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family camping tour around Dayton/Xenia/YelSpr OH

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family camping tour around Dayton/Xenia/YelSpr OH

Old 06-06-15, 07:53 PM
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family camping tour around Dayton/Xenia/YelSpr OH

Looking to organize a family bike/camping tour around the Ohio bike trails hub. Have visited the area briefly, but one thing we have not found: a campground with good kid-friendly access to the bike trails. We'd like to find a good campground with immediate access to the Little Miami Scenic Trail. Our kids can bike pretty well, and we can rotate them from bike to tagalong and back when they need rest. The one thing we don't like to do with the kids is get off of the bike trails onto regular roads with cars and trucks. We can do a couple of hundred yards on a road with a wide shoulder (like between the trail and Young's Jersey Diary) but even that is a bit awkward with kids and we certainly don't want to take them for longer distances or on roads with no shoulder for any distance. So where is the best place to camp that gets us on and off the trails without using regular roads?
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Old 06-07-15, 05:56 AM
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1. Go to Google Maps.
2. Search "campgrounds near [insert name of town near the trail at issue]"
3. Pan out for wider search results.
4. Investigate campgrounds
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Old 06-08-15, 09:34 AM
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We have 2 campgrounds that work well via trail access. The first is connected to the trail, but the second requires about 2 miles of road riding. We have an 8yo riding on her own and a 4yo in a weehoo. The only reason this second option works is because the roads are relatively quiet due to limited access around them. We have our oldest lead when on the road. The bike pulling the weehoo goes second. And the solo adult rider is last. This way, the solo adult rider is the first bike that cars would meet. The rear solo rider can also plant themselves a foot into the road more than the other riders ahead which will help ensure cars slow down and pass plenty wide. Sometimes the rear solo rider(typically me) will pull a burley trailer converted for cargo hauling, if its a bigger/longer family camp. This also helps ensure drivers slow down(since they think a kid is in the trailer) and pass wide(since the trailer requires them to).

It isn't ideal, but having the 8yo lead helps a lot. She is confident but still hyper aware when riding in the lead, so she stays in a safe position.

Hopefully you guys can find something that will work for your situation.
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Old 06-08-15, 02:59 PM
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Here is a site for Greene County which lists several camping sites near the Little Miami trail.

Activities | Camping | Greene County Parks & Trails
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Old 06-08-15, 03:48 PM
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This may be out of your area, and it may not be useful for other reasons, but just in case it's worth looking into:

I biked the southern half of the Ohio to Erie trail last summer. I also had a difficult time scoping out campsites along the trail. In fact, I spent the night in someone's yard outside of Cincinnati, and then in another yard in London (although I do think there's a campground in/near London), and only stayed at an actual campground once, sort of.

Ceasar's Creek Campround outside of Waynesville is a few miles off of the the trail. Unfortunately the most direct way there involves route 73, which is not a pleasant road. I was told this, but I'm used to non-bikers assuming that main roads aren't safe when they often have beautiful shoulders. Apart from the wind from the occasional semi truck, it's often easy going. Route 73 was not like that. The road was just wide enough for a lane in each direction, had a tiny shoulder, and that shoulder was all rumble strip. Unpleasant and unsafe. But, closer to the trail than the main campground, there's an equestrian campground. I didn't realize it at the time, but you can access this campground using some nice, country roads for about 2.5 miles by exiting the trail at New Burlington road. I realized this the next day when I returned to the trail. Wish I had realized it the night before because it would have saved my troublesome route and would have allowed me to actually find the campground because then I'd have an answer to my question:

Is it okay to use the equestrian campground if you don't have a horse? I would think, as long you're not taking a spot from the equestrians, it wouldn't be an issue. I made a mistake that caused me to miss the campground. It would not be easily missed coming the other direction. In fact, it would not be easily missed if you knew for sure it was there. My problem is that I stopped looking. I found it easily enough in the morning, on my way back to the trail, but I never found out how they'd feel about bike-campers.
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Old 06-08-15, 04:39 PM
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John Bryan state park is a few miles off the main trail, but the roads between are pretty nice. I wouldn't have a concern riding with kids in a trail-a-bike on this road.
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