Bike trail and river conditions just a couple clicks away

By Sarah Hippensteel Hall, Ph.D., manager of watershed partnerships

Before you head out on your next cycling or paddling adventure along the Great Miami, be sure to check out bike trail and river conditions. It’s always best to know before you go!

The live Bike Trail and River Conditions Map on the Great Miami Riverway website helps you understand river water levels and whether or not bike trail sections may be under water after rain events. And now, the Riverway has launched a River Water Bacteria Levels Map to provide information on river water quality.

Bike Trail Conditions

It’s always a good idea to check bike trail conditions before you go, especially if we’ve seen rain lately. Some trails are located within the levee systems that protect our cities from high water—and that means trail sections might be under water after rain or storms. You don’t want to leave the comfort of your house only to find out that a section of your favorite trail is covered with water.

The map’s color-coded symbols are set up just like a traffic signal, making it easy to read.

 

 

 

River Conditions

You can also check the river water levels to see if water conditions are appropriate for your experience level.

 

 

 

When paddling, it’s also a good idea to consider:

  • Wind
  • Weather
  • Temperature
  • Floating debris
  • River current
  • Boat size
  • Skill level
  • Ability to launch safely

IF IN DOUBT, DON’T GO OUT.

And keep these safety tips in mind:

  • Always wear a life jacket.
  • Never paddle alone.
  • Tell someone where you are going and when to expect you back.
  • You can find more safety tips here.

River Bacteria Levels – How High Is Unsafe for Recreation?

New to the Great Miami Riverway website is a map that helps river users understand water quality conditions and potential bacteria levels. The map promotes public health and safety by helping you decide when the water is safe to paddle.

 

 

 

Rain events can cause bacteria levels in river water to rise to an unsafe level for human contact. Bacteria can get into the river water from a variety of sources, including pet waste, storm sewers, septic tanks, and farm fields. And that bacteria can make you sick if you swallow any river water.

Using research conducted by the Miami Conservancy District, this Riverway web app estimates the concentration of E. coli bacteria, an indicator of fecal pollution, during different weather conditions. The Ohio EPA advises that recreation waters are unsafe for human contact when E. coli is > 298 colony counts per 100 mL of water.

Using these maps will help ensure your next adventure is not only fun but safe.

Find your way—safely—along the Great Miami Riverway!

This blog is also published on the Great Miami Riverway website.

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