Tag Archives: Buffalo Valley Rail Trail

#30daysofbiking – day 21 – Bike Rural Routes & Rail Trail

Sloth, Klinutus, and I did a ride organized by the Linn Conservancy yesterday.

We had a guide who told us all about the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail, including some of the future plans for it. From memory:

  • Mini trail head in Vicksburg: They want to build a small parking lot / rest room in Vicksburg where the trail crosses Beaver Run Road.
  • Crossing US 11/15: Major engineering work would be required, so they are looking to possibly route trail users to the intersection of US11/15 with PA45.
  • Crossing the Susquehanna: The bridge caught on fire, and there’s a lot of work to do to fix it back up. The trail probably won’t cross the river any time soon.

The scenery was nice.

Farm

Scenery

We rode down the Rail Trail to the Eastern trail head, then back to Vicksburg to talk about the new trail head they want to build there. Then, we turned down Hoffa Mill Road, to see the mill. The mill is apparently still powered by undershot water wheels.

Mill

This technology will come in handy during the zombie apocalypse.

After we checked out the mill, we completed the loop back to the Dale Walker House. Sloth and I promptly headed to Ard’s for some non-paleo dinner.

Ride Stats:

There were a lot of side roads, farm roads, and other interesting things we didn’t get to explore, but I have a feeling we will on future excursions.

I have many more photos in my Gallery, in case you are a person who likes photos.

#30daysofbiking – Day 6

For today’s installment of #30daysofbiking, I met up with Klinutus, my Evil Sister, and Der Struwwelpeter. We started and ended today’s adventure at Ard’s Farm, because they have enormous cheeseburgers, and this ride would be ending near lunch time. Ard’s built a little connector trail between their parking lot and the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail, so easy access for bicyclers.

Helpful signs ensure that you can find your way to the cheeseburgers.

Struwwelpeter Dance

I had the trail-a-bike, so I towed Der Struwwelpeter down the trail to Mifflinburg,

Towing Der StruwwelpeterHeading to Mifflinburg

Once we made it to Mifflinburg, we stopped to catch our breaths, and observe the Amish people.

Amish Buggy

Then, it was back to Ard’s for lunch. A total of 8.6 miles for the day.

9 miles

Buffalo Valley Rail Trail Politics

I’ve been trying to keep up with the status of the proposed Buffalo Valley Rail Trail. There’s been some pretty hilarious shenanigans underway, so I thought I’d summarize what’s been going on best as I can piece it together from various sources.

A few months ago, the Lewisburg Area Recreation Authority acquired about 11 miles of abandoned railroad tracks between Mifflinburg and Lewisburg.

OpenCycleMap of Buffalo Valley Rail Trail

Over the summer, the railroad tracks and ties were removed, and it looked like some of the trail would be open by spring 2010. A “friends of the trail” group was organized. I went to the first meeting of this group and signed up for the mailing list. We were supposed to register as a 503(c) non-profit, and get to work picking up trash, posting signs, etc.

I never heard from the group after that meeting, and I’m not sure if it still exists.

At some point, the trail was named the “Buffalo Valley Rail Trail,” and there was some sort of a kick-off meeting in late October.

Then things got weird.

Most of the rail trail actually lies outside of LARA’s jurisdiction, so LARA wanted to give the project to Union County. Pandemonium ensued.

Republican County Commissioner Preston Boop fired off an email to the Chairwoman of the Republican Committee, where he asked her for support from local Republicans to oppose the “Secret agenda and meetings of local elected Democrats,” and “wasteful spending of precious funds.”

Chairwoman Yvonne Morgan obliged, emailing her supporters, calling the trail a “Joke” and “Frivolity,” and even making a nasty personal attack on County Commissioner John Showers. This email exchange was promptly leaked to the press, and I have a copy of it here: (click for big)

The email exchange

If you’re so inclined, you can even watch a video of County Commissioner John Showers reading this ridiculous email into the public record. Keep an eye out for Yvonne Morgan sporting a pig hat.

Yvonne Morgan in a pig hat

In any event, LARA has a $3.7 million transportation grant from PennDOT for construction, but they can’t get that money until the design phase is done. They’ve applied for a $500,000 grant to do the design work, but they don’t know if they’ll get that money or not. In the meanwhile, it looks like they are going ahead with design work on credit.

I hope all this nonsense is sorted out before the end of the summer, because I’d really like to be able to ride my bike out to the Purple Cow for some ice cream.