Since I planned to spend the bigger part of Sunday with my 80-yr-old father, the RetroKids and I did our traditional Fathers Day bike ride on Saturday. Our usual "go-to" for bike rides is the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath, but this time we opted for some different scenery. The Towpath is a great biking destination, and very popular - but it isn't the only game in town. We are fortunate enough to also have a very nice trail on a converted rail line, known locally as the "Summit Bike & Hike" trail. The trail follows what was once known as the Akron, Bedford & Cleveland RR (also known as the "ABC Line") which went out of service in the 1930s, and spans the north-east quarter of Summit County, but also continues well into Cuyahoga County to the north, and Portage County to the East. It's a paved trail, well maintained, mostly flat, and a good place to ride with kids.
One of the best spots to stop and explore is Brandywine Falls. The path crosses a bridge directly over the falls, but it's a great place to get off the bikes and follow the boardwalk down into gorge.
|The boardwalk path winds down along the rocky ledges, and to a couple of observation decks to see the falls.|
My favorite part of the trail is a few miles south of the falls, where it passes through a corridor of steep rocky ledges. The ledges are so tall, covered in mosses and ferns, and it's always noticeably darker and cooler. I don't know if it was a natural formation, or if it was blasted out to make way for the railroad (it appears to be natural - but it's almost too perfect for a rail line to assume some blasting didn't happen). Anyhow, as we ride through that mossy green cathedral, I keep expecting a Hobbit or Golem or some other Tolkien creation to make an appearance.
|While passing through the rocky corridor, we stopped for a drink and my daughter happened to park her bike in a perfect little spot of dappled sunshine.|
So that was Saturday. For Sunday, my plan was to drive up to my father's (it's about an hour's drive away) and make him dinner. But before making the drive, I got up early for a ride on my own. The forecast was for temperatures in the 90s, but it was still in the upper 60s when I left.
I took the red Mercian, which hasn't been ridden since I finished renovating the Sequoia. The Mercian's shorter wheelbase and slightly thinner tires means it doesn't have quite the ride of the Sequoia, but the handling is "snappier."
|I stopped for a photo by the old covered bridge.|
That's all for now - to all the fathers out there, Happy Fathers Day.