Canal Fulton - Stoutdog - Historian Ohio Bicycle Adventure
Stoutdog couldn't make my first ride on the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath, so it was a solo trip. And the ride set the tone of the rest of my vacation - warm, sunny weather, good trail conditions, and something to see every mile.
I started south of Akron, near Vanderhoof Road, and was struck by how beautiful the towpath trail was:
I passed through the historic town of Clinton, where I purchased fluid and took photos:
Then down the gravel path to Canal Fulton. I rushed to make the last ride of the day for the canal boat, and just made it. The visitors center held my bike for me while I spent an hour going up and down the canal:
Dan and Prince, our 'motor':
The towpath surface became rougher as I went on. The rains this spring caused some washouts, and the trail surface had a messy 'patch' job. After riding further down the towpath I crossed the river and road and took a parallel trail into Crystal Springs hoping for better conditions:
I crossed the river back to the towpath on the High Bridge in Crystal Springs. This historic span is closed to motor vehicles. A week later I'd be floating a canoe under it.
I stopped at seventeen miles and more than 100 photos for the day, at Bridgeport Quarry trailhead.
Very pretty. For some reason I always had the impression that Ohio was just more great plains. It looks like I was wrong.
So was I. I found out the name "Akron" derives from the Greek word meaning "high place." When they built the canal through Akron they had to put in 15 locks in about a mile and a half, so great was the elevation change.