words and photos by Grace Ebner
Head to the Peninsula Depot and embark on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad (CVSR) for a day of healthy sunshine, beautiful scenery, yummy food and local wares. As part of the CVSR’s Bike Aboard! program, board the train for a one-way ride and then bike back to the depot on the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail. Cost is $3 for the one-way ride, and passengers can choose how far out they want to ride and bike back. Folks who’d prefer to walk or run the trail are also welcome to utilize the train.
Taking the CVSR southbound to Botzum Station allows for an enjoyable seven mile bike ride back to Peninsula Depot. Bikers will find this section of the towpath trail delightful. The trail is flat and smooth and highlights the beauty of Northeast Ohio, alternating between tree-lined shady sections and sunny boardwalks over the marshes. Bikers will also be relieved to find a place to stop halfway through the route for a rest and bite to eat. At the intersection of Bolanz Rd. and Riverview Rd., Hunt Farm Visitor Information Center offers restrooms, educational displays and activities for kids, and at Szalay’s Sweet Corn Farm & Market, bikers can purchase fresh fruit, corn on the cob and ice cream.
Upon returning to Peninsula Depot, bikers can enjoy a patio dinner and cold beer at Winking Lizard Tavern. Bring some cash to buy Cuyahoga Valley National Park gear or support local shops such as Elements Gallery and Right Light Gallery, which both feature the work of Ohio artisans. And if, after this beautiful day biking the trail, you’ve decided you would like to make it a regular part of your week, be sure to stop by Century Cycles for top-rate biking gear and advice.