Escape the dreariness of winter and cure cabin fever in Pennsylvania's Americana Region. With a diverse range of activities and events, there's something for everyone to break free from the winter blues. Don't let the cold keep you away from experiencing all that Berks County has to offer! 


Man overlooks the water at blue marsh lake during winter

Hiking and Walking

What's great about hiking or walking outside during the winter? There aren't any bugs to bite you! Our local hiking trails deliver invigorating walks and beautiful views across Berks County. Choose from uphill challenges, wooded paths and open terrain in our parks, forests, historic sites, rec areas and the nearby Appalachian Trail. Some of the trails are dog friendly, and some, like Nolde ForestBlue Marsh, and South Mountain YMCA offer guided walks throughout the year. We even have some great spots to walk around and view public art. Learn more about great places to hike in Berks today.

A group of mountain bikers brave the snow to take in the views from a lookout on Neversink Mountain.

Berks Area Mountain Biking Association

Mountain Biking 

A drop in the temperature is no excuse to stay inside. Why not give mountain biking a try on the Greater Reading Trails System. The trails are open year-round and welcome riders of all skill levels. Thanks to the Berks Area Mountain Biking Association, our trails are well-marked, beautifully maintained, and even equipped with repair stations. The group invites interested cyclists to give this exhilarating sport a try. Learn more about local biking trails and BAMBA by visiting the embedded sites.

Cardinal Winter Bird Watching

Winter Bird Watching

Pennsylvania’s beautiful outdoor regions come with lots of fascinating wildlife. Even in the winter, when many animals go into hibernation, there are plenty of amazing birds to see! From cardinals to bluejays to chickadees, the variety of birds in this region is astonishingly wide. Many of these birds can be seen just about anywhere, from your own backyard to area parks.  However, there are some incredible spots across our region that provide a bird’s eye view of these incredible creatures, like Hawk Mountain SanctuaryFrench Creek State ParkBlue Marsh Recreation Center, and Lake Ontelaunee. Whether you’re experienced at birding or new to the pastime, you’ll find Berks County is a great place to enjoy this hobby. 




Ice & Spice Festival


7th Annual West Reading Ice N Spice Festival

The 7th Annual West Reading Ice N' Spice Festival returns for all to enjoy on January 26, 27 & 28. Ice sculptors will be at various locations along Penn Ave (blocks 400 - 700) during the times listed below. As you view the chilly creations, stop at local businesses and restaurants to take advantage of discounts and other specials offered during the event.




Snowshoeing Saturdays: January 27th (Weather Permitting)

Try out a pair of snowshoes and join Parks staff on an hour long walk down the Union Canal Trail. No prior experience necessary- bring your own snowshoes if you have them! If the conditions are not sufficient for snowshoeing, you can still rent snowshoes throughout the winter season if the weather permits: 

  • Snowshoes can only be lent out during regular park hours when terrain conditions have at least 4” of snow on the ground. Snowshoes must be used within County Parks (Stonecliffe, Berks Leisure, Gring’s Mill, Red Bridge, Heritage Center, Union Canal Trail, or Antietam Lake Park).


Ice Harvest


Ice Harvest: February 3rd 

The annual Ice Harvest at the Historic Dreibelbis Farm will include a demonstration of antique ice harvesting tools and (weather permitting) cutting and harvesting ice blocks from the ice pond. They will explain how ice was hauled to and loaded in the ice house.

Horse-drawn sleigh or wagon rides will be offered for a small fee. A bonfire, homemade soup, and hot chocolate will be available and the farm grounds and nature trail will be open to the public.

The event is free to the public and will be held rain or shine, with only blizzard conditions or pouring rain cancelling. If thin ice prevents walking on the pond, a demonstration of tools and techniques will still be held.