GREENE COUNTY — The roughly 20-mile round-trip ride from Xenia Station to Yellow Springs Station, on a relatively comfortable summer afternoon, proved to be the perfect grand finale for my Greene County bicycling columns.
It had everything:
• Scenic bridges and greenery.
• Pleasant fellow bicyclists and joggers along the way.
• Animal attacks.
… all the good stuff.
As I had done previously in my rides, I started off at Xenia Station’s parking lot and read the painted trail marker indicators on the sidewalks to get myself heading in the right direction.
A few weeks ago, I had taken the Little Miami Trail south into Spring Valley. This time, I was heading north to Yellow Springs on bike route 3. And that meant I would be trying the relatively new bike ways through downtown Xenia.
I like the idea of having a separate bicycling lane, because it keeps some form of a barrier between us bicyclists and the automobile and truck traffic. The only troubles I had on the downtown pathway was at the Main Street crossing. In order to activate the crossing light, you kinda have to lean over some plants and nearly fall off your bike in order to hit the button. But once I figured out what button I needed to push, I was on my way northward once again.
The trail crosses Detroit Street just before Third Street. Again, you push a crossing button, the light activates and you cross. Motorists were very good about yielding to those of us in the crossing lanes. (Thank you.)
The path winds its way northward behind Nick’s Restaurant and then in front of McDonald’s. It was just south of Nick’s where my animal attack occurred.
I feel lucky to be able to write about it.
There I was, meandering my way northward, taking in the scenery and pedaling away when I simultaneously heard a loud THWACK just as a bird flew into me! The bird sorta regrouped in mid-air and went on its way. And I checked to make sure everything I had was still in working order, too, and went on my way.
My guess is that the bird, upon seeing my very intimidating bicycling helmet, automatically figured I was moving in to wipe out its little bird family somehow. And so said bird did what any defensive bird would do in such a situation: He flew into my shoulder.
Either way, we were both fine and new quite well not to mess with the other ever again.
The Little Miami Trail crosses several small creeks and brooks, as well as the Little Miami River itself. I’m pretty sure the river was named after the Little Miami Trail. Yeah, that’s it.
But I liked how each of the bridges had a sign attached to it that tells you what creek, brook or river you happen to be crossing, I thought that was a nice touch.
Then when you get about a mile and a half south of Yellow Springs, you pass under the East Hyde Road covered bridge! Call me a city slicker, but I had never seen an actual covered bridge before then, so that was quite exciting for me.
Further north, you roll into Yellow Springs Station. Like Xenia Station, Yellow Springs Station appears to be a refurbished train station from decades ago when a railroad ran between the two towns.
After walking my bike over to Super-Fly Comics, to check out their selection of board games (yeah, I’m a board game nerd. What of it?!), I headed back south again to return to Xenia Station roughly an hour later.
Not a Final run
While I’m particularly saddened to realize that this is the last bike ride I’ll be doing this season (where I’ll have conned my boss into actually paying me to do it), I’m certain that it won’t be my last.
I wasn’t entirely certain of whether I would be able to cover each of the main bicycling trails in Greene County without a mishap or a leg cramp, a flat tire or something happening. But each of the rides went smoothly, and I truly enjoyed the rides and the friendly waves from the other trail users along the way.
I look forward to my next ride, and I hope I may have convinced someone out there to try it themselves, too. I think you’ll be glad that you did.
Thank you Kickstand Lodging!
Kudos and a hearty thank you goes out to the kind folks at Kickstand Lodging in Spring Valley. Located on 17 Main St. in Spring Valley, this bicycling Bed & Breakfast facility was kind enough to sponsor each of these bicycling columns this season. It was very much appreciated.