No one will be surprised to hear that the Little Miami River is among my favorites. This national and state scenic river seemed like a pretty good focal point for a not too warm, but otherwise nice, Sunday drive and that's the way I used it. I opted to tackle the river in an up stream manner and the Four Seasons Marina, in the middle photo, was more or less my starting point. The other photos show that getting to the mouth of the Little Miami on land, is not easy.

Some landmarks that aren't exactly associated with the river but that are passed as you drive north. Louie's parking lot was full but the cars were for the flea market next door. Had the bar & grill been open, it would have been the perfect place for breakfast.

Lunken airport is home to lots of both private and commercial aircraft and will be the site of an SCCA race in mid-August. Leaving one runway open for planes, a 2 1/4 mile course will be marked and three races, including Pro Spec Racers, will be held August 18th & 19th. The Frisch's Mainliner sign is a true classic. You can't see it in the photo but both propellers on that plane are spinning at full speed.

Just about the first place that the river can be reached without trespassing, is Bass Island near Newtown. It provides fishing and canoe access. Of course, not many canoes are launched here since most canoeing is directed down stream and there isn't much to interest canoeists between here and the Ohio River.

Milford is a real river town and rightfully proud of native son, Olympic medalist Jim Terrell. A small riverside park bearing his name sits next to the building where his dad, Ross, operated a canoe livery that was an obvious influence on Jim. Across the river, the former Millcroft Restaurant waits for a buyer to bring it back to life.

Not far from Milford, Camp Dennison is home to two museums, a very good restaurant, and a lot of history. Two stone houses built in the first decade of the 19th century hold the newly opened Camp Dennison and Waldschmidt House Museum. During the Civil War, a major Union Army training camp existed here.

The school building was constructed in 1863 for less militant training and it seems a good possibility that the large groups of men passing through the army camp aided the school house construction. There is really good food inside and a separate building houses a gift shop. The restaurant is accessible to both the river and the bike trail that passes behind it.

Loveland is one of two Little Miami river towns that I've called home. The Sleepy Hollow Inn isn't officially in Loveland (Branch Hill) but is a source of good eats near the river. The popular Bruce's Loveland Canoe Livery is just one of many places providing the means to see the scenic river from the ideal vantage point.

Loveland was one of the first communities to embrace the Little Miami Trail and many still think of it as the Loveland Bike Trail. Bike rental & refreshments are available from businesses along this bit of the trail. A bit further north is Chateau La Roche, a truly unique Loveland landmark. Sir Nick, one of 14 Knights of the Golden Trail who continue Harry Andrews's project, was there today. Visitors can explore the rooms and overlooks of the castle but there is nothing like seeing stone ramparts emerge from the tress as you float by in a canoe.

Faithful readers will recognize Foster as a stop on the C2C2C outing. Really faithful readers may recognize it from the "Day minus 33" test page of Rt66in99. At least I've tried to combat boredom a little by taking pictures from the landward side of the Train Stop including that monument to slow river life, Mount Rush No More.

Warren County towers. Peters Cartridge Company was founded in 1877 and was the focal point of a little community that grew along the Little Miami banks near the present Kings Mills. The company became part of Remington in 1934 and the buildings had many different uses, including a Columbia record plant, before being deserted. The orange brick building is perched on a rather pretty Little Miami overlook and was once the home of the electronics division of the Cincinnati Milling Machine Company and the tallest point in the county. C.M.M.Co became Cincinnati Milacron than just Milacron. The company is only a fraction of its former size and the tower has dropped to the county's second tallest behind the blue tipped Fujitec tower.

At Fort Ancient, Morgan's Canoe Livery lies between the river's public access site and the Little Miami Trail. I'm not sure that this was the first livery on the river but it is the first one I remember. I would have liked to learn the story behind the fellow with the full pack and determined stride. He did stand out on a trail populated by bicycles recently unloaded from near by car mounted racks. Up the hill, is Fort Ancient. Not really a military fort, it's "walls" are 2,000 year old mounds constructed by the Hopewell Indians. A significantly newer (1998) museum is near the entrance to the park.

It has nothing to do with the river but the annual motor cycle hill climb is what many folks associate with the town of Oregonia. Riders and spectators come from throughout the country for this truly major event. In the town itself, the Little River Restaurant made a name for itself when it first opened a few years back but I'm unsure what sort of marks to give it now. It was disappointing on my last visit but that was some time back and it was so good previously that I hate to knock it. I need to get some current input. Warren County doesn't have any historic covered bridges but it does have this 1982 model on Waynesville road.

ADDENDUM: In 2004, I made it to the actual hill climb. Pictures of the event can be seen here.

We stopped in Waynesville on the way to Cleveland a couple of weeks back and I figured that was enough for awhile. I planned to skip it today but plans were changed by an empty gas tank and I was saved by this vintage looking setup. I returned to the Corwin side of the river as soon as the fuel situation was remedied.

I have canoed all of the Little Miami between Indian Ripple Road and Bass Island but had not seen its source before today. Strange but true. Clifton Gorge is beautiful and I have no excuse or explanation for not having visited it before now. I had heard that the view from the Old Mill Restaurant is spectacular but discovered that it serves only breakfast and lunch and was already closed when I arrived. I assume that this quiet pool is the mill pond and can be considered the starting point of the Little Miami. On more mainstream roads, I made it home from Clifton in about two hours after spending seven getting there.

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