The Pumpkinvine Nature Trail is a developing bike trail about an hour south of Kalamazoo in northern Indiana's Amish area. Several sections of the trail are currently open around Goshen and Middlebury.
We started our ride in Goshen. The parking lot was easy to find on 5th street north of Lincoln Ave, but the trail wasn't immediately visible. It's tucked between a grain elevator and the industrial-looking city waterworks, right next to the train tracks, which, in hindsight, was perfectly logical since the trail was a railroad right-of-way. The trail quickly passed through the semi-industrial section, crossing Rock Run Creek on multiple bridges before reaching Abshire Park (which is an alternative starting point.) The trail surface was mostly asphalt but one section of a mile or so was crushed stone-- fine for bikes but not rollerblades.
The trail was surprisingly pretty, with more curves than a typical rail-trail. At times, it passed close to farm fields and in other places it ran through woods. This section of the trail ended at County Rd 33, about six miles from Goshen.
Another six mile section, running from Middlebury toward Shipshewana, was recently completed. Its official ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held September 20, 2011. When completed in a few years, the trail will run 17 miles connecting Shipshewana, Middlebury and Goshen.
I teach economics at Kalamazoo College. My wife is also an economist. We were on sabbatical in Europe for the 2014-15 academic year. (Salamanca, Spain, followed by Oxford, UK.) We were in Uruguay for the 2006-7 academic year.