Mount Vernon, OH Birding Trails and Maps

434 Reviews

Looking for the best Birding trails around Mount Vernon?

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Activities
Length
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40 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

Alum Creek Greenway Trail

25.2 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Concrete

Big Walnut Trail

10.6 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Blackhand Gorge Trail

4.26 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Blacklick Creek Greenway Trail

17.8 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Dirt

Buckeye Scenic Trail

5.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Camp Chase Trail

15.9 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Canal Winchester Trail System

4.8 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Coshocton Three Rivers Bikeway

2.4 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Darby Creek Trail

7.8 mi
State: OH
Gravel

Downtown Connector Trail

1 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Fairfield Heritage Trail

9.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Foor Leisure Path

1.3 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Galena Brick Trail

1.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Genoa Trail

4 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Great American Rail-Trail

3743.9 mi
State: DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

Heart of Ohio Trail

15.7 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Ballast

Heartland Trail

3.4 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Hellbranch Trail

5.6 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Heritage Rail-Trail

6.1 mi
State: OH
Asphalt
Accordion

Holmes County Trail

23.1 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Hoover Scenic Trail

0.6 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Kokosing Gap Trail

13.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Marion Tallgrass Trail

12.4 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Grass

Meredith State Road Trail

1.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Mohican Valley Trail

4.8 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Muskingum Recreational Trail

4.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Ballast

Newark Trail

3.3 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Ohio Canal Greenway

2.7 mi
State: OH
Cinder, Grass, Gravel

Ohio to Erie Trail

271.9 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

Olentangy Trail

22.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Concrete

Richland B&O Trail

18.5 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Rocky Fork Trail

1.6 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Sandel Legacy Trail

0.6 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Scioto Greenway Trail

12.2 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Concrete

T. J. Evans Panhandle Trail

9.8 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

T. J. Evans Trail

14.3 mi
State: OH
Asphalt

Westerville B&W

23.9 mi
State: OH
Asphalt, Concrete

Zane's Landing Trail

2.9 mi
State: OH
Asphalt
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
The Alum Creek Greenway Trail takes you through a scenic landscape from Westerville through Columbus to Groveport, with easy access to adjoining neighborhoods and a multitude of public parks to enjoy....
OH 25.2 mi Asphalt, Concrete
The developing Big Walnut Trail follows its namesake creek through Columbus and its eastern suburbs of Westerville, Gahanna, and Whitehall. Several segments of the paved pathway are open, though...
OH 10.6 mi Asphalt
The Blackhand Gorge Trail, the only bike path in the Ohio nature preserve system, features some of the best scenery in the state. Perhaps this is to be expected from a trail that passes through a...
OH 4.26 mi Asphalt
The Blacklick Creek Greenway Trail runs interrupted for nearly 18 miles between Reynoldsburg and Groveport on the southeastern edge of Columbus. The trail parallels Blacklick Creek for the vast...
OH 17.8 mi Asphalt, Dirt
The Buckeye Scenic Trail, a recent addition to the expanding Licking County trail system, stretches roughly 6 miles from the northern reaches of Heath to Lakewood High School on US 40. In the north,...
OH 5.5 mi Asphalt
The Camp Chase Trail plays a role in two of Ohio’s most exciting trail projects: it is a key piece of the cross-state Ohio to Erie Trail and an integral part of the Central Ohio Greenways network...
OH 15.9 mi Asphalt
This nearly 5-mile trail system weaves throughout historic Canal Winchester, Ohio, a southern suburb of Columbus. The extensive network links residents with parks, businesses and the city’s high...
OH 4.8 mi Asphalt
The Coshocton Three Rivers Bikeway provides safe and direct access from the City of Coshocton to the Coshocton Lake Park Recreational Complex and historic Roscoe Village. Two crossings under US 36...
OH 2.4 mi Asphalt
The Darby Creek Trail is currently available in two disconnected segments that parallel Big Darby Creek, a State and National Scenic River on the western outskirts of Columbus. The northern 3.5...
OH 7.8 mi Gravel
Although the Downtown Connector Trail is short, just a mile through Mount Vernon, it's a key connector between the Kokosing Gap Trail, which heads east to Danville, and the Heart of Ohio Trail, which...
OH 1 mi Asphalt
Columbus’ Downtown Connector Trail provides a vital link between neighborhoods and schools on the city’s east side and the downtown area. On its east end, the paved pathway begins adjacent to I-670...
OH 5 mi Asphalt
The Fairfield Heritage Trail winds through and connects the community of Lancaster. It links a college, high school, junior high school and elementary school, as well as numerous parks and shopping...
OH 9.5 mi Asphalt
The Foor Leisure Path is a short, paved trail that links the northern edge of Groveport’s quaint residential core with the Blacklick Creek Greenway Trail. The connection allows Groveport residents to...
OH 1.3 mi Asphalt
The Galena Brick Trail follows a former rail bed from the Blackhawk golf course to Miller Park, which offers a small playground. Of historical significance is the nearby Galena Shale and Brick...
OH 1.5 mi Asphalt
The Genoa Trail runs between Northgate Way in Westerville and Plumb Road south of Galena, paralleling the east side of State Route 3. The trail is separated from the road by a nice corridor of trees,...
OH 4 mi Asphalt
The Great American Rail-Trail highlights some of the country’s most iconic landmarks, well-known geography and storied history across a 3,700-miles-plus route between Washington and Washington....
DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY 3743.9 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
True to its name, the Heart of Ohio Trail lies in the central part of the state, extending from Mount Vernon southwest to the Knox-Licking County line just south of Centerburg. Along its nearly 16...
OH 15.7 mi Asphalt, Ballast
The Heartland Trail is a developing rail-trail project that will one day connect the northeastern Ohio communities of Orrville and Clinton. A mile of the pathway is already on the ground in Orrville,...
OH 3.4 mi Asphalt
The Hellbranch Trail offers a paved route of just over 5 miles in the northwestern Columbus suburb of Hilliard. The pathway connects residential neighborhoods and schools with recreational parks, a...
OH 5.6 mi Asphalt
More than half of the smooth, flat, 6.1-mile Heritage Rail-Trail has a parallel 4-mile horse trail. The equestrian corridor starts at Hayden Run Road and continues northwest to the Cemetery Pike...
OH 6.1 mi Asphalt
Accordion
Holmes County, located in northeastern Ohio, is the heart of the state’s Amish country. Visitors to this rural enclave will find meandering country roads and bucolic natural areas, as well as the...
OH 23.1 mi Asphalt
The Hoover Scenic Trail continues north from the paved Genoa Trail to Weise Road just south of Galena. The trail follows the northwestern shoreline of the sprawling Hoover Reservoir within a scenic...
OH 0.6 mi Asphalt
The Kokosing Gap Trail delights visitors with its rich railroad history, which is on display throughout the paved route. Once the corridor of the Pennsylvania Railroad, the rail-trail now connects the...
OH 13.5 mi Asphalt
The Loudonville Pedestrian and Bicycle Pathway is nestled in a scenic valley in a small town nicknamed the "Canoe Capital of Ohio." The trail begins in downtown Loudonville, crosses the Blackfork...
OH 1.5 mi Asphalt
The Marion Tallgrass Trail is a developing rail-trail which will extend from Marion westward on a former Erie Lackawanna Railway corridor. The line was part of the Erie Lackawanna’s main line that...
OH 12.4 mi Asphalt, Grass
The Meredith State Road Trail is a part of the Ohio to Erie Trail in Centerburg, Ohio. From Meredith State Road, the paved trail heads northeast within a wooded corridor towards the border between...
OH 1.5 mi Asphalt
The Mohican Valley Trail runs for nearly 5 miles along a former right-of-way of the old Penn Central Railroad on the eastern edge of Knox County, between Brinkhaven and Danville. The trail features...
OH 4.8 mi Asphalt
The Muskingum Recreation Trail runs for 4.5 miles along a ballast trail between Main Street in Dresden and Rock Cut Road. The trail offers views of the Muskingum River, with impressive rock...
OH 4.5 mi Asphalt, Ballast
Beginning at a connection with the T. J. Evans Trail, this 3-mile paved pathway heads through Newark's western neighborhoods along the scenic Raccoon Creek to Flory Park. For much of the route, the...
OH 3.3 mi Asphalt
The Ohio Canal Greenway extends south from Hebron on an old Penn Central Railroad right-of-way. Farm fields border the trail on the west, while remnants of the historic Ohio and Erie Canal are to the...
OH 2.7 mi Cinder, Grass, Gravel
The Ohio to Erie Trail is a colossal project, not just for the state of Ohio but also nationally. Dreamed up more than 25 years ago, this route will eventually connect the Ohio River in Cincinnati to...
OH 271.9 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
For visitors and locals alike, the Olentangy Trail is the ideal way to explore Columbus, the dynamic capital of Ohio, as well as the surrounding communities. Named after the eponymous river it follows...
OH 22.5 mi Asphalt, Concrete
Traveling just over 18 miles through some of the most scenic areas of the Buckeye State, the Richland B&O Trail is an ideal way to immerse yourself in the region. Built partially as a result of the...
OH 18.5 mi Asphalt
The Rocky Fork Trail is a developing pathway in Westerville and New Albany, which are northeastern suburbs of Columbus. The paved trail is currently available in five disconnected segments. The...
OH 1.6 mi Asphalt
The Village of Sunbury makes its own contribution to the expansive Ohio-to-Erie Trail with the Sandel Legacy Trail. The trailhead on Columbus and Vernon Street offers an early treat: a model railroad...
OH 0.6 mi Asphalt
The Scioto Greenway Trail is an urban greenway at its best. A segment of the Central Ohio Greenways trail network that covers more than 120 miles throughout the state, the 12.2-mile multiuse trail...
OH 12.2 mi Asphalt, Concrete
Cruising along on the nearly 10-mile T. J. Evans Panhandle Trail (known locally as the Panhandle Trail), you might be surprised to encounter a massive basket seemingly plunked down by a giant. In...
OH 9.8 mi Asphalt
Located in central Ohio, the 14-mile T. J. Evans Trail is a popular route, attracting both locals and visitors. With its tree-covered canopy that provides respite from the sun on hot summer days,...
OH 14.3 mi Asphalt
The Westerville B&W (Bike & Walk Route) is an extensive system of paved multi-use paths throughout the Columbus suburb, stretching from Hoover Reservoir on the east to as far west as Worthington Road....
OH 23.9 mi Asphalt, Concrete
The Zane's Landing Trail—also known as the Zanesville Riverfront Bike Path—extends north from downtown Zanesville on a former railroad corridor wedged between the Muskingum River and an active rail...
OH 2.9 mi Asphalt

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Trails by activity

Recent Trail Reviews

Ohio to Erie Trail

The Ohio to Erie Trail Has the Potential to be One of America's Great Trails

November, 2019 by orangedoug

I've ridden the Ohio to Erie Trail (OTET) three times; first in July of 2013, again in May 2016, and most recently in October of 2019. It is interesting to note the progress that has been made in filling in the on-road gaps in the trail between each ride. However, it is frustrating to witness the glacial pace at which this trail is being completed.

Currently, the largest on-road gaps in the OTET exist between the end of the Sippo Valley Trail in Dalton and the beginning of the Holmes County Trail in Fredericksburg; between Killbuck and Glenmont on the Holmes County Trail, and between the end of the Heart of Ohio Trail southwest of Centerburg and the beginning of the Sandel Legacy Trail in Sunbury. There are a few smaller gaps in the OTET among which include, the bike lane in the Ohio River Trail in Cincinnati, the missing bridge over Little Miami River at the end of the Little Miami Scenic Trail needed to connect to the Lunken Airport Bike Path and a less than 1 mile gap between the Prairie Grass Trail and the Roberts Pass Trail in London.

The Ohio to Erie Trail is a paved trail except for the portion of the Ohio & Erie Towpath Trail that runs through northeast Ohio's Cuyahoga Valley National Park. It is unlikely that the National Park Service will pave this portion of the trail due to the canal's historical significance in developing the Ohio territory and helping to expand our nation from the original 13 colonies.

This trail links the three C's of Ohio -- Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. These are Ohio's 3 largest cities. In between you will encounter a variety of cities and towns; rivers, wetlands, and forests; industrial, commercial, and agricultural areas; and different types of topographies. This variety makes the Ohio to Erie Trail unique when compared to the nation's other long-distance trails.

It is important to understand that the OTET is still a work in progress. While some locations have embraced being a part of the trail, others seem to have completely ignored it. Communities that embrace the trail offer bike friendly establishments whether they be bike shops, hotels, Bnb's, restaurants, or trailheads. There just are not enough of them. The state of Ohio should be looking into promoting such businesses along the trail. One thing that is certainly needed are more official, recognized campsites along the trail. Whereas riders of C&O/GAP Trail, or Missouri's Katy Trail can expect to see a campsite roughly every 8 to 12 miles, the OTET has some areas where such campsites are 60 miles apart. Such distances don't make the trail appealing those that would prefer to camp. It also doesn't give riders much wiggle room in their itineraries to explore around the trail or deal with the unexpected such as a flat tire. Perhaps more campsites and other amenities will become a priority once the trail is fully completed.

My complaints are not intended to be a trashing of this trail but rather constructive criticism designed to help improve this into one of America's great trails. With the Rails to Trails Conservancy designating much of the OTET as part of its route for the Great American Rail-Trail through Ohio, I'm hoping that improvement and completion of the trail will become more of a state priority. If you are considering riding the Ohio to Erie Trail, don't hesitate. It is worth every pedal stroke.

Camp Chase Trail

A Nice Trail Where Towns Become More Spread Out

November, 2019 by orangedoug

The Camp Chase Trail runs along an active/semi-active rail line. For the most part the trail is straight as an arrow. The trail itself does tend to flip-flop sides of the tracks several times as it heads southwest toward London, Ohio. It undulates beside the tracks sometimes running above and sometimes below the track level. The asphalt trail surface is in good shape and is fairly wide. When I reached Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, I had to turn onto Darby Creek Drive and ride up to the park entrance and ride the park's roadway to reach the trail once again. This was disappointing because I knew that construction had started on completing the trail through the park, but unfortunately, it was not yet completed when I rode through at the start of October. For those bikers doing a northbound Ohio to Erie Trail ride this construction will eliminate a steep climb on the park's roadway coming up from the banks of Darby Creek. The new trail looks to diminish the slope of that climb.

The Camp Chase Trail is a nice trail, but I want to note two things. First, as you ride out of the North Hilltop neighborhood where this trail starts, the area surrounding the trail will open up. You will not be riding through a tunnel of trees any longer. You will definitely need sunscreen on sunny days. In addition, in all likelihood you will have to face a headwind, particularly if you are riding westbound on this trail. After leaving the Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park you are surrounded by farmland almost the entire way until you reach London, Ohio. There is very little in the way to stop the wind coming at you. If you are traveling west on this trail keep that in mind. Secondly, make sure you have an adequate supply of water if traveling between Columbus and London. Towns and commercial areas are not nearly as close together as they are in Columbus. It was 95 degrees the day I rode from Columbus to London. Anytime I approached a small town or commercial area I double checked the levels of my water bottles and filled them up if I was at or below half of the 3 bottles total capacity. You probably don't need to be as vigilant as that on cooler days, but on really hot days I think it would be prudent.

Scioto Greenway Trail

The Western End of the Trail is Not as Scenic as the Downtown Portion

November, 2019 by orangedoug

I rode the Scioto Greenway Trail as part of my southbound cross-state ride on the Ohio to Erie Trail route during early October. I rode this trail from The North Bank Park Pavilion to the Hilltop Connector Spur (Trail?) where I connected with McKinley Avenue. The Scioto Greenway Trail is similar to the Alum Creek Trail in the fact that it follows the banks of the river it is named for. In my opinion, the Scioto Greenway is not as nice a trail as the Alum Creek Trail. It is not as tree covered as the Alum Creek Trail, but you don't see as much of the river because of the heavy brush between the trail and the river. The trail also tends to rise and fall more than the Alum Creek Trail. It's definitely a bit like a kiddie roller coaster you might find at an amusement park. Riding away from downtown you don't get to see much of the city skyline, either. When I rode the OTET route back in 2013 you were routed from the Olentangy River Trail to the Scioto River Greenway and headed east until you reached Broad Street and then rode out to Battelle Darby Creek Metropark where you would pick up the Camp Chase Trail. Going this way gave you spectacular views of the downtown Columbus skyline and the Scioto River as the brush is better maintained along the river downtown. However, the current route is far safer because it takes you off a busy thoroughfare and the Camp Chase Trail has been extended toward the Scioto Trail. There is a just a short 0.6 mile on-road connection between the trails.

In all fairness to the Scioto Greenway Trail, I probably will need to return and ride the entire length of this trail, especially along the lower part of the river, to see if riding the entire length of the trail would change my feelings about this trail. When looking at the trail map, you can see that the trail in the areas of Uptown, German Village and Brewery Districts run through metroparks. I'm sure that means that the trail in these areas is much more scenic.

Accordion

Downtown Connector Trail (Columbus)

The Name of This Trail Says it All

November, 2019 by orangedoug

I rode this trail as part of a southbound ride on the Ohio to Erie Trail route in early October. I turned off of the Alum Creek Greenway Trail before passing under I-670 and rode the Downtown Connector Trail through downtown Columbus. This was once called the I-670 Downtown Connector, or the I-670 Trail in case you have older maps. The Downtown Connector is just that; a trail that connects the Alum Creek Trail to Downtown Columbus and eventually to the Scioto Greenway Trail. About half of its length runs along I-670 West, the rest of it is mostly a glorified sidewalk into downtown Columbus, Ohio. It does get interesting when it passes through Columbus’s Arena District where there are lots of restaurants, stores, and bars. The Arena District gets very crowded with pedestrians during lunchtime hours on sunny days when the weather is nice and fairly warm. Expect to go slow in the Arena District due to the crowds and be prepared to stop for the safety of others.

Alum Creek Greenway Trail

Can't Say Enough Positive Things About This Trail

November, 2019 by orangedoug

I rode this trail in early October as part of a southbound ride from Cleveland to Cincinnati on the Ohio to Erie Trail route. The Alum Creek Trail is an absolutely beautiful trail that follows and crosses Alum Creek numerous times on architecturally interesting bridges. It is a well shaded trail, that I truly appreciated on a day when the temperatures rose to the mid-90's. I bet that it is even more spectacular when the leaves on the trees hit their peak Fall color. I'm not one to stealth camp, but the woods along the trail were certainly thick enough that you probably would have no problem finding a place to make camp without anyone finding you if you didn't want them to. I rode from Schrock Road in Westerville to the Downtown Connector Trail that runs along I-670. The Alum Creek Greenway Trail does continue further along the Alum Creek south of I-670.

The Alum Creek Trail is now the preferred route through Columbus on the Ohio to Erie Trail. However, it is further east than the older OTET routes through Columbus that I have ridden in the past. It seems that previous OTET routes cut more southwest through Columbus where the Alum Creek Greenway travels almost due south much further east than those previous OTET routes. If you are looking for an alternative route through Columbus consider combining the Westerville B&W, Schrock Road bike lanes, and the Olentangy Trail. I think you'd get through Columbus faster using this alternative route.

Westerville B&W

A Great Network of Trails Serving the City of Westerville

November, 2019 by orangedoug

The Westerville B&W is more a network of trails rather than one single trail. They are not necessarily all rail-trails, though the Ohio to Erie Trail (OTET) in this trail system certainly seems like one because of how straight it was and how gradual the changes in elevation were. I rode just two of the trail routes in this network: The Ohio to Erie Trail (The Towers Trail on some maps) and the County Line/Schrock Trail. I rode the Ohio to Erie Trail south from Maxtown Road where the Genoa Trail ended, to County Line Road where I crossed over the street on a bridge and then circled back to pick up the County Line/Schrock Trail. I headed west on the County Line/Schrock Trail in order to get closer to the Polaris area where my hotel for the evening was located. The County Line/Schrock Trail definitely is not a rail-trail as the it rises and falls as it runs parallel to County Line Road. The ascents and descents were not too bad but they were not railroad grade hills. As I rode these trails I was struck by how wide they were, and how well they seemed to fit in with local infrastructure. Part of me thinks that one reason for the many wide trails in this network was that they were built as the city transitioned from a farm community to a Columbus suburb before many of the buildings and homes in the area were built. Or perhaps the community had a visionary City Council and Mayor that knew that these trails were something that a growing community would want to attract new residents and pushed for their construction despite the cost and barriers that had to be overcome.

The next day I rode the same trail routes out of town. I rode south on the Ohio to Erie Trail until I reached the Westerville Bike Depot. The Bike Depot was an interesting place to stop. It has a very clean and awesome display of now and then pictures of Westerville. There are water fountains, bike racks, rest rooms, lockers, a picnic table, and a fireplace. It is located behind the Westerville Public Library in Hanby Park. The southbound OTET route in Westerville is well signed and easy to follow. You follow the Ohio to Erie Trail south until you reach Schrock Road, then follow the bike lane on Schrock which leads you to the Alum Creek Trail.

I plan to come back to Westerville to check out the rest of the trails in this network.

Genoa Trail

Another Short Connector In Ohio's Ohio to Erie Trail Route

November, 2019 by orangedoug

The Genoa Trail is a short trail that serves as a connector between other trails in the Ohio to Erie Trail route. The trail connects to the Hoover Scenic Trail if you are traveling north, and the Westerville B&W (Bike & Walk) if heading south.

This trail is a pretty flat, pretty straight, 4 mile rail-trail that runs through Genoa Township, north of Westerville, Ohio. The trail parallels N. State Road (OH-3) for most of it's length. It passes by the Char-Mar Ridge Preserve and Park on it's northern end and finishes on its southern end by half-circling Northgate Plaza and the Home Depot Store on Maxtown Road in Westerville. Even though the trail is close to OH-3 you travel through a tunnel of trees for much of the 4 miles of the trail. It only really loses the tree cover when you approach Northgate Plaza.

Hoover Scenic Trail

A Short Connecting Trail in the Ohio to Erie Trail Route Across Ohio

November, 2019 by orangedoug

The Hoover Scenic Trail is what I consider a short connecting trail in the Ohio to Erie Trail route. Essentially, it's purpose is to connect the Galena Brick Trail with the Genoa Trail just north of Westerville, Ohio. The reason this trail exists is because the actual railroad right of way that could connect the Galena Brick Trail directly to the Genoa Trail runs through the Blackhawk Country Club. In all likelihood the country club doesn't want bikers and pedestrians on their private golf property and there are probably liability insurance concerns over pedestrians and cyclists getting hit by golf balls. A short half mile on-road route south of the Galena Brick Trail connects to the Hoover Scenic Trail by looping around the Country Club. The Hoover Scenic Trail then completes the job by bringing the traveler back to the Genoa Trail which is where they would have been if the trail could have gone through the golf course.

The trail itself is in good shape. It travels along the Hoover Reservoir for a bit and then it turns west and up and over the Old 3C Highway (a fairly busy road) by way of a trail bridge. After crossing Old 3C the trail descends back down to Plumb Road where the trail ends. From here a southbound Ohio to Erie Trail rider would turn right and ride along Plumb road until you reached the Genoa Trail on the left side of Plumb Road. The total distance you travel on the Hoover Scenic Trail is 0.8 miles.

Galena Brick Trail

Trail Expansion Closes the Gap between Galena and Sunbury

October, 2019 by orangedoug

I recently rode this trail as part of a southbound trek on the Ohio to Erie Trail (OTET) route. This rail trail located in Galena, OH was 0.8 miles long but a new extension northeastward to the Sandel Legacy Trail has added another 2 miles. In addition, there is a trail loop in Galena's Miller Park, which I feel doesn't add much to the the OTET route, so if you are riding the across Ohio, skip this loop.

The surface of the trail is asphalt and is generally in good shape. The worst wear in the trail surface occurs in the trail loop in Miller Park. The part of the trail which is really part of the OTET Route is in good shape. To connect to the next southbound OTET trail in the cross-state route, the Hoover Scenic Trail, there is about a half mile of road riding. However, this on-road ride is pretty protected. You have sharrow markings on Dustin Road. When you reach W. Columbus St./S. Old 3C Rd. you get bike lanes to travel in, and when you turn left into Wiese Road you are riding an old road which basically only serves as a driveway for one house. Once you pass this house you are on the Hoover Scenic Trail.

Sandel Legacy Trail

Not Yet Ready For Prime Time

October, 2019 by orangedoug

The Sandel Legacy Trail located in Sunbury, OH currently exists in two parts which total only 0.6 miles in length. I rode what currently exists of this trail when I rode across Ohio on the Ohio to Erie Trail route.

I rode the southwest section of the Sandel Legacy Trail as it was closer to the next trail leading to Columbus, the Galena Brick Trail. There is a whole depot-like area within Sunbury, just south of the Delaware County Courthouse Square, where the old rail line ran through town. The two segments of this trail seem to be on either side of this depot area. You might actually be able to ride the area between them, but I did not attempt to do so. When I left Cleveland to ride across Ohio, I knew that construction was going on that was going to connect the southwestern section of the Sandel Legacy Trail with the Galena Brick Trail. It was my hope that this construction would have been completed between the two trails before I reached Sunbury, but I had no such luck. I guess that extension of the Galena Brick Trail will have to wait until my next OTET trip.

As far as the Sandel Legacy Trail goes. the asphalt surface is in great shape because it is new, and probably because so few people presently ride this trail. Once the connection is made to the Galena Brick Trail that will change. First of all, there is quite a bit of home development going on along this trail extension. You can see connecting trails already going into these new home communities. Secondly, the combined trails will give local residents a longer trail to ride and a safer connection to the trails that lead into Columbus. I believe this will also create a greater demand for the Sandel Legacy trail to be extended northeast through Sunbury and then further north to the Meredith State Road Trail, thus closing the North Columbus Trail Gap entirely.

At present the highlights of the the Sandel Legacy trail are the rail bridge over South Columbus Street, the Sunbury Station/Depot building (home of the Delaware County Model Railroad Group), tree identification markers along the trail that point out various tree species that occur along the trail. When the trail gets extended to the north on the other side of the depot area, the trail will cross over the Big Walnut Creek on a fairly large rail bridge.

Meredith State Road Trail

An Isolated Trail Awaiting to be Connected to Others

October, 2019 by orangedoug

The Meredith State Road Trail is a new, isolated section of the Ohio to Erie Trail (OTET). At present it does not have a trailhead or any parking along its length. On my recent southbound ride on the Ohio to Erie Trail, I had to road ride for several miles from the end of the Heart of Ohio Trail in order to connect to and ride this trail. Because the trail is new and is not directly connected to any other part of the OTET route, the trail signs posted on the trail do not indicate the milage to other destinations on the Ohio to Erie Trail. This is a nice, flat, smooth trail that will be a great trail addition to the Ohio to Erie Trail when it is connected to other nearby trails. This 1.5 mile trail will help to close the current on-road gap between trails in the area north of Columbus, Ohio.

Heart of Ohio Trail

A Interesting Trail That Keeps Getting Better

October, 2019 by orangedoug

The Heart of Ohio Trail is a 15.7 mile trail that goes from Mount Vernon, Ohio and travels southwest through the towns of Mount Liberty and Centerburg before ending at Huffman Road about 2 miles southwest of Centerburg.

The trail pretty much parallels US-36 from Mount Vernon to Sunbury. It is paved and again is a typical rail-trail in terms of how hills are smoothed out into a manageable gradient. While this trail, to me, lacks the same level of natural beauty that the Holmes County and Kokosing Gap Trails have, it makes up for that with some very interesting sights along the way.

The first of those sites is the Ariel-Foundation Park right in Mount Vernon, Ohio. This park starts at Mount Vernon Station, right after you cross S. Main Street and continues through the park which is built on the site of an old Pittsburgh Paint & Glass (PPG) factory. The park features, some hiking trails, sculptures, an event center/concert venue, some remanent buildings from the PPG days, and probably the most interesting feature is the observation deck that is built around the 280 foot reinforced concrete chimney that was once part of the plant. If you climb to the top you can overlook the entire park, the city of Mount Vernon, and look for miles in any direction.

The second interesting site is drag racing strip several miles beyond Ariel-Foundation Park. I have ridden past the strip when there were still some cars and racing teams at the track, but I have yet to witness any racing going on as I passed by.

As you come into Centerburg, you have to cross over US-36. This is a busy road, so even though the rail-line crossed this road at an angle, they have re-routed the crossing so it is perpendicular to the roadway, and have placed a push button flashing signal to alert drivers of someone crossing. almost immediately after crossing US-36 For southbound travelers, almost immediately after crossing US-36, you come upon a marker stating you have just reached the highest point on the Heart of Ohio Trail. The trail then descends into Centerburg passing by Hillair Township Park/Memorial Park until you come to N. Clayton Street. Here you will find see the grain elevators and a pizza place called Pizza Burg. There are other places to eat in town if you chose to turn left and head to the center of town.

The Heart of Ohio Trail now gets you through Centerburg completely, and while you still will need to quite a bit of road riding, there are now pieces of trail between Centerburg and the Hoover Scenic Trail, south of Sunbury, that are in place and waiting to be connected to other nearby trails with construction going on right now. I think 3 years from now there will absolutely no road riding between Mt. Vernon and Columbus.

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