Became obvious weeks ago I wouldn’t get through West Virginia by mid November (when the weather in the Appalachians typically starts turning for the worse), so have been contemplating alternative routes to DC. Something else that’s made itself painfully clear is the rocket trike is not made for mountains, let along serious hills, even without all my gear loading it down. So I unfortunately won’t be profiling any mountaintop removal sites this trip.
The hazardous Kentucky roads I was on the past two days convinced me to seek out bike paths as much as possible the rest of the way to DC, making the Little Miami Scenic Trail – running from Cincinnati to Springfield – a no brainer. Goodbye, cars. Hello, Mama Nature. Was an absolutely gorgeous fall day for riding along the river and one of my favorite ride days of the entire trip. Made it 78 miles from Newport, KY before ending the day in the hip little town of Yellow Springs, OH. Along the way, Ohio Citizen Action called to thank me for posting the video criticizing the Rumpke landfill expansion in Cincinnati, so I briefed their canvass staff on the ride as I pedaled.
Stopped at the Little River Cafe right on the trail for a cold beer, before making tracks north in hopes of finding a campground near Yellow Springs. As I pulled out, a guy by the name of Tim Henderson walked up, saying he had just signed my petition on his phone. He called a friend (Parker Buckley), who called another friend (Mike Groeber), who not only offered me a place to sleep for the night, but rode 6 miles down the trail in the dark to meet me and escort me back to his house. Riding on bike paths at night is a whole different animal from riding on roads. As long as you know the trail (or are with someone who does) and have adequate lighting, there’s little more enjoyable than riding at night. When we arrived, Mike’s wife, Connie Crockett, wasted no time loading up our plates with wonderful pasta and salad. When you’re on a bike, there’s just nothing like being helped by fellow bikers. You guys are the best.
Felt good to get back into a groove. Knocked out 78 miles today.