A bike ride can lead to adventure
There’s something about hopping on a bike, pushing each foot to the pedal and moving against gravity.
It isn’t about how fast you go, although some riders think they’re trying out for the Tour de France.
When my 11-year-old son and I went out the other day, we saw a couple of would-be professional racers trying to whiz by us – so undetected that we didn’t hear the speedsters until they were almost upon us.
That didn’t deter our ride that day, a ride I’m sure my son didn’t expect to go as far as it did.
The two of us had our respective mountain bikes, one obviously newer than the other. Mine might be 20 years old, but it’s American made.
The Mill Creek MetroParks Bikeway starts at Western Reserve Road, south of the Canfield Fairgrounds, but the two of us hopped on near the MetroParks farm across from the Fairgrounds – not knowing what was in store for the two of us except crossings a couple of roadways, including Route 224.
The Bikeway is flat, with a couple of inclines and downhill runs – not too large either way. The trees almost overlap each other at most points, providing shade and a pleasant ride on the asphalt trail.
Riding along you see the wildlife crossing the trail or flying overhead. My son counted 11 rabbits scampering in front of our path. As we approached the Kirk Road stop, it seemed like we were coming into a train station. This pathway was originally railroad tracks built in the 1860s, serving the Erie Railroad Company. The former rail line went between Cleveland and Pittsburgh.
The path, which is part of the Western Reserve Greenway Bike Trail, eventually wants to span from Lake Erie in Ashtabula to the Ohio River. There also are paths in Trumbull, Ashtabula and Columbiana Counties as well. Now they just need to all link together, like the way Mahoning connects to Trumbull County.
After a quick stop at Kirk Road, we headed up the way and eventually came upon a bridge spanning across Mahoning Avenue. The path led us to an incline. Since this was the first time both of us came to the apex of the bridge, we decided a couple of pictures, more like selfies, were in order.
The ride down off the bridge was quite refreshing, breeze blowing in our faces and through the holes in our bike helmets.
We made it past the Austintown Youth Soccer Fields near state Route 46 exit off I-80. As you go through the underpass of I-80, there is a concrete tunnel leading its way toward Trumbull County. The quick burst of darkness gave us a couple of exhilarating moments along the path.
Finally, there’s a small green sign that marks your arrival into Trumbull County and a large, white welcoming sign as you enter Weathersfield Township.
Although we only made it to Ohltown Mineral Ridge Road, because it was time for us to get home, we hope to make it to Niles sometime soon.
Then, we might have some more adventures on our way for our next trip.