Biking the Ohio to Erie Trail - Columbus to Cleveland

Biking the Ohio to Erie Trail - Columbus to Cleveland

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Hi, I'm Sara Petyk with Noble invention Bike  Touring. Today I am starting on our second   video of the Ohio to Erie Trail. We are riding  out of Columbus towards Cleveland. In our first   video we rode from Cincinnati here to Columbus.  The Ohio to Erie Trail route north of Columbus is   a nice mix of surfaces. We are for the most part  on bike trails but we also do get to ride on some   miles of farm roads and secondary roads. We also  get to take a nice long time on the Ohio and Erie   Towpath Trail which is a crushed gravel trail.  We'll cover about 180 miles on this Cleveland to,  

or sorry, 180 miles on the Columbus to Cleveland  portion of the Ohio to Erie Trail. I do sometimes   get the question of which direction is better to  ride. It's generally believed that south to north   will more likely have a tailwind but it's very  changeable. You can't you can't say for sure there  

will be a tailwind just because you ride south to  north. Also with the elevation changes it's really   six of one, half dozen of the other. You're going  to be climbing and descending no matter which way   you go. So for my money I say whichever direction  makes the most sense for you logistically is   probably the best one to go. I think a lot of  people though do probably ride south to north.   Well I'm ready to get started on our Day 1  ride out of Columbus so why don't we start.

This is a great trailhead to keep in mind as  a rest stop because it actually has bathrooms,   water, and shade. So they've actually  done a really nice job with the park here   and have it on your list of places, once  you've gone through the Columbus area and   figured out all of your directions and  you're finally back on the bike trail,   you can take a moment here catch your breath and  then start back on the Ohio to Erie Trail north. I'm in the town square of Sunbury and the bike  route actually comes straight through the town   here. We also passed by the smaller town of  Galena. The bike trail doesn't go through  

Galena but you are just off of that and there is  a bike lane that can take you there. I wanted to   point out that both of these towns do have  multiple restaurants. They also have these   nice town square areas where you can find  some picnic tables and just some shade and   a place to rest if you need it. I didn't see  any public bathrooms or public water in these   two locations but I did want to point out that  there are good options here for both food and,   if you've packed your own food, a  place to sit and have your own lunch. I've arrived in Mount Vernon. Just before I  got to this trailhead I, the bike trail and I,  

went past the Ariel Foundation Park and if you  are new to this trail and if you like seeing art   installations I definitely recommend just taking  a really quick side trip to look at the art they   have there. There is also an observation tower if  you don't have a fear of heights you can walk all   the way up and get a nice view. But then just past  that park is where we are here at the Mount Vernon   trailhead. Behind me this building was built in  1905 and it was a train depot for the Cleveland,   Akron, and Columbus Railway. Today the Knox County  Visitor Center uses the indoor space. They also  

have bathrooms and water inside which you can use  during the regular office hours. On the outside   even if you're here outside of those hours there  are water fountains as well as some picnic tables   and benches and a bike fix-it station. We are  about 50 miles north of Columbus. So often riders   who are looking to have a daily mileage in that  40 to 50 range will stay overnight here. There are   plenty of restaurants and there's a hotel and  some other places to stay in Mount Vernon. We   have been riding on the, we've been riding on  the Heart of Ohio bike trail since Centerburg   and but here in Mount Vernon we are going to  switch onto the Kokosing Gap Trail. So we're   going to take the Kokosing Gap Trail out of Mount  Vernon and north to north towards Millersburg.

So that was the end of the Kokosing Gap Trail.  That trail ends in the small town of Danville.   At the end of the trail we take a few turns  through Danville until we reach the Mohican   Valley Trail. You see the very cute sign behind  me. We are also starting in the portion of the   Ohio to Erie route where you're going through  Amish country and these trails and roads you   will be sharing with horses um usually a horse and  buggy. Usually not a horse by, with just a rider,  

but and then also walkers, scooters, you know  all a variety of things. So a couple points   of horse and bike etiquette. If you are biking  and a horse is coming at you generally or almost   always you want to stop first. You want to make  eye contact with the rider or driver and verify  

that they're okay with you continuing. This  is the, one of the only areas where I would   say these horses and the drivers are so used  to being around vehicles, including cars,   it's very unlikely that they're going to have a  problem with you continuing on. Just get a feel   for the situation. The other direction would be  coming from in the same direction as a horse. I   can't imagine a situation where you want to ride  right up on a horse and no matter how well trained   that horse is it is going to not enjoy that  at all. So to be courteous you want to again  

get a sense of what's going on. On these trails  you're you're probably going to be fine to just   slow up a little bit give a lot of room. Start  making, getting on the opposite side of the road   well before you're towards the vehicle so that  when you are passing the horse you're not just   making the swerve then. But again if you can tell  what other trail users around you are doing or if   there's you know apparently no problem with you  passing, go ahead and do that. So that's just   a bit of horse and bike etiquette to prepare  you for this part of the Ohio to Erie route. Well that is one good reason to ride south  to north. That is a fantastic downhill on  

the Holmes County Trail. After you hit the  Bridge of Dreams there's a bit of an uphill   and then there's a super fun downhill all  the way here to Glenmont. In Glenmont the   bike trail changes to road and we're actually  on road for I think almost 7 miles between the   towns of Glenmont and Killbuck. So this next  section is probably the most heavy traffic,  

heavy road portion of the Ohio to Erie Trail.  Once we're in Killbuck we are back onto bike   trail however and that bike trail is going to  take us all the way to Millersburg and beyond. We made it to Millersburg and behind me is the  actual trailhead building. The town itself is   just up a hill, unfortunately, a short hill.  Millersburg is probably one of the more   well-known stops along the Ohio to Erie Trail.  The town is in the heart of Central Ohio's Amish   Country so it does serve a lot of the tourism  activities around Central Ohio. And so this is  

a popular destination both for cyclists and  just for tourists coming to visit the area.  We're about 40 miles outside of Columbus, no 40  miles outside of Mount Vernon, so this is another   good place to stop as an overnight there  are restaurants and hotel options in town. The Holmes County Trail ends in the small  town of Holmesville appropriately enough.  

After that you are on roads for quite a while.  This is a beautiful section of the Ohio to Erie   route. It is quite hilly, so you get uphills  you do get downhills as well. I think going   into that section it's a good idea just to know  that you should pace yourself so that you can   actually enjoy the whole of that part. Lots of  beautiful farms to see, just beautiful scenery,  

but it is kind of a change after being on  bike trail for a while. You are back then   onto bike trail just past the town of Dalton.  And pretty quickly after you get onto the bike   trail it becomes this crushed gravel. This is  the first crushed gravel we've seen coming from   south to north. So we're on this Sippo Valley  Trail into Massillon. And then at Massillon we   actually turn north and we start on canalway  on our way up towards Akron and Cleveland. We got onto the canal towpath in the  town of Massillon or Masalin or Masin,   however you want to pronounce it. It's a pretty  large city. It's about roughly 30 miles both from  

Millersburg and from Akron. So some folks do use  that as an overnight. There's a hotel there as   as well as multiple restaurants. There's also a  nice big bike shop there. Others would use it as   a lunch stop or just a nice rest stop. A little  bit further along the towpath is the smaller town   of Canal Fulton. This also is a good stop for  lunch or just a break. There's probably three  

different ice cream shops and a coffee shop and  I know there's a restaurant or two as well. So a   good place for us a stop and a little bit of a  rest before you continue on your way to Akron. The Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath trail which we  got on around Massillon does continue into Akron   and beyond. So Akron can be a good last stop  if you want to overnight or it's a good rest   area before you get into the Cuyahoga Valley  National Park. Just past Akron you're on that   crushed gravel towpath there's a little bit  of pavement but essentially you're on that   towpath almost to the edge of Cleveland. As  you approach Cleveland you're going to be  

on a series of bike trails. It does become  paved again. And you do want to have your   mapping available because there are a number  of trails and you do get off of the towpath at   one point and get on to some linking trails  if you want to to get straight down to the   lake and the official end of the Ohio and Erie  Towpath, sorry I knew I was going to do that,   the Ohio and Erie TRAIL route. So we're going  to continue on the towpath but as we get close   to Cleveland you do depart from just the edge  of the towpath and get onto link trails which   take you to the end of the Ohio and Erie Trail  route. So enjoy this next section of the route. Here we are at the edge of Lake Erie, at the  end of the Ohio to Erie Trail. In this video   we have covered the northern half from Columbus  all the way here to Cleveland. As you saw coming  

in there are a lot of little links and turns  that you need to be aware of. So it is really,   I don't want to say it's required to have a  digital map on the trail, but again it's just   really strongly recommended if you can. Or even  have something on your phone to follow. If not,   there are paper maps and I would definitely  research these sections coming into and out   of the cities. The Ohio to Erie Trail as  a whole is surprisingly beautiful which I,   which I expected to be beautiful, but I think what  surprises me is the changes that you see on the   entirety of the trail. You're obviously going  through the urban areas Cleveland Cincinnati,   Columbus. You're definitely going through farm  areas. You're going through Amish country. But   you're also going through bike trail and crushed  gravel and towpath and road. And it's not all flat  

so there's a lot of up and down. So it it actually  does give you quite a robust experience as a bike   tourer. Answers to some basic questions which  I've probably gone over in either this or the   other video but which I will reiterate now that  you may have in mind. I think any type of bike is  

going to be appropriate for this trail as a whole.  The portions where you are on road if there's a   certain type of bike that you like for dealing  with traffic that might make the decision for   you. There are services basically along the entire  length of the trail. That includes places to stay,   restaurants, bathrooms, water. And free water.  water fountains for the most part. The portion   from Mount Vernon to Millersburg has probably the  least amount of services. There's a convenience   store in Killbuck. So you probably want to have  food with you for that section. For the most part  

all of the other portions of the trail have plenty  of options. Always of course research ahead. So thank you so much for following along  with me on my ride along the Ohio and Erie   Trail. If you're interested in getting more  information on our self-guided bike tours   on this trail or just information on the  other bike touring services that we offer,   please visit us at  That's

2023-10-10 11:47

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