You don’t always have to be a fit, well-seasoned backpacker to explore some of Ohio’s most beautiful trails. In fact, there are many beautiful sights to behold in Ohio’s forests, metro-parks and state parks that don’t require a lot of time or exertion to get to. The following are eight incredible hikes in Ohio that nearly anyone can do.
1. Cascade Falls Trail (Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park)
This short .5 mile trail leads to an impressive waterfall, complete with a short boardwalk and observation deck below the falls.
2. Brandywine Falls (Cuyahoga Valley National Park)
Walk down the wooden pathways and stairs to see the beautiful, easily accessible Brandywine Falls in Cuyahoga Valley National Park at 8176 Brandywine Road in Sagamore Hills Township. Near the falls, the 1.5-mile Brandywine Gorge Trail allows you to explore beyond the waterfall and see other views of the creek.
3. Rowe Woods Trails (Rowe Woods)
Within the Cincinnati Nature Center, you can find this easy to hike loop trail in Rowe Woods, which features an abundance of wildlife and beautiful plants along the way. It is approximately 1.8 miles long.
4. Wilderness Trail (The Edge of Appalachia Preserve)
The Edge of Appalachia Preserve in Adams County is best known for its biological diversity, steep cliffs and the Wilderness Trail; a 2 1/2-mile loop that's perfect for a one-day hike.
5. Old Man's Cave Loop and Ash Cave Trails (Hocking Hills State Park)
April Dray/Only In Your State
What is arguably Ohio's most scenic hiking trail is approximately 1 mile long and can be completed in about one hour. In addition to Old Man's Cave, you'll encounter the Devil's Bathtub, Sphinx Head, A-Frame Bridge and the Upper and Lower Falls. The nearby Ash Cave Trails feature a .25 mile long Gorge Trail that is wheelchair accessible, as well as a .5 mile long Rim Trail.
6. Charleston Falls Preserve (Tipp City)
Best seen after a good rain, this waterfall can be found in Charleston Falls Preserve in Miami County. The trail system within the park loops around and consists of about 4 miles total.
7. Hebron Trail (Ohio Canal Greenway)
This recreational trail in Licking County is located on the old Penn Central Railroad right-of-way, just south of the village of Hebron. It is approximately 2.7 miles long, and features farmland scenery and a charming covered bridge along the way.
8. Ottawa-Magee Partnership Trail (Magee Marsh Wildlife Refuge)
Arguably the state's top bird-wathcing spot—featuring more than 300 species of birds—you can find this peaceful refuge along western Lake Erie, between Toledo and Port Clinton. The Ottawa-Magee Partnership Trail is approximately 1 mile long.
Have you hiked any of these trails before? What other hikes in Ohio are fairly easy to do?