One of my favorite summertime activities is climbing on the back of our Harley Davidson Ultra Classic and exploring Ohio with my husband, Rob. You may not know this, but Ohio offers some of the best day and overnight trips in the country. We have a group of friends that get together a couple times each month just to get out, enjoy the sunshine (and yes, sometimes the rain drops!) plus the fresh air, and to forget about some of the stresses that everyone encounters in their day-to-day lives.
Over time we have found some exceptional Ohio routes. I would like to share with you our TOP 5:
#5 The Amish Country Byway
For a step back in time, cruise the 160-mile Amish Country Byway. I recommend you pay close attention as it is common to see horse drawn buggies from time to time on these winding curves. This may be one ride you want to extent to an over-nighter, and stay in one of the quaint bed & breakfasts along the way.
A stop for home-baked goods at one of the many general stores is a great treat to take home.
#4 Routes 33/257/42/23 north through Delaware to Waldo
Leaving central Ohio on route 33 heading north, you get great views of the Olentangy River during most of the trip. You will then take Rout 257 to State Route 42 NE to Delaware. Then Route 23 north to Waldo. Most of this ride is very flat but the scenery is fantastic. A must stop would be to have lunch at the G & R Tavern for their widely known fried bologna sandwich.
#3 State Route 555 (the Triple-Nickel)
Heading east from Columbus to Zanesville (about 50 miles on interstate 70) you can start at Fink’s Harley Davidson dealership for a new tee or just to browse.
Then it’s off to the Triple Nickel (OH 555). This road will test the skills of even experienced riders with 90 degree turns throughout. Most of the ride meanders through beautiful farmland and wooded areas, so you’ll probably be able to catch a glimpse of several species of wildlife. Your ride time will likely run from 2-4 hours.
#2 Route 62 southwest to Ripley, Ohio
A fabulous ride southwest is one we’ve taken to Ripley, Ohio. Straight down Route 62 takes you through rural countryside passing through Washington Court House and Hillsboro on your way to the Ohio River.
#1 Route 56 through Hocking Hills
The scenery alone will make you fall in love with Ohio’s Hocking Hills region, but once you’ve taken a few of the winding curves you’ll discover the challenge in the ride as well. Route 56 from Circleville to Athens is a great day-long ride. You’ll twist through the Hocking Hills State Park and Wayne National Forest where you can stop at Ash Cave for a brief hike or continue on to Nelsonville.
Any time of the year, this is a fantastic ride, but the best time to travel this area is in the fall when the leaves are changing. Once you reach Athens, Ohio, you may want to stop for a bite to eat and an ice-cold beverage at Broney’s on Court Street near Ohio University.
It was really difficult to narrow down our favorites to only 5, but if you are just discovering Ohio’s many motorcycle routes, these are great ones to start with.
Thanks, and I hope you too can enjoy, Ohio in the fast lane!