What a great ride! A trail that loops! Historical sights to see along the way! Beautiful scenery! This trail has it all! Once again Traillink (and the bikers who contribute reviews) guided us to an amazing trail – The Ironton Rail Trail.
We began our journey at Hokendauqua Park – easy to find and provides easy access to the trail. You wind through the playground and then connect with the trail. The trail is paved at this point and is for the most part flat with just a slight incline.
The highlight to the first part of this loop (in addition to the great scenery and the Lehigh river!) are the large cement kilns at Saylor Park. This is a great place to stop and take a break and explore the history of these kilns. These are the only vertical Portland cement Kilns in existence! They were only used for this purpose for a short period of time – 1893-1904 – but during that time Lehigh Valley produced 3/4 of the cement in the United States! (Apparently at one time there was a museum interconnecting the kilns but that is no longer accessible. There is a large fence around the nine kilns). Really neat! And the trail continues with historical markers, remains of the old railroad, and even a caboose that once road on this railroad!
We decided to take the spur – adding on another 6 miles roundtrip – another beautiful ride past cement historical buildings. Highlight for me was one of the old structures that was turned into a beautiful bird blind (picture up top).
We joined back up with the loop and continued on the loop to our starting point. This is a beautiful ride to take right now as the leaves are changing. The entire trail is well maintained and combined with the amazing scenery and historical sights, one does not even realize they have already completed a 12 mile journey.