping and picnic areas. Popular fishing sites include the Brandywine Creek’s west branch, Birch Run & a children’s pond.
Chambers Lakeis a great spot for boating and fishing. Campgrounds are open on weekends May through October. Walking tours explore the legacy of the iron masters and country gentlemen who owned the estate.The walking tour focuses on mansion builders Charles Brooks and Colonel Swayne. Full Info at www.chesco.org/Hibernia-park
Marsh Creek State Park – Downingtown
Marsh Creek State Park is in the rolling hills of north central Chester County. The 1,727-acre park contains the 535-acre Marsh Creek Late, which is a wonderful resource for fishing, sailing, and migrating waterfowl.
March Creek Lake has two boat launch areas and 220 seasonal morning slips. The Lake is especially popular with sail boaters who take advantage of the combination of good natural terrain and prevailing winds. Full info at www.dcnr.pa.gov/stateparks/
Nottingham County Park – Nottingham
The 651-acre park sits atop an outcropping of serpentine stone greater then one square mile in size-one of the largest serpentine barrens on the East Coast. It features former feldspar and serpentine quarries, and numerous former chromite ore mines.
For it’s natural history and conversation efforts, the National Park Service recognized Nottingham County Park as a National Natural Landmark in 2008. Full info at www.chesco.org/nottingham-park
Valley Forge National Historical Park – Valley Forge/King of Prussia
Valley Forge National Historical Park is nationally significant as the site of the 1777-78 Winter encampment of the Continental Army under General George Washington. Few places evoke the spirit of patriotism and independence, represent individual and collective sacrifice, or demonstrate the resolve, tenacity and determination of the people of the United States to be free as does Valley Forge.
The park contains 19.5 miles of designated, marked, hiking trails. The 6.6 mile Joseph Plumb Martin Trail connects the key historic and interpretive sites. The Horseshoe Trail begins near Washington’s Headquarters and runs to the Appalachian Trail. Other hiking trails include such footpaths as the relatively flat River and Valley Creek trails, and the hilly trails on Mount Joy and Mount Misery. In addition, hiking is permitted in most open areas of the park. While hiking in the park please keep your pets on a leash at all times. info at www.nps.gov/vafo
Warwick County Park – Pottstown
Hardwood forests, meadows, wetlands, and the French Creek* are all jewels within Warwick Park’s 535 acres.
In the 18th and 19th centuries, Warwick’s woodlands provided much of the raw timber used to make charcoal for the region’s iron furnaces and forges. Remains of the iron industry can still be seen at various charcoal hearths along old cart paths.
The park features an ADA -accessible fishing deck along the French creek, a portion which meanders through the park. An ideal site for nature study, the Horse-Shoe Trail, extending from Valley Forge to the Appalachian Trail, adds length to the numerous miles of multi-use park trails.
The park also contains various pavilions, single-family picnic tables, two age-appropriate play areas, a sand volleyball court, horseshoe pit and a quoit pit. Full info at www.chesco.org/Warwick-Park
Wolf’s Hollow County Park – Atglen
Wolf’s Hollow was officially opened on December 6, 2010, making it the sixth regional county park in Chester County.
The 569 acre park lies along the uppermost reaches of the Octoraro Creek and the south rise of the broadening Great Chester Valley. These natural features provide beautiful bluffs where visitors can overlook the creek and glades of Mountain Laurel. Nearly ten miles of trails wind through varied topography, providing hikers with routes ranging from moderate to challenging. Birders appreciate the several hundred acres of mature woodland habitat that attract many less commonly observed birds such as Brown Thrashers, Scarlet Tanagers and Baltimore Orioles.
Wolf’s Hollow is managed as a rustic, natural park, with no public office and limited comfort facilities. Park hours are 8 AM to sunset, year-round (closed on Christmas Day). Dogs are permitted on a 6′ leash. Full info at www.chesco.org/wolfs-hollow-park
For information on walking/hiking trails and park activities in Chester County visit www.chesco.org
Make it a full weekend and stay at one of our amazing Bed & Breakfasts, Hotels, or Camp Sites – www.brandywinevalley.com