Posts Tagged With: Buckeye Trail

Taylorsville: Day Two

The Buckeye Loop

Our Sunday evening church service on March 11th was canceled, so Rocky and I decided to return to Taylorsville MetroPark for an afternoon hike in hopes of finishing all the trails at the park. The day before we had walked the 6.8 miles of blazed trails and today we were headed toward the estimated 7 miles of unmarked trails including the Buckeye Trail Loop, the Bridgewater Loop, The Blue Heron Loop, and the Observation Deck Loop. I like the idea of a loop trail. They sound easy and, in theory, should just take the hiker in a nice, simple circle. However, because of our experience the day before on marked trails that were supposed to be loops but were hard to find, I was a little apprehensive about finding our way on unmarked trails.

Contrary to my misgivings, the trails on Day Two were easy to navigate and the loops were simple to follow. I think my favorite trail of the day was the Buckeye Trail Loop. It began with a long straight tunnel of trees that made the corridor a rather unusual experience. I want to return in the late spring/early summer when the leaves will provide a lush umbrella over the path. The loop turned south and led us along the Great Miami River for a lovely walk beside the water. The loop was about 2.5 miles and was quite flat and easy. I would recommend this trail to anyone wanting a nice easy stroll in the woods.

Rocky in the Gnarly Wood

We drove across the Taylorsville Dam to the east side and turned right down Bridgewater Road to the Bridgewater Loop. The entrances were closed so we parked our car along the road and hiked to the trailhead. This loop took us as well along the river on the opposite bank and further south from the Buckeye loop. It was a shorter trail than the Buckeye loop and it had a little elevation change but not much – another easy trail.

Observation Deck Loop

Rocky and I hopped back into our Toyota and drove to a third area that had easy access to both the Blue Heron Loop and the Observation Deck Loop. We walked the Blue Heron Loop first and were greatly disappointed when we did not see one Blue Heron. The path circled an inland lake with ducks and geese but no heron was there posing for my camera. On the opposite side of the parking lot was the Observation Deck Loop. This trail basically encircled a large field. We thought it is was a rather boring trail until we saw two gorgeous bluebirds. Neither Rocky nor I had not seen bluebirds in years and it was a highlight of the day. It was a perfect way to end our time at Taylorsville MetroPark

It is always enjoyable to be with my wife on the trails and today was no exception. The weather was beautiful, the trail was relatively dry, and the conversation/prayer time was sweet. Three more MetroParks to go to complete our thru-hike challenge. Next up: Wesleyan and Wegerzyn.

Categories: Buckeye Trail, Hiking, Local Hikes, Rocky, Rowdy, Taylorsville MetroPark, Thru-Hike | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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

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