Hockhocking Adena Bikeway
The Hockhocking Adena Bikeway follows the path of the historic Columbus and Hocking Valley rail line which was completed in 1870. The path begins in front of the Athens Community Center on East State Street and passes by the Ohio University campus before proceeding into the wooded area along the Hocking River. The path leads from Athens all the way to Nelsonville. The bikeway offers visitors both nature and history.
Backstory and Context
The Hockhocking Adena Bikeway is a historical location, located on the old Columbus and Hocking Valley railroad bed. The rail line running between Columbus and Athens was completed in July 1870. Prior to the construction of the railroad, the location served as a towpath along the Hocking Canal, which was constructed between 1829 and 1842. This canal was used to transport agricultural products and other items to Carroll, Ohio where it met the Ohio-Erie Canal. The canal included 7 culverts, 26 locks, and one aqueduct which crossed Monday Creek south of Nelsonville.
The canal experienced repeated flooding causing severe damage in portions of the canal. Because of the damage, the railroad became the more favorable method of transportation. While traveling down the bikeway through Armitage north to Chauncey, remnants of the canal basin can still be seen.
The Hockhocking Adena Bikeway begins in front of the Athens Community Center on East State Street. The passes by the Ohio University campus and proceeds into the peaceful woods that run along the Hocking River. The path leads from Athens all the way to Nelsonville.
This 21-mile bikeway was named to honor those who first inhabited this part of southeastern Ohio. “Hockhocking” means “bottleneck” or “twisted”. This was the name of the native Shawnee name given to the Hocking River. The name “Adena” came from the Adena Indians who resided in the Hocking Valley over 2,000 years ago.