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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Explore America: Inside Ohio's Beautiful Cuyahoga Valley National Park [Huff Post]


Memorial Day is upon us, which means that road trip season has arrived. AAA estimates that some 30.7 million people will drive to American destinations this year. A lot of these road warriors will end up driving through Ohio, a near inevitability for west-bound east coasters, and the smart ones will stop at one of the Midwest's few national parks to explore a patch of uncelebrated beauty.
Cuyahoga Valley National Park, which spans 33,000 acres along 22 miles of the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron, is the only national park in Ohio, but this national park offers something else a little unusual -- there's a historic railway that runs through it. The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad offers visitors a way to take in the area's scenic views, feel a connectedness to nature and see the topography many Native Americans and settlers once roamed.
In 1880, the first steam railroad took a trip down the Valley Railway to deliver coal from Canton to Cleveland along with other goods and farm produce. The historic rails are now owned by the National Park Service and Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad bills itself as one of the oldest, longest and most scenic tourist excursion railways in America. You can take the train ride through historic sites and imagine riding back to a simpler time as you see fox, deer, beavers and owls. This can be a great way to spend some of the weekend with the family at just $15 a ticket for the whole day and $10 for kids.
2012-05-18-CVRR.jpg

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