Leisurely Day - 12X26 - CycleBlaze

September 11, 2021

Leisurely Day

Before heading out today Laura and I chatted with a couple who had spent the night at the inn.  They had just completed the first day of a planned 8 day ride of the Ohio to Erie Trail that would take them from Cincinnati's riverfront to the shore of Lake Erie in Cleveland.  Gave them some suggestions based on my experience in 2018.

Today's ride focused on completing the Little Miami Scenic Trail.  With only 37 miles from Waynesville to Springfield it was a very leisurely 3 hour ride.  The trail was popular today with a few larger groups riding in memory of 9/11.  The pace of today's ride also gave me the opportunity to reflect.  9/11 was on a Tuesday.  I had been working from home and made a point of having the tv on to watch an interview on the Today Show.  When the first plane struck, I was convinced in was an accident, when the second plane stuck, I knew something terrible had happened.  When Laura returned from school she found me packing my travel bag.  I told her I was expecting I would be called to provide emergency behavioral health services and I wanted to be ready.  The call came the following day and I found myself in NYC on Thursday.  I will always remember the 2+ weeks I spent working with individuals and groups and consulting with corporate customers. 

Immediately upon heading out of Waynesville I was right back in the wooded corridor that has marked the Little Miami Trail.  It quickly dawned on me I had seen very little farmland yesterday but that all changed today.  The farmland would persist throughout most of today's ride.

Farmland for the better part of today's 37 miles.
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I also took some time along the trail to check out some artifacts of earlier times.  

Before rail trails there were railroads.
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And the railroads gave rise to business.
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As I indicated earlier, today was a fairly busy day on the trail.  A focal point of this activity was Xenia Station about 15 miles into the day.  Xenia serves as a hub for four distinct trials.

Xenia Station
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As soon as I left Xenia Station I found myself in downtown Xenia.  Wasn't sure how long this road ride section would be but was quickly surprised that after only 5-6 blocks I was back on the trail and almost as quickly back in the wooded corridor.

A few miles down the trail I came across something that reminded me of home...a covered bridge.  While I have certainly ridden through my fair share of covered bridges, this is the first time I've ridden under one.

Impressive covered bridge with cupola.
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Shortly after the covered bridge, I got my last glimpse of the Little Miami River.

Little Miami River.
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As I approached the outskirts of Springfield I wasn't sure how the city had approached incorporating the trail.  It is not uncommon for the trail to "disappear" and immediately transition into a road ride...sometimes well marked...sometimes, not so much.  A final pleasant surprise,  the trail continued right into Heritage Place where  I met Laura sitting on a bench enjoying a comfortable breeze.   She had just finished touring Frank Lloyd Wright's nearby Wescott House.  As usual, we packed the bike into the back of the truck and headed for the next trail a mere 450 miles away in Pennsylvania.  We decided to split the difference and overnight in Youngtown, Ohio and arrive in Wellsboro, Pennsylvania tomorrow for some sightseeing before  jumping back on the bike for Monday.

Today's ride: 37 miles (60 km)
Total: 346 miles (557 km)

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