NE Ohio Hiker

Akron, OH

#1 May 21, 2013
Since moving here, my family and I have really enjoyed going on The Western Reserve Greenway Trail. It's one of my favorite parts of living in Ashtabula. I recently noticed a story about black bears being spotted in Youngstown, OH. In googling bear sightings in NE Ohio, it appears there was also a sighting a couple of years ago on the trail about 30 minutes from here. This is making me worried about continuing my daily walk on the trail which is really disappointing to me. It provides great exercise, and it is beautiful. I have never encountered a bear in person, outside of a zoo, and I'm afraid I would just panic. Any advice on black bears? Has anyone else ever encountered one in person? Also, are there any other good trails here in town that aren't as woodsy? Thanks.:)
long time in Bula

Ashtabula, OH

#2 May 21, 2013
I don't think you have anything to worry about. The biggest ones I have seen are ones that came over near the PA line out of the hunting preserve. They move away from people if they are not cornered. On the Greenway it is safer to have a bike and drive out to the Austinburg lots. Or park out by the old feed mill. I used that trails for years before they paved it. Went from one end to the other and never saw any bears. There is a old abandoned water tower by the Austinburg lot(rt307)and you want to be aware of that because people could be hiding in it at any time and come up out the woods out of nowhere. Years back I went in and saw it was a party cave of filth but out of the weather and a good enough bum shelter. I'd be more aware of crap like that than bears that don't want to mess with humans.
NE Ohio Hiker

Akron, OH

#3 May 22, 2013
Thank you so much for the information :) This makes me feel much better about going on it.
long time in Bula

Ashtabula, OH

#4 May 23, 2013
You also do NOT want to cross 84. It is not safe to come into the city by the projects, there is also a trail that connects and goes West off of that and it also is not safe to be on. So 84 clear out to Roaming Shores and most likely you will be stopped in Rock Creek because you won't know how to get around. It is a good distance of usable trail. There was a large group of middle age to elderly people that used the trial until they made it for snowmobiles and bicycles only. Plus a few kids on go carts. It was found out about after 40 years of use and the money hogs had to make contracts to cut the trees and pave. Just another thing the local trash ruined for the citizens. I have heard there is only a handful of people using it now. Should be pretty empty. I don't think I would go on it alone male or female. With another person it should be ok.
NE Ohio Hiker

Akron, OH

#5 May 23, 2013
Thanks again for the info. Do you know of any other trails in Ashtabula I could check out, either at schools or elsewhere in the city? I thought this one was perfect at first until I started getting scared due to the bear sightings. Maybe my fear of bears is irrational though. My stepdad was a logger for most of his life, and he said any bear he has encountered ends up running away. He did say it is more dangerous, of course, if there are cubs around.
long time in Bula

Ashtabula, OH

#6 May 23, 2013
Some people just go over to Edgewood school and walk the track. There is also one in the Harbor. There are trails all over this area. You could find all kinds of trails in the gulf but like everything in this town it helps to know the area. If you go on the viaduct and look over you can see the trail that was a old road back in the sixty's. You can follow that trail into the harbor and be down behind the hospital where the train wreck happened years ago. Or go the other way and end up in Kingsville. From any of these trails you can find the power lines. You can see if you are on 20 by the foreclosed mall a black dirt by those lines. You can follow them either way of 20 and if you are going to the Eastside jump 20 and continue until you find the trail beside the tracks that go either way, city or Kingsville. There are a lot of other trails. Some areas are worse than others. The hookers used to trick on the trail behind 51st because the dirty old men could walk down out the parks. Many times they almost got run over because they was right on the trail and ATVers did not expect them to be there in the pathway. I think they finally left.

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