I was planning on combating some winter blues with a winter solstice day trip from NYC to Philadelphia. I was writing to see if good routes are available. How should I cross the Hudson if I come from Brooklyn? Should I take the Staten Island ferry? The George Washington? A ferry to Hoboken? Could I do it in nine hours of daylight? How will I get across New Jersey? Across the Delaware? Is this idea stupid?
Raleigh Aspen touring/off-road hybrid, and a Bob Yak trailer. Yak very useful for us car-free types that like to buy lots of beer.
Well, I'm from NYC, and off the top of my head I can say it's a two hour drive from Staten Island to Philly. That means about 120 miles. That means 2 days bare minimum, but 3-5 if you want to enjoy it. Sounds like a cool idea though!
The East Coast Greenway - or what is currently finished - offers the best route between New York and Philly. http://www.greenway.org/
Look at the Delaware & Raritan Canal route - very nice - esp for Jersey - but you may want to call about conditions if it's been raining a lot. Best to use mountain bike. http://www.dandrcanal.com/gen_info.html
You might consider Seastreak fast ferry to South Amboy to start the trip - they have frequent departures - take you past the Statue of Liberty - and get you out of the worst of the congestion. http://www.seastreak.com/NR/exeres/5...F8A42B0598.htm
From South Amboy you can take NJ 525 to South River then cut over to New Brunswick and the D&R on NJ 608 (?) - - or you can stay on pavement all the way on NJ 525 to Trenton.
You'll have to do mostly streets south of Trenton - Big PDF file of bike map of Philly - most of the Greenway is just in the proposal stage here. http://www.phila.gov/streets/Philabik.pdf
Rough mileages -
South Amboy to New Brunswick - 10
New Brunswick to Trenton - 30
Trenton to Philly - 30
So 70 miles - shorter if you do all Jersey pavement - level route - easy to do if the weather is OK.
Amtrak trains with baggage cars depart Philly at 5:15p and 7:20p - BUT these trains don't take on passengers so you'll have to take another train - there are plenty - and meet your bike. If you check your bike and take the next train - you'll probably beat your bike back to NY-Penn Sta.
Best - J