Smedley Park
GOOD FOR: Ages 5-8

Source:Outdoors with Kids Philadelphia (AMC Books)
Address:20 Papermill Road, Springfield, PA
Hours:Sunrise to sunset daily
Fee: Free
Bathrooms: Near the playground
Water/Snacks: None

It’s easy to get to this well-loved park, where families can walk in the woods along Crum Creek.

Smedley Park
Photo by: Smallbones

The popular 120-acre Smedley Park is conveniently located, whether you’re traveling by car or public transportation. It’s a small park with a big heart that takes advantage of its location along Crum Creek. For young children, it’s good for a short walk in the woods.

Starting from the parking lot, cross the pretty arched pedestrian bridge over the creek to reach the woods trails. The dirt paths lead under I-476, as well as upstream with the creek, along a rocky hillside. If kids look carefully they will find “gems”—small, ruby-colored garnets studding the glittery, mica-laden rocks called Wissahickon schist. There is some climbing up and down; be prepared with sturdy shoes. Upstream of the bridge the creek is wide and rocky, good for splashing or wading in warm weather. As you go farther upstream, the terrain becomes steeper and rockier, with large outcroppings that have even more garnets.

Below the parking lot are a small, recently constructed playground and a shaded picnic area. The new Environmental Center, which focuses on gardening, is surrounded by plantings; the center itself is not designed for children but it is a nice place for young kids to look for butterflies among the plants and flowers. Fishing is permitted in the creek (warmwater fishing only, as it’s not stocked). The best access is along the bank between the two bridges.

Remember: Dogs must be leashed.

Plan B:

Across Baltimore Pike, you can gain access to trails along Crum Creek at Scott Arboretum.


Where to Eat Nearby:

Either head to Media or Swarthmore on Baltimore Pike, or stop in at the Springfield Mall, just east of Smedley.


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