Missing link in popular Northwest Lancaster County River Trail will open Saturday

 

→ Missing link in popular Northwest Lancaster County River Trail will open Saturday – LancasterOnline

As noted in my photo gallery post on the White Cliffs of Conoy the path beneath the Shocks Mill Bridge has been passable for several weeks. This pedestrian bridge, that provides the final link between Marietta and Bainbridge, was officially opened on Saturday November 1, 2014.

Shocks Mill Bridge – Lancaster County, PAMy only worry concerning this construction project was with the fate area over which the walkway was to be constructed, which consisted of a lovely stretch of riverside limestone outcrops and usable beach. As was expected some of this area was destroyed by the walkway’s footprint. But judging from the photos some of the outcrop area survived. I’m planning to check out the new construction soon and will be able to get a better idea of the impact the new path had on the existing landscape. You can see a photo of a part of the area in this image from the Shocks Mill Bridge gallery I posted in July of this year. It had been possible to pass under the bridge on foot when the river’s level was low enough but to the general public this option was obviously not a feasible way to make the connection and the construction of the walkway was a necessary step required the larger goal of having a continuous and easily accessible trail from Columbia to Falmouth.

I guess in the scheme of things the loss of the existing terrain at this spot is a small price to pay for connecting the the two halves of the trail but it still sad to see this little spot so dramatically changed. I’m glad I got to enjoy it this summer before the pathway was built. Likewise with the massive old rusted buildings that once stood in between the Billmeyer quarry and the White Cliff of Conoy. Although in a sense these structures could have been thought of as marring the natural landscape they did serve of a visual reminder of the history of the area and, in my opinion, were aesthetically pleasing to look at despite ( in fact because of) their dilapidated condition.

Directions to Northwest Lancaster County River Trail trailheads

• Decatur Street Trailhead (Marietta Borough) Parking and trail access is available by traveling through the stone arch tunnel at the end of
Decatur Street, which intersects Market Street.
• Riverfront Park (E. Donegal Township) Located off Rt. 441, trail users can access parking by turning west onto Vinegar Ferry Road and proceeding through the stone arch tunnel.
• Bainbridge Access Parking and Trailhead are located off Rt. 441 by turning West onto Race Street. Follow to the small park by the river.
• Falmouth Boat Access (Conoy Township)
The northern trailhead is located at the PA Fish & Boat Commission access in the village of Falmouth. Parking and trail access is available by turning west onto Collins Road from Rt. 441.

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