Deeds Point

Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes

The Buckeye Trail is one very long loop trail…. 1,444 miles around the entire state of Ohio. I have hiked on several sections of it because the trail travels right through the city of Dayton. One of my favorite trail in the area is located at Caesar Creek State Park near Waynesville, Ohio – it is part of the Buckeye Trail. Much of the Little Miami Scenic Bike Trail bike trail between Cincinnati and Springfield is part of the trail. Deed’s Point in downtown Dayton is on the trail as well.

I have been fascinated by the Buckeye trail for several years and have read a few books about this unique looped long trail. I have just finished reading a book by Andy Niekamp, Captain Blue, who was the first person to solo thru-hike the trail back in 2011. It took him 88 days and a boatload of determination and perseverance. The book is called Captain Blue on the Blue Blazes and is available on Amazon.

Captain Blue is from Kettering, Ohio but he has been an adventurer for many years.  Captain Blue is an experienced hiker who has logged 14,000 miles in more than 30 states coast-to-coast including 9,500 miles on the Appalachian Trail. I have heard him speak several times and he is a powerful advocate for the outdoors.

Andy began and ended his hike in Dayton. His first steps were taken on March 20 and he ended up back at Deeds Point on June 15, 2011. His 88 days are filled with wonderful stories of support and networking, of kindness from trail angels around the state, of rain and frustrating unmarked trail, and of beautifully blazed sections along country roads, through towns and cities, across old canal towpaths, and through history-rich communities at all four corners the state. Captain Blue even includes a love story into his book that adds a special dimension to the trail.

I’d encourage you to take a look at this book that records Captain Blue’s historic thru-hike of the Buckeye Trail. Click on the book cover for a link to Amazon.

Categories: Buckeye Trail, Captain Blue, Deeds Point, Ohio, Thru-Hike, Trail, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Some Special Visits to Downtown Dayton

Sunrise SignPart of the Every Trail MetroPark Challenge involves a visit to several Downtown Dayton parks. Rocky and I set out on a cold Saturday to take in the sights. We ended up hiking in several very interesting places: The 2nd Street Market, Deeds Point, Riverscape, Sunrise Park, and Island Metropark. Each spot was very unique and we had never visited Deeds Point or Sunrise before.

We began our adventure at the Second Street Market, which has changed a great deal since our last visit several years ago. It was very crowded with an atmosphere of arts and crafts and wonderful foods to try. A delight for me was a saxophone player grooving on some jazz close to one end of the market. Rocky and I took a seat and listened to this wonderfully smooth musician play some old tunes of the 40’s and 50’s. After some great music, we were able to avoid the temptations of pastries and breads while made our way down the road to Deeds Points.

Deeds Point 1Deeds Point MetroPark is located at the convergence of the Mad and Great Miami Rivers. This wonderful little area highlights a timeline of flight with plaques remembering major historical leaps of accomplishments, and a life-size statue of the Wright Brothers (Orville, Wilbur, and Dave). The park also has a monument to the Dayton Peace Accord that remembers the agreement for peace between Bosnia and Herzegovina struck in Dayton, Ohio on November 21, 1995.

Rocky and I walked across a bridge, merged with the Buckeye Trail, and took a stroll over to RiverScape MetroPark. We hiked along the concrete path past the major concert hall/ice skating rink and then down along the river. Despite the cold wind, the day was bright and sunny. We continued to make a loop back to Deeds Park and our car.

RiverscapeWe then drove to Island MetroPark. It is just a few miles north of RiverScape and is situated where the Stillwater River flows into the Great Miami. Rocky and I walked the paved loop around the bandshell remembering attending concerts when we lived just on the other side of Salem Avenue from the park. Again, the path merged with the Great Miami River Bike Path, also the Buckeye trail. The short hike was a nice stroll down memory lane for us, before we made our way to our final destination.

We completed our adventure at a spot we had never visited before, Sunrise MetroPark. It is a tiny urban walkway conveniently located just north of downtown Dayton along Edwin C. Moses Boulevard. It sits at the juncture of Wolf Creek and the Great Miami River and provides an excellent view of the city’s skyline. We even saw a heron down along Wolf Creek. On the far Sunrise Cranenortheast end of the walkway is a memorial to the Bosnia Peace Talks. Perhaps the most interesting part for me was seeing the three stones from Bosnia and Herzegovina that have been incorporated into the memorial. They are building blocks and stones from historical buildings that were destroyed in the war. Both the American flag and the flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina are flying over the plaza.

Rocky and I had lots of fun visiting these historical and unique metroparks in the area. We would encourage you to take some time and check out these special places in Dayton.

Categories: Deeds Point, Every Trail MetroPark Challenge, Local Hikes, MetroPark, RiverScape, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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