The Community Park at Haverford Reserve is Haverford Township's newest and largest open space recreation area. Within and around the Reserve, there are over five miles of walking trails that you can use from dawn to dusk. In general these trails are in wooded areas and have varying degrees of steepness. Their surface is mostly natural or a woodchip mulch. They are largely walking and jogging trails, although the township Parks and Recreation Department permits off-road bicyclists to use them with due respect and consideration of others on the trail. Please note that some trail stubs (not shown on the map below) lead off to housing areas and are private paths for the residents of the housing developments to access the public trails. As shown in the right-most photo below, the initial portion of the Southbrook Trail, as far as the Switchback Trail, has a macadam surface.
The Google Maps overlay below, created by the Friends of Haverford Trails, shows the trails in Haverford Reserve.
The many trails in the "Northside" section (north and west of Parkview Drive on the map) can get confusing, so most have been blazed with color-coded markings on trailhead signs and trees along their length, matching the colors shown on this map.
The Parkview Drive Sidepath (shown in brown on map) is a macadam sidepath alongside Parkview Drive through the developed area of Haverford Reserve. It connects at Darby Road with the Buck-Meadows-Williams on-road Bike Route to offer direct walking and bicycle access into Haverford Reserve and its dirt walking trails from the northern part of the township.
The Meadow Trail (shown and blazed in red) has a fairly steep descent to its footbridge over North Brook and the other wooded trails in this area. For a more gradual descent (and later ascent to leave) use the Athertyn Trail (yellow) and PECO Trail (blue) in combination. The Old Gray Trail (gray) is also on the other side of the North Brook.
To get to the trails west of I-476 (Blue Route Trail (light blue), Backwoods Trail (dark blue), and Railroad Trail (Tuscan red)), take either access leg of the Blue Route Trail. One starts to the left of the CREC building and its parking lot (behind the cell tower), and the other starts to the right of the building (go down the outside stairway and head to the far end of the retention basin). Both options lead to an access road down and under the twin highway bridges to Darby Creek. On the far side of the bridges, bear left along the creek for the Blue Route Trail, or head right (up the hill) for the Backwoods Trail. The Railroad Trail, along the roadbed of the old Newtown Square Branch of the Pennsylvania Railroad, is just a little farther up the hill. When you near the old timber trestle remains, the trail swings slightly right off the roadbed. At this point, go down and pass through the trestle remains, then turn right and climb back up the railbed embankment on the far side to continue on to Darby Creek. There you will have to descend down another steep hill to your left to reach the creek and return by the Blue Route Trail.
The trails south of Parkview Drive are more level. The paved Pink Trail passes between the open playing fields, while the unpaved Switchback Trail (aqua) leads away from them. The Southbrook Trail (orange) is basically level and has a macadam surface from Parkview Drive past the Dog Park to where the Switchback Trail joins it using large steps. It then continues as a dirt trail further into the woods. More adventurous hikers can press on beyond that using the dirt Woods Trail (purple), which is steep in places and leads all the way out to Darby Road just north of Marple Road.
To see a printable color map brochure of the Haverford Reserve Trails click here.