Thermal Belt Rail Trail

A perfect day for a bike ride – great weather for sure – so we started mid-morning at a trailhead parking lot in front of a local school entrance.

At less busy road crossings:

We started in Forest City and rode through several small towns: Spindale, Rutherfordton, Ruth, Broad River to the end at Gilvey.

Exercise station:

Time to slow down for unpredictable summer camp trail users:

When we arrived in Gilkey at MM 0, we stopped to talk with Tim Will and RJ, local residents who are active in their community. They are also the kind of person who takes the time to have a conversation with trail users who are not locals – that’s a good thing in my book!

MM 0 – time to turn around.

On the way back I stopped at Bechtler Mint Site Historic Park. From 1831-1840, Christopher Bechtler operated the nation’s most successful private mint, turning raw gold into $3 million worth of coins and ingots.

View from the top of the hill at the park:

27 miles. Great trail, flawless asphalt and 12ft wide. Road crossings sometimes required extra attention and caution. Fantastic ride.

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