I truly love listening to music of many genres. I also absolutely love the privilege of working out on the Little Miami Scenic Trail. What I don’t love is combining the two. Today’s high tech, lightweight and custom fit headphones coupled with smartphones provide for high quality listening on the go. And yet, when I use the trail, whether walking, running, bicycling or roller skiing, I want to hear nothing but a combination of nature, silence and my own breathing. For safety purposes, I want to give my full attention and to listen to what’s happening around me, especially to see and hear vehicles at intersections and other trail users engaged in various activities as they approach me from the front or rear.
Rules established by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources forbid the wearing of headphones or earphones while bicycling on the trail and understandably so. Even relatively slow cyclists move fast enough that distractions or failure to hear can result in serious consequences. While trail users other than cyclists are permitted to wear headphones, doing so can be just as risky. For example, lack of attention or hearing may lead you to step into the path of a fast-approaching cyclist or vehicle.
One major draw of the Little Miami Scenic Trial is its beautiful sights and sounds, sounds emanating from the murmuring river, calling birds and rustling squirrels. Listen carefully to this advice; when using the trail, leave your headphones at home and enjoy the relaxing sounds of nature.
by Erick Wikum
image: AfterShokz – Titanium Wireless Bone Conduction Open-Ear Headphones, BestBuy.com