FORT WAYNE — The paved trails in the Fort Wayne area — 109 miles of them so far — radiate from the city center like five evenly placed spokes on a wagon wheel. Three follow the St. Marys, St. Joseph and Maumee rivers that converge here. Several smaller trails connect like spurs or float on their own like satellites.
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One day, I follow a local guide as we bike from broad sidewalks to trails southwest from downtown, following signs as the Towpath Trail leads us to Eagle Marsh, a 756-acre restored wetland.
Another day, I track northeast past the Historic Fort Wayne, a recreated fort from the 1800s on the St. Marys, and then, by the city water treatment plant, I look up at a statue of a Jesuit priest and scientist who some believe named the three rivers — his outstretched arm points to their confluence. I link onto the Rivergreenway as it curls by the St. Joseph atop a levee and reach Johnny Appleseed Park where, just beyond the city campground, I find the park’s namesake. His grave and stone memorial is rimmed by apple trees……..