Eleventh Leg – Out of Pittsburgh and Into the Ohio Countryside

Made about eighty miles today, from Pittsburgh, PA to Lake Berlin, Ohio.

  
Robin and Justin left at five to get Justin back to Harrisburg in time for work, so I am on my own now. I was at the hotel breakfast bar at six and rolling out of Pittsburgh at seven am. 
The route towards Cleveland followed Route 51 northwest along the Ohio River. Google tried to take me to a dead and street with a bike path that itself deadended in a pile of gravel within 50 yards, so I ended up in the traffic on Carson Boulevard, and nearly got clipped by a city bus. A few miles further along, Google tried to avoid the worst of the hills by detouring to Bruno Island, but the bridge it tried to send me on was definitively closed for construction, so I was left with the formidable hills of route 51. So I did not end up crossing any of the fabled bridges of Pittsburgh.
Route 51 varied from nice shoulders to no shoulders. It is also known as PA Bike Route A. Somewhere around Aliquippa, it became a four lane divided highway with no shoulders and a tight guardrail, but traffic was light enough by then that I could take the lane.

  

In Monaca, I crossed the Ohio and the Beaver rivers, and 51 began its long slow climb out of the Ohio River valley. It narrowed to a two lane road, and I passed a prefab home manufacturer. Unfortunately, that meant that sever wide-load semi trailers hauling actual houses passed me on the road, with the house hanging out over the shoulder. I would never have known what hit me if one passed too close. At least the drivers seemed very aware of the potential mishap, and slowed down until they had room to pass or I could pull over.
I crossed into Ohio at mile 45, and the road got bumpier. Pennsylvania,s industrial landscape had long since faded into countryside of dairy farms, woods, and meadows, I did my grocery shopping in Columbiana Ohio at the last supermarket I would see before the campsite, and ended up eating l7nch at Taco Bell because I managed to miss all the more local restaurants and wanted to make just one stop. My knees do better if I avoid multiple stops.

  
I am camping tonight at Philabaun’s Hidden Cove Resort and Campground in Deerfield, Ohio.

  

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