Montco offers the best biking around. In this second tour in our Bike Montco series, we strap on our helmets to head to a cozy borough for challenging hills, and expansive views, while safely social distancing.
Welcome to the Borough of Bridgeport, a tightknit community located in the heart of Montgomery County. Bridgeport was built upon an industrial past and the steep hillsides on the southern banks of the Schuylkill River across from the County Seat of Norristown. While some industry remains, today Bridgeport is poised for a new and exciting future, and with 4,600 residents living in just 0.8 square miles, there is a lot to see.
Your tour of Bridgeport starts on the river, just over the border at the Upper Merion Boathouse Park. From there you will wind your way up through the borough, climbing over 220 feet to the top of town and 20-mile views to the west at Bridgeport Memorial Park. Then the route takes you out the secret back door of Bridgeport to surrounding Upper Merion and, if you so choose, over to Workhorse Brewing just off of Crooked Lane. Afterwards, you will travel along quiet residential streets to the Norristown High Speed Line (NHSL) DeKalb Street Station, back up into Bridgeport and down into Swedesburg section of Upper Merion (you’ll never know you left Bridgeport). From there you will turn around and zigzag you way back to downtown before returning to the start.
As with our “Homes and Gardens of the Main Line,” this route avoids major highways and most (but not all) arterial streets. Accordingly, while all effort was made to minimize exposure to heavier traffic, some busier streets could not be avoided. Still, most adults should be able to easily tolerate the amount of traffic along the route. However, as the name suggests, the hills of Bridgeport CANNOT be avoided, so this route is recommended for fit cyclists not afraid of climbing hills.
And, what goes up, must come down, so steep downhills are also to be expected. As such, those trying the route must also have a bike with properly functioning brakes, and know how to handle a bike on steep slopes under hard braking. The route is easily accessible by SEPTA from the Norristown Transit Center and the Norristown High Speed Line (NHSL). However, being a rather short route, we suggest adding the “Bridgeport Hills Will Test Your Cycling Skills” tour to a ride from the nearby Schuylkill River Trail, just two tenth of a mile away.
And while this tour takes you to a from two brewpubs and directly past some other fine establishments, make sure you consider visiting some other Bridgeport institutions like Suzy-Jo Donuts and Taphouse 23 on 4th Street, Bridgeport’s “Main Street”.
Elevation Gain 454 ft
Max Grade Up 11.0%
Max Grade Down 15.5% (!!!)
Traffic Skill Level Club level cyclists comfortable with steep hills and modest traffic volumes.