The Western Reserve Greenway is a 43-mile, mostly rural rail-trail that cuts a northsouth course from Ashtabula to Warren, Ohio. The greenway's start is only a few miles from Lake Erie, and a planned extension will bring it right to the shoreline. For now you can start at Herzog Rotary Park, where signs detail the importance of northeast Ohio in the Underground Railroad.
Heading south, you cross the historic King Bridge, a steel railroad trestle built in 1897 that now spans Clay Street. Ahead is Austinburg, with a trailhead and plenty of options for refreshments and nourishment. South of town you re-enter the trail's rural surroundings and enjoy the company of deer, beavers and a multitude of birds, including wild turkeys and waterfowl.
In the small town of Rock Creek the Rock Creek Trestle spans the river. The bridge features bump-outs that give a bird's-eye view of the river and scenery below.
When the trail picks up again, you sail beneath sheltering trees and past the tiny village of Orwell, with a trailhead located below a water tower. In North Bloomfield, at about mile 30, the Mosquito Lake wetlands area has a must-see observation deck. Take a break and marvel at the breadth of wildlifeparticularly birdlifefound here. Red-tailed hawks, marsh and sparrow hawks, and bald eagles have been spotted here.
The Stone Arch Bridge in Trumbull County is a true highlight of the Western Reserve Trail. To further explore this superb tribute to time and engineering, hit the road on the north side of the bridge for 0.25 mile and take in the magnificent side view of the bridge. Back on the trail you will come to the Sunside trailhead at State Route 305. The rail-trail continues a short distance beyond here to Champion Street north of Warren, but the best access is from this trailhead.
Parking and Trail Access
To start at Herzog Rotary Park trailhead, located on the west side of Woodman Avenue in Ashtabula Township, take State Route 20 to Woodman Avenue and turn south; go for 0.75 mile. The trailhead will be on the right-hand side.
The trailhead in Austinburg can be reached from Interstate 90 by taking Exit 223 for State Route 45 south. In approximately 1 mile, turn left and head east on State Route 307 for about 1,000 feet. The trailhead is on the left at the edge of town.
To reach the Sunside trailhead in Warren from State Route 45 in Warren, travel north to State Route 305. Turn right and head east on 305, then look for the trailhead on your left.