Angora Road Trailhead - Reading,
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Janila
N 40° 21.378 W 075° 52.478
18T E 425731 N 4467671
Quick Description: Take a 6.5 round trip ride on the historic Gravity Trail, starting at the Angora Road Trailhead and turning around at the end point on Neversink Mountain.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 9/7/2018 5:27:34 AM
Waymark Code: WMZ435
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member lumbricus
Views: 1

Long Description:
The story of the Gravity Trail from an article in the Reading Eagle by Liam Midgail-Smith.

"Watching sunlight filter through the tree canopy and dance off the petals of wildflowers and ferns along the Gravity Trail, you might think you're standing in an untouched parcel of nature.

The forest echoes with the sounds of birdcalls. Toads hop across the dirt path on their way back from the spring mating pools, quickly disappearing into a thicket of shrubs and small plants.

But a century ago, all of this was a lot different.

Those birdcalls would be mixed with the rambunctious group renditions of German folk songs and the sounds of the Mount Penn Gravity Railroad carrying wealthy industrialists and the working class of Reading alike to weekend destinations - the wineries, breweries and hotels scattered around the mountain, where they would eat, drink and be merry.

But Prohibition killed the parties and the train disappeared soon after. The buildings are gone, leaving behind crumbled, stone foundations as reminders.

The Gravity Trail, which officially opened Friday with a celebration at Egelman's Park in Reading, connects those reminders, weaving between the bed of the former railroad and the forests and wetlands around it.

The Berks County Conservancy finished work last year on the new hiking and biking trail, which connects public land in Reading and Lower Alsace Township through a network of old access roads and new and old trails.

It starts at Neversink Mountain, crosses city blocks in southeast Reading, cuts through several city parks and then zigzags across Mount Penn ending at Antietam Lake.

The trail has something for everyone, from the hiker to the scientist to the historian. Sights range from a historical, stone footbridge to an early to a wildlife-rich wetland.

The idea is to make a connection between nature and recreation areas, said Larry Lloyd, an ecologist with the conservancy. The trail, he said, also showcases what's truly great about a city that's often distracted with so many other struggles.

"It's very unusual for a city to have forest birds," Lloyd said, listening to the calls of ovenbirds, pileated woodpeckers and veeries surrounding the trail. "Not many cities have forests."

Trail Name: Gravity Trail

Short description of trail:
From the MTB website :

This doubletrack and singletrack combination trail can be ridden in either direction. Difficulty varies from Easy to Intermediate to a few Difficult sections, so use caution depending on your riding level.

Trail Average Difficulty:

Web Link to trail map (if available): [Web Link]

Visit Instructions:
One log per waymark per person per physical visit to the trailhead. You are welcome to log your own waymark locations.
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