"There may be no secrets in small towns, but there are no strangers wither." ~ R.A. Mathis
John’s Trail is a short trail that runs through Amanda. It isn’t a destination walking or biking trail. But if you are a local resident, it is a nice place to get some exercise. However, there are plans in the works to connect it to the Fairfield Heritage Trail (Lancaster Trail System). This will be great for those who love to get out and bike. Biking on State Route 22 is dangerous. The new trail addition is expected to run along 22 which will make for a safer commute.
The existing trail is fairly flat and easy to walk. It measures approx. 1.75 miles in one direction. It consists of natural dirt areas, grass, limestone, blacktop and crushed asphalt. There is very little shade and it can get extremely hot walking through the open fields. So, dress accordingly and take plenty of water.
John’s Trail in Amanda begins on Sand Hill Road. There isn’t a parking lot. Finding a place to park can be somewhat difficult. However, there is a restaurant a little way up the street. Stop in and grab a bite to eat and let them know that you are planning on walking the path. We left our car there with no problem at all. There is also a roller rink right next to the path.
Once you finally make it to the trail head, you can go left or right. The trail to the right heads through a small patch of trees. It is only about 900’ long. Heading to the left you will be on the main trail. It begins off as blacktop and runs behind Midwest Fabricating. There is one bench near the beginning. After you pass the manufacturing facility, the trail is grass and dirt.
The trail isn’t well-marked. Instead of going straight through the grain mill parking lot make a right down to W. High Street. Go about 400’ then make a left on Fredericks Street. This will take you to Main Street. Cross Main Street and go left. The trail starts again across from the grain mill.
The trail is composed of crushed limestone in this area. It is straight and runs through a cornfield. Near the end, you will pass the village water fields. Right after the fields are a bench and a trashcan situated in a group of trees. After walking through the field in direct sunlight, these trees are a sight for sore eyes. The trail surface changes again. It is now made up of recycled asphalt. The trail loops around the trees and heads you back to the beginning.
At the back of the loop is an old railroad bridge that is hard to see once the vegetation has grown up. Do not try to cross this bridge. It is in terrible shape and is very dangerous.
Amanda sits out in the middle of the country and is surrounded by woods and farmland. These are great conditions for all types of wildlife. Even though we walked John’s Trail in the heat of the day, there were a lot of birds. And we could hear scurrying in the undergrowth.
John’s Trail is a nice trail for local residents. We wouldn’t suggest making it a destination. However, it you are stopping by The Village Food and Spirits restaurant or live nearby, it is a nice trail to get in a 3.5-mile walk or a quick bike ride. Hopefully it isn't long before it is attached to the Fairfield Heritage Trail.
What You Can Expect at John's Trail
Please note that trail rules and regulations can change at any time. The following information was in effect for John's Trail as of May 2020.
Bicycles are permitted.
There were quite a few birds. Most were at the beginning near Amanda Roller Rink and the end near the village water fields.
Concealed carry is permitted.
Pets are permitted.
Trail surface changes several times.
No parking lot.
No picnic tables.
There is a bench at the beginning of the trail and one at the end.
Very little shade.
No shelter house.
Trail isn't marked well.
There was a trashcan at the end of the trail.
No ADA parking spots.