Saturday, October 17th, 2020
London, Ohio to Orgonia, Ohio . 50m
Well guess what…we survived the night and I only took one picture all day!
A friend of Linda’s had contacted her last night and made arrangements to ride out with us in the morning. Paul, arrived promptly at 7:30am ready for the morning. I checked the weather and it was 35deg when we started out.
The trail from London to Xenia is called the Prairie Grass Trail…passing farmland, countryside, silos and barns.
When we arrived to the village of South Charleston, we did not hesitate to find the first open cafe to go inside just to warm ourselves up. I was wearing two pair of leggings, two pair of gloves, a fleece hat and face covering, a wool sweater, down jacket and two other layers on top…I felt fine but there was a chill to my fingers. Paul was only riding to this point with us and turned around to ride back to London. It was a pleasure to have him along with us this morning.
Onward to Cedarville, Ohio…home of Cedarville University. My mother and father attended this college back in the early 50’s. Here is where they met and later married!
Cedarville also has a few nice cafe’s which we stop at, but this time we order some real food! Before going inside I strip down a layer of pants and a layer on top…it is starting to warm up a bit.
We knew that after leaving Columbus and entering the village of London, the trail was going to be flat without any road travel. We were cruising…right into Xenia and the Xenia Station Depot.
Today the railroads are gone and this junction is now a cycling center. The Xenia Station, a replica of the railroad station is the hub for five regional rail trails. The crossing of these three railroad rights-of-way created six spokes on a wheel with Xenia Station in the center. Of these six spokes, five have been coverted to rail trails. The one exception was the B&O line to west Dayton.
The original brick railroad station was built in the 1880’s. This replica, complete with a history museum, classroom and an observation tower called the Hub Lookout, was built in 1998 by the city of Xenia.
Leaving the Xenia Station we were both in very familiar territory. I frequent the Little Miami Scenic Trail weekly either for running, biking or walking. From Xenia to Spring Valley, through the edge of Corwin and on to Orgonia, we bike along the Little Miami National Wild & Scenic River.
The Little Miami River is a tributary of the Ohio River that flows 111 miles through five counties.
Arriving in Orgonia we had yet to find tent sites. The trail passes a small local church which has a sign out front that welcomes the riders to visit their shelter for some rest and relaxation. When we arrived, there was a family neighborhood birthday party going on under the shelter, so Linda and I politely waited out front until they began to clean up their cookout. In the meantime, we scouted some land across the street for possible tent sites. Mt first reaction was a “No”…why? First, we did not know who owned the land nor did we have permission to tent on it. Second, the trails were wide which indicated to me that they were used by mountain bikers, etc…not wanting to get run over…and third, there was a popular biker bar and grill just across the path. Too close for me on a Saturday night. I had already called the church and left a detailed message as to us tenting in the back for the night…so back we went.
We returned back to the church and while I was scouting the property for where to pitch my tent, Linda was out front already with her tent set up in full view! Naturally when the local sheriff drove past he stopped to talk to Linda. She explained our plans. For our safety, he said we would be safer on the church lot than across the street in the woods…so here we stayed!
Tomorrow is our last day!