After changing out of cycling clothes, the car was pointed north towards Westfield, Indiana, a drive of almost 300 miles. We arrived at the Hampton Inn (4.5 out of 5); it was chosen largely because of its proximity and easy access to the trail. After checking in, I changed back into cycling clothes and began cycling the Rail Trail Hall of Fame Monon Trail.
A former railroad route, the Monon Trail was established in 1996 and transformed from railway to greenway, intended for commuter and recreational use. It now spans more than 25 miles in length, starting in the town of Sheridan and connecting south through Westfield and Carmel. From there, the Monon Trail continues into Indianapolis through the Broad Ripple neighborhood and meets up with the Cultural Trail near Massachusetts Avenue downtown. This was an exemplary urban trail, and just plain fun to ride.
Just north of my access was the Monon Community Center with the largest outdoor waterpark I’ve seen. And then turning south I rode past the Center for Performing Arts, a world-class performance venue; the fun and exciting Midtown Plaza, an outdoor gathering space filled with games, activities, restaurants and specialty shops to keep everyone entertained; and finally the City Center and the Carmel Arts and Design District with restaurants and shops. There, I turned around and rode back to Westfield. Today’s ride was one of the most fun ones I’ve been on despite a headwind on the return portion.