County Line Trail

Alum Creek Greenway Trail

When the last section of bikeway was completed in late 2015, the official route of the Ohio-to-Erie Trail was moved over to the Alum Creek from the Olentangy Trail. This is worth noting, as the parallel Olentangy route could provide an alternate OTE route, in the event of a trail closing along the Alum Creek. [Scroll past 'Trail Facts' to continue reading.]

Creekside Underpass

Latest Update: 3/30/19 - A Look at the Recent Trail Flooding

Columbus, OH

3/30/19 - Alum Creek Trail Update

Columbus, OH

3/29/19 - More Blacklick & Alum Creek Trail Flooding

Columbus, OH

3/26/19 - Columbus Trail Flooding Update

Franklin County, OH

Columbus, OH - MetroParks Trails, especially Alum Creek Trail, continue to have issues from flooding this past week. Crews will be working on the ACT to remove silt and debris.

3/25/19 - Franklin County Park/Trail Facilities Notice

Franklin County, OH

3/24/19 - Flooding Update

Columbus, OH

3/23/19 - Flooding Update

Columbus, OH

3/20/19 - Columbus Area Trail Flooding

Columbus, OH

11/21/19 - Trail Closure at Innis Park

Columbus, OH

11/1/19 - Water Recedes from Trail Underpass

Columbus, OH

10/31/19 - Trail Underpass Flooded

Columbus, OH - The trail underpass at Rt. 104 (Frank Rd) is under water.

8/30/19 - Weakpoints in Central Ohio Wayfinding Signage

Columbus, OH - There's a lively discussion going on over at the Central Ohio Greenways page regarding a trail user survey. A poll there asks whether you 1) frequently get lost along Central Ohio Greenways, or 2) never get lost ('3 - seldom get lost' would have been a worthwhile option as well).

Unfortunately, ineffective signage has long been the norm for many Ohio bike trails, particularly in urban areas. This old blog post illustrates how urban wayfinding signs can often be less than helpful.

7/22/19 - Trail Alert

Columbus, OH - "City of Columbus will be doing utility work on the Alum Creek Trail North of Livingston Avenue and South of Morse Rd for the next several months. The trail will remain open, but watch for flaggers and equipment on the trail."

6/26/19 - Flooding Update

Columbus, OH - From Columbus MetroParks, "The Alum Creek Trail is still flooded in several sections including near Refugee Rd. Please use caution"

3/31/19 - Flooding Alert

Columbus, OH - From Columbus MetroParks, "Severe flooding and debris blocking majority of Alum Creek Trail. Will clear by tomorrow afternoon when flooding has subsided. Stay Safe!"

2/12/19 - Flooding Alert

Columbus, OH - From MetroParks, "Please be aware of flooding on the trails. Take care and do not ride through standing water if you do not know the depth. Stay safe."

12/19/18 - Trail Connector Paved

Westerville, OH - "Newest short paved wide path link. Alum Creek Trail to/from Otterbein U's STEAM Point building at Collegeview in Westerville..." more

12/3/18 - Sewer Pipe Project Progress

Columbus, OH - "Alum Creek Greenway Trail through far north Columbus is clear of temporary sewer pipes from City of Columbus Public Utilities Department underground line repair work. Most of the resulting damaged path pavement and shoulders have been repaired but some follow-up is still underway..." more

11/1/18 - Flooding on Columbus Trails

Columbus, OH - "Flooding on the Alum Creek Trail, Blacklick Trail, and Olentangy Trail. Please use caution." more...

10/19/18 - Possible Flooding in Low Lying Spots

Columbus, OH - "Be careful of possible flooding upon Alum Creek Greenway Trail's low laying sections. The Alum Creek Reservoir dam is releasing water... more

9/5/18 - Repaving Completed at Easton Soccer Fields

Columbus, OH - Repaving of the trail thru the Easton Soccer Fields has been completed. Some landscaping / finishing work remains. more...

9/2/18 - Flooding on Columbus-Area Trails

Columbus, OH - From Columbus MetroParks, "Please use caution. Flooding and storm debris along sections of trails. Crews conducting clean up."

8/10/18 - Temporary Closures Aug. 15

Columbus, OH - From MetroParks, "[On] August 15, 2018 between 7 am - 6 pm expect temporary closures between Innis Park and Easton Socccer Fields for tree removal."

7/25/18 - Section Closing July 25 - Sept. 8

Columbus, OH - From, "Alum Creek Trail will be barricaded [closed] for trail improvements through the Easton soccer field complex...

"...Expected construction duration will be through the first week of September 2018.

7/13/18 - Alum Creek Connector Reopens

Columbus, OH - "The paved Greenway path connector from east of Alum Creek Trail in far north Columbus along I-270 to/from Emrick Rd (Dempsey Rd & SR-3) was recently reopened.

"Part of it was relocated and repaved due to Korna Kokosing's office building expansion." more...

4/4/18 - Flooding on Columbus Trails

Columbus, OH - From Columbus MetroParks, "Flooding on the Olentangy and Alum Creek Trails."

2/25/18 - Flooding Worsens on Columbus Trails

This alert is from Columbus MetroParks today.

2/16/18 - Flooding on Alum Creek & Olentangy Trails

This alert from Columbus MetroParks did not specify which areas may be affected along the two trails.

2/11/18 - Sewer Line Work Jan. 2018 - Feb. 2019

From, "...As the trunk sewer is located along the Alum Creek Multi-Use Trail, users may notice caution signs, temporary ramps, and construction activity in close proximity. Every effort will be made to reduce any disruption to public accessed areas." more...

1/13/18 - Flooding North of 3 Creeks

From Columbus MetroParks, "The Alum Creek Trail is flooded north of 3 Creeks Park."

Trail Specs & Facts:

Location: Franklin County, OH

Class: A1++

Length: 23.9 miles / asphalt & concrete

Condition: Very good

Facilities: At the parks along the trail route.

Parking: Wolfe Park - E. Broad Street (See trail map for more options.)

Worth Noting: An 11-mile section of the trail is utilized by the cross-state Ohio-to-Erie Trail as it makes its way through Columbus.

Map: Alum Creek Trail or Sm Screen Version

Elevation: Mostly flat

More Trails in this Region: SW OH Trails List

As with many trails that move through urban landscapes, there's a lot to see along this bikeway. The trail skirts alongside housing developments, roadways, businesses, a golf course, recreational facilities and parks. It bobs and weaves along the Alum Creek, moving under bridges and across the creek numerous times. As with the Olentangy Trail, connecting parks along its route is a major objective, linking the trail with water and restroom locations.

The trail also pays homage to a great bike racer, Major Taylor, who receives trailside honors. Bikeway visionary Ed Honton is also remembered with a plaque and bridge dedicated in his honor. Ed founded the Ohio-to-Erie Trail project in 1991.

If you are a fan of bridge design and architecture, you'll see an interesting variety of examples along the bikeway.

The trail does a wonderful job of avoiding many busy road crossings by using bridge underpasses along the creek. This adds continuity to your ride and keeps you moving along. The only downside is that a number of these underpasses are prone to flooding and can be impassible during high water.

With some bikeways, such as the Ohio & Erie Towpath, trail closures due to flooding are not unusual. The heavy layer of dried mud we encountered along several Alum Creek underpasses demonstrates that it too suffers from flooding. For recreational riders this is a minor inconvenience. For commuters or those using the corridor for travel, it may require some alternate route planning.

Bow Bridge
Bow Truss Bridge

Trail signage keeps you up to speed on the park names and distances as you travel. The occasional 'You are Here' plotted on a large trail map sign shows you the big picture and gives you proper perspective. Some signage is also located where connecting spurs join the main trail and gives distances and directions to nearby destinations. This is all very helpful.

In the past, however, signage to help visitors stay on the main trail was inadequate. Hopefully that issue has been addressed. Riding off course is not a favorite pastime for most trail riders. Unless they do so intentionally.

(See this blog entry for more on poorly signed trails.)

As the trail was constructed, it was tied in with existing older segments at various points. As a result, you'll travel on surfaces that run the gamut from excellent to fair. But overall the surface condition is quite good.

On the Sunday that we visited the trail, the parks along the route were filled with people enjoying soccer and basketball games. The Easton complex is nice, only to be outdone by its Westerville counterpart further north where a grid of bikeways covers the city.

For those who have not seen such a concentration of trails in one area, it makes quite an impression. It's obvious that ped and bike travel is a valued priority within the local community.

creek crossing
Alum Creek Crossing

The Alum Creek Greenway Trail roughly parallels the Olentangy Trail which runs alongside the Olentangy River to the west.

The two trails share similarities as both use waterway greenbelts that connect with parks along their routes. Both connect with bikeways to the south as well. The Olentangy to the Scioto Trail and the Alum Creek to the Blacklick Trail.

At Cooper Park we noticed a signed bike route that connects the two trails. Look for more bikeway connections in Columbus in the near future.

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