Riding out to Monaca tomorrow to one of my company’s sleep labs to do IT work. I think I have a solid route, a lot of it uses the Ohio River Trail.
Anything cool to do in the towns on the way? I’m passing through Leetsdale, Ambridge, Aliquippa…
There’s an awesome little bakery in Sewickley, if you’re passing through there.
Ambridge Bike Shop is kinda fun, too…lots of unicycles and tandems in addition to the usual fare.
Maple resturant on maplewood st. in Ambridge has good eats. There is also Old Economy Villiage which is an 18th/19th century village on the western end of Ambridge.
Leetsdale is home of two restaurants that are worth knowing about; Mikes Place, which is on Ferry Street a half block on the river side of Ohio River Boulevard. A nice sandwich and a beer type place, although I suspect you’ll forgo the beer. Also in Leetsdale is Azul, a very nice Mexican restaurant, located one block on the uphill side of Ohio River Boulevard (or one block downhill from Beaver Avenue) at Rapp Street.
Ambridge has the bike shop, as noted. Merchant Street provides a nice route through Ambridge that hits the main business district. Duff, one block up hill, is a little less interesting, but extends further. The Maple Restaurant on Maplewood at “about 14th” is an old time family run diner. Hot beef sandwiches on Wonder bread their specialty. I go for the old style malted milks, which I think they still serve in in a glass, accompanied by the “remainder” in the metal shaker. Maple is the street that runs betweel Ohio River Boulevard and Merchant. Another local place is Police Station Pizza, which might have a real name, but I forget it. Right next to the Police Station on Merchant. A by the slice, carry out place that people either love or hate. Not sure they are open for lunch though.
I’ve focused on food here, but there are other lovely things about these communities as well. Sewickley has great old architecture (love the library on Thorn Street) and the Sewickley Cemetery is beautiful. But, probably not what is most of interest during a ride like this.
P.S. Will you take the California Avenue Route through to Emsworth, then ORB to Beaver? Wondering how the ORB stretch is for an experienced cyclist. it’s short — less than a mile — but I’ve never actually ridden it.
@swalfoort:Wondering how the ORB stretch is for an experienced cyclist. it’s short — less than a mile — but I’ve never actually ridden it.
It varies based on current landslide cleanup conditions/general road construction. When it’s down to one lane to the left against the median, not so much fun…otherwise, not too bad, especially if you’re rolling outbound in the AM when most traffic is inbound.
Shoulder tends to be okay to ride on if desired.
If things feel too hairy, you can make a right on Tom’s Run–>left on Duff and climb up to Mt Nebo. You take on some serious climbing in exchange for slower/less traffic that way.
I am emphatically NOT interested in the climb to Mt Nebo via Toms Run. Duff Road in that stretch reminds me of something out of deliverance. For the climb to Mt. Nebo I prefer the Roosevelt Road connection directly from Center Avenue in Emsworth. Outbound, take a right at the Boro Building (big clock), head uphill two short blocks. Take a left and within a block or so, follow the road as it heads uphill to the right. A gradual, do-able climb of 2-3 miles will take you to the top of Mt. Nebo, opposite the small church.
The landslide is pretty much gone, road conditions more or less back to normal. I think I could handle the right outbound. Inbound consists of an uphill in traffic (literally no shoulder). I am so slow I am afraid I would irreparably damage bike-car relations in that area for a long time if I tried to ride it.
@ swalfoort: I’ve basically just done the google bike deal, looked through and didn’t see anything that looked too hairy. Definitely does seem like there are plenty of detours I can take if I feel like the traffic sucks. I’m probably leaving around 10 tomorrow morning so it won’t be weekday rush-hour or anything.
@swalfoort: Agreed re: Roosevelt. Way nicer than Duff. My suggestion was more intended for anyone who is on 65 at that point already, and really wants to get off in a hurry.
Ambridge bike shop sold me a bike that was 2 sizes too big for me. I should have known better but I am displeased with that. Nice people though.
I am from monaca. Never found anything to do there when o was younger. Sat at the enter eat n park a lot. Couldn’t wait to get out of there.
So, this was fun. Two hilarious and awful things happened to me, however:
– my directions blew away in the wind about half an hour into this trip, and I winged it the rest of the way.
– I ate breakfast at whole foods and had my hat and balaclava stuffed in my back pocket while walking around there, and they fell out. so I had to do the whole thing with cold ears.
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