September 13, 2013
The Olentangy Trail consists of about 15 miles of multi-use pathways that travels alongside the Olentangy River. The upper olentangy trail on the north begins in the area behind the shopping plaza with the Hills Market north of Hard Road. It continues south to an area a bit beyond Whetstone Park in Clintonville. It passes by/through a number of parks including Olentangy Parklands, Antrim, Kenney, Beechwold and Whetstone. There are a couple of places to stop and take a break if needed, or if you have lots of time and want to view the scenery. There are benches at Antrim and on the north side of Whetstone park. Save some money on gas, get a good workout and enjoy nature during a brisk walk, run or bike ride on the trail.
On a recent ride, I rode from Antrim to Whetstone and into the North High Street area of Clintonville to stop at the Saturday farmers market and grab lunch. The farmers market is one of the largest in central Ohio. Also, I checked out a couple of the shops in the area, including the Elm & Iron store. (See photo below) It's tucked into an old gas station/service shop and sells some vintage and some made-to-look vintage and eclectic decor items. The prices at the shop aren't cheap, though. For lunch I had some Luna Kombucha with a grilled cheese panini from Groovy Spoon. Later for dessert I had a butterscotch praline scone from Mellissa's Incredible Edibles. The bike ride was about 25 minutes and the trail is usually busy on the weekends.
About a month ago, I joined a friend to ride from Olentangy Parklands to the Lane Avenue bridge and the give-or-take 20 mile roundtrip ride took a little under 2 hours to make. It was a good workout and a little easier on my feet and joints than running for about 2 hours.
I also walked 8 miles along the trail from the Worthington Hills Market to Whetstone Park and back. I suggest riding a bike since you can go further and you'll feet wil thank you, too.
The Lower Olentangy Trail passes by Whetstone, Clinton/Como, Tuttle parks and ends up near the Northbank Park downtown. I suggest making a stop on the South Campus Gateway by exiting at the Lane Avenue bridge to High Street to eat if you take this route. My pick would be one of my favorite places to go on campus-Gooeyz, a place with a variety of delicious grillled cheese sandwiches on offer.
The Elm & Iron store in Clintonville offers an interesting variety of furniture and decor items.