What to do in Tyler State Park

Before becoming a state park, the land was owned by Mr. and Mrs. George F. Tyler who purchased the land between 1919 and 1928. The park was acquired by "Project 70" funding and has been developed using funds from "Project 500," the Pennsylvania "Land and Water Conservation and Reclamation Act." This act has provided for the planning and development of many public outdoor recreation lands including Tyler State Park.

The park was officially opened on May 25, 1974 consisting of 1,711 acres of Bucks County. Park roads, trails, buildings and areas have been carefully combined with the original farm and woodland setting. The Neshaminy Creek zigzags its way through the park, dividing the land into several interesting sections. Tyler State Park is one of Pennsylvania's largest day use facilities. There are seven picnic areas throughout the area, each providing picnic tables and metal charcoal grills. Each picnic area is named and has one or two parking lots. Grass fields near picnic areas are suitable for softball, horseshoes, volleyball, kite flying and sunbathing. A network of multi-use trails weave throughout the park including over 10 miles of paved trails and 4 miles of gravel trails that are open for bicyclists. Picnic tables have been placed in key locations along the bicycle trails to provide rest stops for the hiker or bicycle rider.

Many of the equestrian trails were originally established and marked by Mr. Tyler who enjoyed riding. Parking for vehicles with horse trailers is provided in several locations.

Tyler State Park now offers a disc golf course. In addition, six special play areas have been designed and constructed for the younger visitors. Two of these are built to look like miniature farm buildings. Two others have rustic log "observation towers" and other climb-on structures. The Youth Conservation Corps, using recycled materials, built the other play areas.

Anglers may fish along the banks of the Neshaminy Creek or from a canoe. Canoeing enthusiasts may rent canoes at the park concession building from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

The park offers environmental education and interpretive programs which explore a wide variety of ecological, historical and environmental topics. School group programming and teacher workshops can be arranged. Scout, church, civic and private groups can also arrange for special programs.

The Spring Garden Mill, once an active grain and feed mill, is now leased to the Langhorne Players, Inc., a local theater group. The Players have developed the building into a small theater to provide a recreational and cultural attraction for the general public.

In the winter, ice skating, ice fishing, sledding, tobogganing, cross-country skiing are enjoyed through out the park.

Before becoming a state park, the land was owned by Mr. and Mrs. George F. Tyler who purchased the land between 1919 and 1928. Their first purchase was the Solly Farm, currently leased to the Hosteling International Organization at the north end of the park. The Solly House served as the Tyler's country home until the mansion was constructed. The mansion is now a part of the Bucks County Community College.

Old original stone dwellings in the park stand as fine examples of early farm dwellings of rural Pennsylvania. Some structures date back to the early 1700's. You may wish to look for the date stone (1775) on the house located by the bicycle trail north of the pedestrian causeway in the center of the park.

Private persons who lease the state-owned houses are currently maintaining the most significant of the historic farm dwellings.

The park was acquired by "Project 70" funding and has been developed using funds from "Project 500," the Pennsylvania "Land and Water Conservation and Reclamation Act." This act has provided for the planning and development of many public outdoor recreation lands including Tyler State Park.

The park was officially opened on May 25, 1974 consisting of 1,711 acres of Bucks County. Park roads, trails, buildings and areas have been carefully combined with the original farm and woodland setting. The Neshaminy Creek zigzags its way through the park, dividing the land into several interesting sections.

Recreation
Tyler State Park is one of Pennsylvania's largest day-use facilities. There are seven picnic areas throughout the area, each providing picnic tables and metal charcoal grills. Each picnic area is named and has one or two parking lots. Grass fields near picnic areas are suitable for softball, horseshoes, volleyball, kite flying and sunbathing.

A network of multi-use trails weaves throughout the park. There is even an exercise circle between Woodfield and Mill Dairy Trails, just west of the creek. Over 10 miles of paved trails and 4 miles of gravel trails are open for bicyclists. If you're riding a bicycle, note that nearly all of the trails on the west side of the creek are hilly. The bicycle trails each have names and are well marked at each intersection. Most of the bicycle trails are over eight feet wide, semi-smooth asphalt for good traction and designed for easy two-way travel. The asphalt trails are multi-use trails. Picnic tables have been placed in key locations along the bicycle trails to provide rest stops for the hiker or bicycle rider.

If you are on horseback, you can enjoy many miles of dirt trails located on both sides of Neshaminy Creek with the exception of the picnic area section of the park. Many of the equestrian trails were originally established and marked by Mr. Tyler who enjoyed riding. Trees along the trails he rode were marked with a strip of white paint. The more difficult trails to follow have been marked with short posts having a horseshoe design cut into the top of the post. Parking for vehicles with horse trailers is provided near number one lane, in the large parking lot across from the craft center. A second parking lot on PA Route 332 across from the Spring Garden Mill is provided on a space available basis. These two starting points will give you easy access to all of the equestrian trails.

The gravel hiking trails link each picnic area. If you want a longer hike you can cross over the Neshaminy Creek to the west side of the park. Most of the bicycle trails and equestrian trails are on the west side. Hikers are permitted on all of the trails. You are cautioned to stay alert for horseback riders when hiking on the equestrian trails.

The easiest access from one side of the Neshaminy Creek to the other is over the causeway crossing at the ford in the center of the park near the boathouse. Once you have crossed to the west side of the Neshaminy Creek you will find a variety of trails. Many points along the trails are high enough to provide excellent views of the park and surrounding countryside. You can take a short walk or a long hike covering many miles. Each starting point will give you a different perspective of the park.

Although this sport is new to Tyler State Park, Disc Golf has been formalized as a sport since the 1970's. Much like regular golf, the object is to complete each hole in as few strokes as possible. A golf disc or Frisbee is thrown from the tee toward a pole hole. One point is counted each time a throw is made. As a player progresses down the fairway, placing the lead foot on the spot the disc landed makes each shot. The hole is completed by having the disc make contact with the hole marker.

Six special play areas have been designed and constructed for the younger visitors. Two of these are built to look like miniature farm buildings. Two others have rustic log "observation towers" and other climb-on structures. The Youth Conservation Corps, using recycled materials, built the other play areas. Several field areas are suitable for softball, volleyball, badminton, horseshoes, etc.

Anglers may fish along the banks of the Neshaminy Creek or from a canoe. Warm water species include sunfish, black crappie, carp, smallmouth bass and other pan fish. The Neshaminy Creek is also the home of large snapping turtles, eels, frogs, water snakes and muskrats to name a few.

Canoeing enthusiasts may rent canoes at the park canoe concession building. Registered motorboats with electric motors only are permitted. Visitors may launch their own non-motorized watercraft providing they have a current state park watercraft launching permit, state park mooring permit or a current Pennsylvania boat registration. State park launch permits are available at the park office.

Concession operated boat rentals operate daily each week from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day, weather permitting.

The park offers environmental education and interpretive programs which explore a wide variety of ecological, historical and environmental topics. School group programming and teacher workshops can be arranged. Scout, church, civic and private groups can also arrange for special programs. Advanced scheduling for group programming is required. Programs are available from September through May.

The Spring Garden Mill, once an active grain and feed mill, is now leased to the Langhorne Players, Inc., a local theater group. The Players have developed the building into a small theater to provide a recreational and cultural attraction for the general public.

Hosteling International, Inc. leases two park dwellings known as the Solly House and the Solly Annex. Hostel service is provided for travelers on foot or on bicycles. The hostel is also available to groups for outdoor activities and retreats. Other similar hostels can be found at Nockamixon State Park, Bucks County; Pine Grove Furnace State Park, Cumberland County; Evansburg State Park, Montgomery County; Ohiopyle State Park, Fayette County; and at Marsh Creek State Park, Chester County.

In the winter, the creek often freezes and ice skating is permitted in a designated location near the boat house warming area. Ice fishing is permitted when the ice over the deepest channel is thick. Slopes within the park afford an opportunity for the winter park visitor to go sledding and tobogganing. C cross-country skiing can be enjoyed on the bicycle trails left unplowed. Much of the horse and hiking trails systems is also suitable for cross-country skiing.

Wheelchair accessible picnic tables, the boathouse restroom and parking spaces are designated for the use of visitors with disabilities.

Location
Tyler State Park is located in the southeastern area of the state. You can reach the park from Exits 27 and 28 off the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Exit 27: Follow PA Route 332 east from Willow Grove through Richboro traveling another couple miles to the park.

Exit 28: Follow U.S. Route 1 north to Interstate Highway 95. Follow I-95 north to the Newtown-Yardley Exit 30, then drive west on the four-lane bypass around Newtown. Park entrance is at intersection of Swamp Road and the four-lane bypass.

Climate
Pennsylvania generally has a moist climate with cold winters and warm summers. The Tyler State Park area has cold winter months with temperatures averaging above 28 degrees Fahrenheit (above -2 degrees Celsius). The area's average summer temperatures range above 74 degrees Fahrenheit (23 Celsius).

Address
101 Swamp Road
Newtown, PA 18940-1151

Phone: 215-968-2021

Email: tyler@dcnr.state.pa.us
  • Tyler State Park Travel Q&A

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