Hiking Mount Misery at Valley Forge
If you are into history and hiking Valley Forge is a great spot to stop.
A brief history:
During the Revolutionary War, Valley Forge was commanded by General George Washington and functioned as a military encampment for the Continental Army’s main body.
In the winter of 1777, General George Washington led his 12,000-man army into Valley Forge. They remained there from December 1777 to June 1778. For six months, Valley Forge was one of the largest cities in the colonies. Washington’s men created crude huts to serve as temporary barracks. George Washington set up his headquarters in a small stone building considered to be the “Pentagon.” General Washington and his men worked there.
During the winter, roughly 2,000 soldiers and about 1500 horses died due to disease or malnutrition.
Today, Valley Forge National Historical Park preserves 3,500 acres of the original encampment site. Since it’s such a historic area, along with most of Philadelphia, I highly recommend taking a trip if you’re around.
I’ve been to Valley Forge multiple times, but it wasn’t until recently I knew there were trails. My good friend and writer, Jen and I headed up on a cool Thursday afternoon. There are a few trails that you can hike at Valley Forge and Washington’s Headquarters. Jen actually trained for her trail race in the park. From Washington’s Headquarters, you have the choice to hike Mount Misery and Mount Joy. We chose Mount Misery, but I want to come back to Mount Joy soon.
You can park at Washington’s Headquarters in Valley Forge. At Washington’s Headquarters, there are bathrooms as well as a still in use train station. There are also guided tours too. Walk down the Train Station platform and down the steps. As you continue along the gravel path at Valley Forge, you’ll see Washington’s Headquarters. Continue straight until you get to the road. At the fork, you can start with alley Creek Trail or Horse-Shoe Trail. It depends if you want to start with the easy (alley Creek Trail) and finish with the harder (Horse-Shoe Trail) or the opposite. Horse Shoe Trail is what takes you to the peak.
We started with Valley Creek Trail which is an easy, flat, trail. Horse-Shoe Trail takes you up Mount Misery and the Valley Creek Trail takes you back. You can see an old Covered Bridge as well. Hiking up trails on Mount Misery in Valley Forge is roughly a 4 miles from the parking lot at Washingtons Headquarters.
In all, it was a fun hike and I’m glad Jen and I did the Mount Misery Trail. I’m looking forward to hiking the Mount Hope Trail soon.
You can see more hikes here.
Questions for you:
What is the last historical spot you went to?
Have you hiked Mount Misery at Valley Forge?