Parks and Trails

Clinton County, Ohio residents enjoy access to a wide array of recreational activities at the area State Parks, Trails, Nature Preserves, and Wildlife areas. Whether you like hiking, sailing, cycling, hunting, or fishing, you will find your recreational pastime within a short drive from home. The city of Wilmington and some of the villages offer community parks and recreation programs for all ages. So get out there and enjoy the great outdoors!



Parks
Caesar Creek State Park
8570 OH-73
Waynesville,
OH
45068
View Location

A large sprawling lake, sunny meadows, and a wooded ravine await visitors at Caesar Creek. Boaters will find all the amenities for a great day on the water, including a marina, several launch ramps, and dock rentals. A large campground provides campers with cozy sites and modern facilities. The Hopewell Day Lodge is a great venue for family gatherings. Other activities include fishing, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and archery.

Caesar Creek Lake Wildlife Area is located in southwestern Ohio, at the junction of Clinton, Greene, and Warren counties. State Route 73 bisects the reservoir and crosses Corwin-New Burlington Road which provides access to the wildlife area from the south. Lumberton-New Burlington and Mound Roads reach the area from the southeast. In Greene County, Cemetery, Roxanna-New Burlington, and St. Rt. 380 provide access from the north and west. Clarksville and Oregonia Roads provide access from the south. The 3,100-acre wildlife area lies scattered at Caesar Creek Lake, a flood control reservoir operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. In summer, the reservoir is normally 2,830 acres. During periods of heavy rainfall, the reservoir covers portions of the normally dry wildlife area. Caesar Creek State Park, 7,086 acres, is on both sides of the reservoir. Meadow and grain crops cover about 50 percent of the wildlife area and woodlands make up about 40 percent. The remainder is reverting fields--a mixture of shrubs, small trees, grasses, and forbs.


Cowan Lake State Park
1750 Osborn Rd
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Cowan Lake State Park offers a peaceful lake setting complete with scenic inlets and wooded shoreline. Swimming, fishing, sailing, and kayaking are popular here. Trails wind through mature woodlands. Overnight guests can choose from deluxe family cabins or the cozy campground — all within a short walk or bike ride to the beach and camp store.

Note: Improvements to the wastewater collection system in the campground area is scheduled for this winter. Campsites close October 25 and cabins close December 1. Anticipated completion is May 2021. As the project is completed and areas are restored, campsites and cabins will come available for reservation.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources- Cowan Lake State Park


Denver Williams Parks
162-198 Park Dr.
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

The land was donated by J.W. Denver and Dorothy S. Williams in memory of their son who was killed in WWII.

This is the primary activity facility within our park system. All of the structured programs that are offered take place at this park. Also many of the family-oriented facilities are located in this park. All year round one can find some type of activity going on. Annual activities include the City of Wilmington Fourth of July Celebration, the Banana Split Festival, and Relay for Life. See you at the park!


Galvin Park, Wilmington
82 E Birdsall St
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Situated across the street from the Wilmington Public Library, Galvin Park is one of the City of Wilmington's community parks. Donated by Mrs. Brady Galvin, this park is always popular during the winter when families gather to enjoy sledding, snowboarding, and gathering in the shelter house for hot chocolate. During the spring and summer, the playground is a popular spot for area children, and the shelter house is reserved for picnics and meetings. Basketball courts at the bottom of the hill are one of the Park's most popular features. Galvin Park is the site of the former Smith Place School, and the stone arch from the entrance is an architectural relic placed at the top of the hill alongside a commemorative plaque highlighting the history of the school. A Gazebo on top of the hill was donated by the Jaycees as a memorial for two of their members who died in a plane crash. This Park also has many trees, a playground, and a bench dedicated to former City residents and noted by plaques. 


John Bryan State Park
3790 State Route 370
Yellow Springs,
OH
45387
View Location

Located in Greene County but within a 30-minute drive from Clinton County. Beautiful year-round, the park's breathtaking scenery attracts visitors in every season. John Bryan is distinguished by its remarkable limestone gorge, which was cut by the Little Miami State and National Scenic River. The gorge, which is a National Natural Landmark, offers hikers splendid views from the trail. A launch area outside the park provides paddlers with access to the river.


Little Hearts Big Smiles Playground
1400 Fife Avenue
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Little Hearts Big Smiles was created in 2006 as a supportive outlet for families raising special needs children.  We felt it was important to establish a group of families who could come and learn from one another, help one another cope and also raise awareness.   We service the entire family by providing educational opportunities for parents and planning fun activities for kids.  

In 2008 we partnered with the Clinton County Foundation to become a not for profit.  As the needs of our founding members changed, we realized a need for accessible play spaces in Southwest Ohio.  Volunteers have worked tirelessly to not only continue the original efforts of providing support to families but also raise funds and build a playground in Clinton County.  The playground is located on Fife Avenue in Wilmington, Ohio. 

Little Hearts Big Smiles Website


Little Miami State Park
39 South Maple Street
Waynesville,
OH
45068
View Location

The Little Miami State and National Scenic River offers bikers and paddlers a trip into one of Ohio's most beautiful and historic areas. Visitors can traverse the 50-mile linear park by water, on the Little Miami State and Natural Scenic River, or on land via the Little Miami Scenic Bikeway Trail.


Southeast Neighborhood Park
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

This land was purchased by the City to develop a neighborhood park.

Basketball is the biggest drawing point in this park. There are more courts and hoops at this park than any other park we own. Playground equipment, a picnic shelter and a baseball diamond provide plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy.


Stonelick State Park
2895 Lake Drive
Pleasant Plain,
OH
45162
View Location

Tucked away in the rolling highlands of southwest Ohio, 1,058-acre Stonelick State Park offers a quiet retreat for visitors. The still waters of the lake and stately woodlands provide the setting for a host of outdoor recreational pursuits.


Trails
4-C Bicentennial Trail

This trail was built as a partnership between the City, the County, Wilmington College and the Clinton County Trails Coalition. Built in honor of the State's Bicentennial (2003), it was laid out by trail advocate Lori Williams and designed by Clinton County Engineer Jeff Linkous. It is wooded, gently rolling and has three bridges. The westernmost bridge is the Boy Scout service project of Brice Carpenter. Another bridge, known as the "Farm Bridge", was resurfaced with the addition of handrails as the Eagle Scout project of Chase Yeakley. The west trailhead is at the Southeast Neighborhood Park with entrances/exits from Marlena Dr. and Paris Ave. The eastern trailhead is on Fife Avenue next to the Clinton County Engineer's office, 1326 Fife Ave. (across the street from David Williams Park). Parking is available at both trailheads on city park property. While scooter users regularly use this trail, wheelchair and scooter users are advised to use caution and discuss conditions with the City Parks Director (382-4781) due to the grade in a couple of places on the trail.

Click here for interactive trail maps


Clinton Fayette Friendship Trail
Melvin Road
Clinton,
OH
View Location

Clinton - Fayette Friendship Trail - December 2011 & February 2012

- There is 7.1 miles of abandoned railroad corridor in Clinton County and 19 miles of abandoned railroad corridor in Fayette County.

- The land area in Clinton County is 75.2 acres, while Fayette County land is 148 acres.

- The plan is to construct a paved multiuse trail from Melvin Rd. in Clinton County through Sabina, Jasper Mills, Washington Court House to New Holland in Pickaway County to connect to the Ohio State Rails to Trails system.

- This trail system would provide many health, economic, historical, and recreation benefits to the residents of both counties.


Judy Gano Bike Path
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

This trail was opened in 2008 and is named after community activist and attorney Judy Gano. This trail connects the 4-C Bicentennial Trail with the sidewalk on Rombach Avenue, providing an important link to the Lowes Drive Trail and a future Citywide trails system. Note the Indian Trails marker near the Castle Playground parking area, an Eagle Scout project of Cody Clifton.

The Judy Gano Trail travels the length of the J.W. Denver Williams Memorial Park in Wilmington, Ohio. The trail begins on Rombach Avenue and travels past the skate park, tennis courts, and baseball diamond to a bridge over the pond, before ending at Fife Avenue. Though the trail is short, it's an important link in Wilmington's growing trail network that will one day encircle the city. At Rombach Avenue, the Judy Gano Trail provides access to the Lowe's Drive Trail, 0.6-mile shared-use path. You can also extend your journey west, by taking the 1.3 mile 4-C Bicentennial Trail. West of that trail, you can use the urban connector (combination on-street bike route and sidewalks) to reach the Luther Warren Peace Path.


Little Miami State Park
39 South Maple Street
Waynesville,
OH
45068
View Location

The Little Miami State and National Scenic River offers bikers and paddlers a trip into one of Ohio's most beautiful and historic areas. Visitors can traverse the 50-mile linear park by water, on the Little Miami State and Natural Scenic River, or on land via the Little Miami Scenic Bikeway Trail.


Lowes Drive Path
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Opened 2004, this 0.7 mile asphalt connector path, this trail connects Rombach Avenue (near J. Denver Williams Park) with Prairie Avenue. The City plans a future paved surface trail winding through J. Denver Williams Park to connect the Lowe’s Drive Path with the 4-C Bicentennial Trail. No services are available on the Lowe’s Drive Path, but water, parking and restrooms are available in J. Denver Williams Park, which is .1 mile from the intersection of Lowe’s Drive and Rombach Avenue. Enter J. Denver Williams Park from Rombach Avenue (on the north) or Fife Avenue (on the south).


Luther E Warren Peace Path
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Enjoy a wooded canopy as you walk this beautiful trail, the first to be built in the City (in 1999).  The “Peace Path” as it is known locally crosses two bridges including a covered bridge built by Eagle Scout Jonah Hein and named after local naturalist Dr. Nathan Hale.  The second bridge was named after E.E. McKibben, a long-time trail advocate who was instrumental in building this trail.  It was resurfaced with the addition of handrails as the Eagle Scout service project of Micah Hein.  The Luther Warren Peace Path is almost completely level and accommodating to wheelchair, scooter or stroller users.


Nature Preserves
Anliot Davidson Nature Preserve
885 Pyle Road
Clarksville,
OH
45113
View Location

Anliot-Davidson Nature Preserve was the second CCPD park, founded in October 2002 in Adams Township. It was named in honor of Wilmington College biology professor Fred Anliot for his impact on students and residents, and his concern for the environment. In addition to Anliot, Bob and Glenda Davidson are credited in the name of the park as the previous owners. The Davidsons tended to the forest after purchasing it in the mid-1960s and sold the property below market value to the CCPD in 2002. The CCPD was able to secure a competitive $50,000 grant to purchase the place. After acquiring the property, the CCPD built a parking lot, bridges, benches, and a variety of trail markers. With 58 acres of rolling topography dominated by a mixed forest of deciduous hardwoods and evergreens, the park boasts beauty as well as biodiversity. There is a paved parking lot with five benches, an information display, and two waste containers. There are 0.8 miles of hiking trails, with three different types: white, yellow, and blue. White and yellow trails are strenuous with steep inclines. There is a rich biodiversity of ferns (12 species), trees (51 species), and many wildflowers and birds. A demonstration prairie is surrounding the parking lot offering 18 species of wildflowers among warm-season grasses.

885 Pyle Road - 1 mi. east of Clarksville Road and Pyle Road in Adams Township. 58 acres of steep rolling topography dominated by a mixed forest of deciduous hardwoods and evergreens with white CCPD boundary posts. 0.8 miles of hiking trails. Limited bow hunting by written permission of the park board. Open to the public for passive recreation. Contact Bob Thobaben for further information (937) 382-4739.


Collett Woods Nature Preserve
8901 SR 73 W
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

On July 1, 2000, Collett Woods became the first property to be dedicated by the CCPD. The park was part of 4,000 acres granted to Pvt. Daniel Collett of the 1st Virginia Regiment for Revolutionary War Services. He moved to Clinton County from Virginia in 1805 with his wife, seven sons, and one daughter. Wallace Collett, a descendant of Daniel Collett, donated the preserve to the CCPD for the enjoyment of Clinton County Residents. Located in Chester Township with 60 acres of mature beech-maple forest. It offers 1.2 miles of hiking trails, a paved parking lot with a turnaround, and a bridge at the entrance. There are wonderful wildflower communities, along with several examples of large hunks of Canadian granite erratic rocks deposited in the preserve that can be seen along the 1.25 mile hiking loop that circles the forest perimeter. Several small mammal species exist in the preserve such as the Eastern Mole, Short-Tailed Shrew, Least Shrew, and White-Footed Mouse, which provide prey for Red and Gray Foxes, Coyotes, and birds of prey. Over 58 species of birds are known to breed within one mile of these woods with at least 100+ species migrating through the preserve in the fall and spring migration. In short, Collett woods is also a Beech Maple climax forest which has not been disturbed, except by a tornado in 1986. The damage the tornado caused to trees can still be observed.

- 8901 West State Route 73, 1.5 miles west of the Caesar Creek Flea Market in Chester Township
 


Culberson State Nature Preserve
8865 State Rt. 730
Clarksville,
OH
45113
View Location

Culberson State Nature Preserve:

This 280-acre preserve is one of the largest remnants of the distinctive "Wet Beech Forest" which once covered the flatlands of southwestern Ohio. The first 40-acre parcel of the preserve was a gift from Mrs. Myra Culberson in 1978 in honor of her late husband, Dean A. Culberson. The forest grows on poorly drained, white clay soil which formed on the glacial materials deposited during the Illinoian glacial period.

The swamp forest is dominated by red maple and pin oak with substantial stands of shagbark hickory, shellbark hickory, swamp white oak, American elm and sweet gum. The northern shrub, winterberry, grows here near its southern limit, while the sweet gum, a southern species, is near its northern limit. Summer wildflowers include purple fringeless orchid and cardinal flower.

The preserve is located in Clinton County approximately 1 mile southwest of Cowan Lake State Park. From S.R. 350, proceed south 1 mile on S.R. 730 to the preserve entrance. No facilities are available. For additional information, contact Cowan Lake State Park at (937) 382-1096.


Dr Nathan Hale Woods & Preserve
2979 Clarksville Rd
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

- 2979 Clarksville Rd. at the intersection of Cowan Creek Rd in Vernon Township
- 60 acres of riparian corridor along Cowan Creek with a gravel parking lot, information display, 3 benches, 2 waste containers and 1.25 miles of hiking trail along the scenic Cowan Creek
- Identified by the Ohio Biological Survey conducted in July of 1955 and again in July, 1978 as the most unique area of Clinton County.
- Great fishing during the Spring and early Summer,
important bird area as designated by the National Audubon Society.
- Devils Backbone area recognized for its rich biodiversity of plants.
- Healthy amphibian, reptile, and wild turkey populations along the creek valley.


East Fork Riparian Nature Preserve
935 Webertown Road
Lynchburg,
OH
45152
View Location

East Fork Riparian Reserve
- 935 Webertown Road in Clark Township
- 70 acres one mile east of the Oak Grove Rd and Webertown Rd
intersection. There is a paved parking lot for 6 cars but no amenities.
- 2.5 miles of hiking trails around a short grass prairie,
tall grass prairie, and early successional flood plain.
Acres of wild flowers are dominant during the months of June through August.
- Six distinct plant communities are represented in the park.
- Two wetlands were constructed by the US Fish
and Wildlife Service during the summer of 2007. The USFWS
provides the prairie seed to convert degraded farmland into permanent grassland. - Good fishing along the East Fork of the Little Miami River is possible
- Limited bow hunting with written permission of the park board.


Fallsville Wildlife Area
10211 Careytown Rd
New Vienna,
OH
45159
View Location

Fallsville South Wildlife Area is in southwest Ohio, 4 miles north of Hillsboro. Located between West Lane and Careytown Road and approximately 1.5 miles south of the Fallsville Wildlife Area Headquarters, the 379-acre Wildlife Area is a combination of fields, rolling hills, pine stands, and hardwoods. A beautiful eight-acre lake is located in the center of the area. The lake is 29 feet at its deepest point with an average depth of 13 to 14 feet.

History & Purpose

The Division of Wildlife purchased and began management of this property in 2003. The primary purpose of the area is public hunting and fishing, wildlife viewing, and hiking as well as habitat management and wildlife research. Habitat management will focus on establishing native prairie plantings, improving timber stands, and providing wildlife food plots.

Recreational Opportunities

Hunters will find good opportunities for deer, turkey, quail, rabbit, squirrel, dove, and waterfowl. Deer and squirrel can be found in the woodlots. Turkeys often use the stand of pines to roost. Quail and rabbits are common in the native prairie plantings and field edges. Designated dove hunting fields are established on an annual basis. Ducks and geese can often be found using the eight-acre lake. Pheasants will NOT be released on this area. Bluegill and largemouth bass fishing is excellent in the eight-acre lake. The fishing is catch and release only, which will ensure a quality fishing opportunity. The use of barbless hooks is encouraged to ensure the survival of released fish. Trapping opportunities exist for muskrat, mink, raccoon, and coyote.


FER Woodland Nature Preserve

Glen Helen Nature Preserve
405 Corry St
Yellow Springs,
OH
45387
View Location

Glen Helen Nature Preserve trails are open from dawn to dusk.

The Raptor Center is currently open to the public from 9:00am-5:00pm.  

Parking at 405 Corry St. in Yellow Springs will continue to be free for Glen Helen Association members, $5 for others. Buildings, including restrooms, remain closed, so please plan accordingly. Public restrooms are available in downtown Yellow Springs at the Train Station building that houses the Chamber of Commerce, 101 Dayton St.

GLEN HELEN WEBSITE


Indian Creek Wildlife Area
4258 Snowhill Rd
Fayetteville,
OH
45118
View Location

Indian Creek Wildlife Area is a 1,695-acre state wildlife area located 1 mile southeast of Fayetteville. The property is in Brown county. Acquisition of the Indian Creek Wildlife Area began in 1954 and continued through 1976. The property was acquired using multiple state funds. Wildlife Restoration federal funding was used to acquire the property.    

Shooting Range

Indian Creek Wildlife Area Shooting Range


Lytle Creek Nature Preserve
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

The Lytle Creek Nature Preserve is comprised of 127 acres of natural area that lies within the boundaries of St. Rt. 134 S., Wilmington College and the 4-C Bicentennial Trail.  The preserve is accessed via a footbridge at the approximate midpoint of the 4-C Bicentennial Trail, near the wooded area.

The preserve offers the opportunity to see many animals in their natural habitat; birds, deer, pheasant, quail and wild turkeys can be observed.  Wildflowers have been sown on 62 acres of the tract and it is planned for natural surfaced trails to be established throughout certain sections of the preserve.

The water quality of Lytle Creek and erosion control methods are being studied.

This beautiful park provides a setting for educational opportunities as well as opportunities for civic and neighborhood service projects.

The Lytle Creek Greenway Trail...

Starts from the Trailhead Pavilion on Davids Drive and follows Lytle Creek downstream from its headwaters to the point where it joins the 4C Bicentennial Bike Path. There are benches along the way, including one at the weir notch, the first soil and water conservation to be carried out in Clinton County.


Oldaker Wildlife Area
US 50
Hillsboro,
OH
45133
View Location

Location and Description    

Oldaker Wildlife Area is a 140-acre state wildlife area located 7 miles west of Hillsboro. The property is in Highland county. 

History and Purpose    

Acquisition of the Oldaker Wildlife Area began in 1944 and continued through 1945. The property was acquired using multiple state funds. Wildlife Restoration federal funding was used to acquire the property. It is easily reached from U.S. Route 50, six miles west of Oldaker Wildlife Area Hillsboro, by traveling one mile northeast on County Road 6-C. The area lies on the northwest side of the road just south of the village of Russell. One parking lot is located on the south side of the area.


Spring Valley Wildlife Area
1863 Rox-N Burlington Rd
Waynesville,
OH
45068
View Location

The Spring Valley Wildlife Area is in both Greene and Warren Counties, and a short drive from the western part of Clinton County. This 842-acre wildlife area is situated in the gently rolling agricultural region of southwest Ohio just east of the Little Miami River, eight miles south of Xenia, and four miles north of Waynesville. The area may be reached by turning east off U.S. Route 42 onto Roxanna-New Burlington Road. More than one-third of the area is in cropland and permanent meadow intermixed with brushy fencerows and extensive brushy coverts. Woods cover approximately a third of the area. A 150-acre lake and marsh complex are located on the area’s south edge and a magnet for birdwatchers, naturalists, and artists. 


Wilmington College Hazard Arboretum
820-856 Elm St.
Wilmington,
OH
45177
View Location

Once a cornfield on the edge of the campus, a 13.43-acre plot of land has been an integral part of Wilmington College for more than half a century. The peaceful, beautiful place to visit and working lab for students hosts some 250 wood plants, shrubs, and trees.

It was during the presidency of Sam Marble in 1958 when the idea of establishing an arboretum was originally proposed to the College’s Board of Trustees, but the death of longtime biology professor Frank O. Hazard (1905-63) in 1963 prompted James Read’s administration to jump full force into the project. It was determined the College arboretum would be a “living memorial” to Hazard, a 1927 WC graduate who was known as a “master teacher” during his 34 years on the science faculty from 1928 to 1962.