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CINCINNATI/COVINGTON/TAYLOR MILL
Sep. 18 Sep. 19 Oct. 5 2009

This batch covers 3 events, but there's sort of a geographic continuity. All but the first 2 items are from what's come to be known as my Focus on Locust - for it involves (among other goodies) Locust Pike, a bippin' strange road in Kenton County, KY. There's also moar Oktoberfest fun!






From a Midnight Adventure on early Friday morning before Oktoberfest weekend. This is a view of Cincinnati from Covington's Devou Park - a view photographed by others countless times before, but seldom after dark. That's because Devou Park is closed after dusk. So my crew violated an Allowed Cloud just to get here!




The Eyewitness Cam continues to sharpen its nighttime intrigue. This is biking away from Cincinnati's Oktoberfest on Saturday (the day someone smeared rotten fruit cocktail all over a portable restroom). Most of this clip has us going south on Broadway - including the 100 block that goes under the Coliseum decking. The block of Broadway from 3rd to Pete Rose Way dates only from the riverfront reconstruction circa 2000. Before then, it lined up with the 100 block. And until about 1970, the Central Bridge (which was later replaced by the Taylor-Southgate) emerged slightly to the west of where it did later.

By the way, I have no idea what the cartoonish fart-like noise in this video is from. I think I ran over a ketchup or mustard packet.




My Focus on Locust kicks off on this disappointing trail, which runs south off 16th along the Licking River in Covington (behind the floodwall). This unpaved hiking and cycling trail was a bust because it went essentially nowhere, making a dead end in a clearing. In fact, the trail had apparently existed for decades, but the city kept it under wraps until 2009. (The trail clearly appears on a 1956 aerial photo.)

In roadly news, the trail here was likely the path of the long-lost Water Street before the floodwall was built.




Signs along the trail mark this as a "scenic" view of the Licking River. About the most scenic thing here is that ancient yellow GAS LINE sign in the foreground.




This clip starts on Decoursey Avenue (KY 177) at 45th in Covington and enters Taylor Mill via the Banklick Creek bridge that was built around 1977. When we cross Grand Avenue, we veer onto a mysterious side road through the CSX rail yard. I took that road for 4 miles - which is a big deal for an industrial access road. The fence at 3:52 is for some type of building that juts into the Licking River - possibly a sewage handling facility. Because of the length of the road, this video is part 1 of a pair.




Part 2 of my CSX access road footage. This went on for so long that I sped up part of this clip. The highway we cross under is I-275. But I pulled one over on the Far Right - by not going back the same way!




See what I mean about this access road going on forever? By this point, I'm getting nervous about being in a forbidden zone and being boxed in by police cars. Life in a police state will do that to you.




Still along the rail access road, this appears to be the ruins of an old house. Now we're running parallel to Locust Pike, opposite Red Row Lane. When this house was occupied, how did residents get there without using that access road?




A very candid shot, continuing along CSX's precious road.




I think this strange tunnel under the rail line is on what maps label as either Progress Drive or Profit Drive. (Now there's a contradictory set of names!) We've got to be done with this stretch now, right?




Wait, we're not done!




Only when I was leaving did I know for sure I was violating an Allowed Cloud all along. This is looking back at the gate at the southern end of the access road (off Locust Pike). There was no sign at the north entrance keeping me out. That's how they get ya!




Now we're entering Ryland Heights. Though it's an incorporated place, Ryland Heights includes a lot of rural land. (Can Highland Heights sue Ryland Heights for plagiarism?) This is south on Locust Pike (KY 1930), approaching Feiser Road.




Exemplifying the rural character of this outing, this is continuing on Locust Pike. Note Kentucky's recent practice of putting grooves on the shoulders to keep bicyclists from using them.




Further still on Locust Pike. (Still KY 1930!)




Locust Pike again! And yes, that's a horseback rider warning sign up ahead.




Locust Pike crosses the rail line we all know and love.




I don't call it my Focus on Locust for nothing. This is still Locust Pike - and still a state route.




Continuing on Locust Pike. Right here, however, we lose KY 1930 - which instead winds uphill on Whites Road. This was once an unincorporated place called Grant, before encroachment by suburban municipalities.




Locust Pike goes uphill a bit towards a dead end. Right before the stretch of Locust Pike in this clip, there was a small spot where the air was filled with a weird crackling noise that sounded like it could have been stray voltage from the power lines. I tried recording it, but the camera couldn't pick up this sound, for it must have been at such a strange frequency. This video follows Locust Pike almost to the end of the road.




Now we're headed back the other way. This is downstream (north) on the mighty Licking, at a ramp that emerges from a park along Locust Pike. Beads of fecal coliform were floating down the river. I remember how one of my 8th grade classmates talked about how his grandfather waded in the river up to his chin, with his mouth open, when a floater floated along.




Returning home on Locust Pike, just north of the rail crossing.




Back in Cov! This is north on Decoursey Avenue (KY 16), at Daniels Street. (Not Disaster Daniels. Just Daniels.) I took this photo because of the object that appears to be a toilet wrapped in blue plastic.

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