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Monday, August 27, 2007

Miami Valley Recreational Trail Ride Report - UPDATED

The Miami Valley Trail is a great ride!

My friend Ashley from Wheeling, and two friends from Columbus, Bill and Cher, rode the trail from Springfield to Milford.

I like to complain a lot, so here is my complaint. The trail in Springfield combines a few sections of trail and city streets. The first trail section after leaving the was littered with glass. We were dodging broken bottles the entire length. I contacted the director of the Heritage Center of Clark County who was going to see if anything could be done to rectify the situation.

Once we left Springfield the trail became rural. We crossed a lot of east-west roads as we headed south. The entire path is paved, and we ran into only a few sections that were uneven or had bumps. They take care of roots by cutting out the roots and replacing the asphalt.

The first town we stopped at was Yellow Springs, famous for the now doomed Antioch College. I wanted to see the Yellow Springs, so I forced the group to stop at the Glen Helen nature preserve. We stumbled down the stone steps into the valley in search of the elusive yellow springs. After a short trek we decided to give up and headed back up to the trail and resume the ride. We also stopped here on the return trip for lunch. I don't recall the restaurant, but I will update this post if I can.

Xenia is the hub of all the trails in the area. Be careful when traveling through Xenia. The path is on the streets for a bit and the hub can be confusing with the trails heading off in all directions.

Spring Valley

- Public restrooms are available and The Corwin Peddler (restaurant, tea room, ice cream parlor, bike / roller blade) We stopped on the return trip for water and a rest.

Oregonia - The Little River Cafe We stopped here for lunch at the 40 mile mark. The food was OK. I had a sandwich and fries.

Morrow
A little park and a small downtown with an ice cream shop. We stopped on the return trip on Sunday for a break in the park.

Loveland
Pick up point for the numerous canoe liveries on the river. The trail runs directly through town and the businesses have taken advantage. Coffee shops, restaurants and other businesses were open and accessible. We stopped for coffee.

Camp Dennison
The Schoolhouse Restaurant. We stopped for dinner here. There is a huge tree out front where we parked our bikes. Immediately after we sat down to eat the clouds opened up with a torrential downpour. Dinner was great. The restaurant is family style. Each person orders an entree and the sides are family style on a lazy susan. Inevitably I knocked over Cher's wine glass when I was spinning the food around.

Milford
The trail keeps going for another four miles to a golf facility. They are supposed to connect it with downtown Cincinnati t some point. We turned off at the trailhead and headed east through the city streets toward the beltway. We rode through an industrial/business park and ended up at the Homewood Suites. The hotel was nice, large rooms and breakfast in the morning. We were able to take our bikes up to our rooms for safe keeping.

Odds and Ends
The trail is home to several memorials that stand out from the ordinary. Morrow has a gravestone in the town park for Jessica Lundsford. When you pass under the I-71 bridge that crosses the river a makeshift memorial stands for a man who committed suicide by jumping from the bridge. And at one of the road crossings there is a sign with the sage advice to "Look and Live," for someone who died when they crossed the road without looking first.

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