The Lake Shore Electric Railway Trail, in Huron, Ohio, is a good example of how a stand alone trail benefits a local community. A well-traveled spur hooks onto the path not far from its east endpoint which terminates at the Huron High School athletic fields and stadium along Jim Campbell Boulevard. The residents of a nearby housing community use this connection regularly, as the broad singletrack attests. It's ideal for commuting to school or catching the local football game.
A pedestrian bridge conjoins the stadium and trail and connects more neighborhoods to the mix by passing over the Rt. 6 highway.
Further west the single track narrows as the trail makes its way parallel to Rt. 6 toward Rye Beach Road. It stops a bit short and ends at Lake Erie Parkway, just behind Woodlands Elementary school.
Beyond the spur, the trail was void of users during our visit. Despite the close proximity of the 4-lane highway, the ride was relatively peaceful. You could hear passing traffic and easily read the highway exit signs as you rode along, but it was not disconcerting.
We came upon sections where the surrounding brush was cut back perhaps 20-25' deep. Other sections showed somewhat larger growth (2-4') from a similar cut, while others were a bit taller yet. It appears this process is somewhat periodic and sporadic. But the depth of this brush removal may have a lot to do with that. This was no simple trailside mowing.
As a result, we found varing stages of growth along the path from closely cropped grasses to taller brush and trees. Some larger trees were spared and as always, lend charm and character to any trail. But the trees that towered over the trail near the housing development really got our attention. They reached well above the tops of the utility poles that line the opposite side of the trail, topping out at perhaps 45-50' high.
The trail has a few very small dips, one of which offers a small bridge for users. Primarily a dirt and firm gravel surface, the trail does have a stray ballast stone here and there, but is generally quite firmly packed, smooth and solid when riding through on a mountain bike.
See Steven Myers' review for more.
Length: Approx. 1.5 miles / gravel & dirt
Condition: Good to Very Good
Facilities: Steven Myers notes, "Closest water & restroom stops are in Fabens Park (in season). Cross the pedestrian bridge [at the stadium] over the highway and turn right. The Fabens Park entrance is at the end of the street."
Food: More from Steven, "Fast food outlets are at the Rye Beach Rd exit off Ohio 2; nice sit-down restaurants are in the city of Huron."
Parking: Parking at the east endpoint at the Huron High stadium lot on Jim Campbell Blvd.