Biking the Battlefields

Each time I visit the Gettysburg National Military Park I learn something new. This Sunday morning, however, my intent was just to focus on the bike ride and scenery, and not try to read the signs or follow a narrative to understand how the battle unfolded. The day before the weather had been rainy and a bit miserable. The week before that, unbearably hot. The morning was perfect biking weather and all we wanted to do was to enjoy the lovely scenery of the rolling farmland and battlefield.

We started at the visitor’s center — with ample parking, it seemed like the ideal place to start. We turned left onto Rt 30, riding through the famous fences of Picketts Charge, then turned left again into the National Military Park. We rode along the monuments and cannon, enjoying the fresh morning sun. It was pretty early, so only the most dedicated tourists were driving along the lane.

Some more photos showing scenes of the ride will share the experience better than my words so …

Tip #1: The later in the day you ride, the more traffic you will encounter. Ride with care. Wear a bike helmet. Obey the rules of the road.

Tip #2: Admission to the park is free, although if you visit the visitor’s center, there’s a nominal fee.

Getting there: Gettysburg National Military Park is located in Adams County, Pennsylvania. The museum and visitor center is located at 1195 Baltimore Pike (Route 97) with a back entrance from the Taneytown Road (State Rt. 134). From North or South, follow US 15 to Gettysburg and watch for signs to direct you to the National Park Service Museum and Visitor Center. The signs are near the exit at Rt. 97. Go north on Route 97 and look for the visitor center entrance, which will be on your left at the stoplight. From East or West, drive into Gettysburg on US Rt. 30, turn South on Baltimore Street (Rt. 97), and follow signs to the entrance of the visitor center, which will be on your right at the stoplight.

Hours: The park is open daily from 6 am to 10 pm April 1 to October 31, and 6 am to 7 pm November 1 to March 31. Park hours are strictly enforced.


Read about other ways to experience this important battlefield:

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Updated July 2020