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The 10 Easiest Hikes In Ohio That Have The Best Pay Offs

Sometimes, the journey to witnessing breathtaking views doesn’t require an exhaustive trek. Ohio is home to picturesque trails that are not only easy to navigate but also incredibly rewarding.

From ADA-compliant paths to trails with plenty of resting spots, here’s a list of the 10 easiest hikes in Ohio that promise stunning vistas.

Ash Cave at Hocking Hills State Park

Ash cave in hocking hills
Photo by Chelsea Wiley

Ash Cave boasts an awe-inspiring recess cave nestled in Hocking Hills State Park. This short, half-mile trail leads you through a lush forest to Ohio’s largest recess cave. The towering overhang and cascading waterfall at the trail’s end create a serene backdrop, perfect for photographers and nature enthusiasts alike.
More info: Ash Cave

Brandywine Falls at Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Brandywine falls
via Facebook

Brandywine Falls is one of Ohio’s most spectacular natural sites, accessible via a brief but scenic 1.5-mile boardwalk trail. This magnificent 65-foot waterfall, surrounded by layers of rock, is a highlight of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and an easy trek for families and casual hikers seeking a quick yet rewarding nature escape.
More info: Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Conkle’s Hollow Gorge Trail in Hocking Hills

hocking hills fall foliage
via Wikipedia

This easy 1-mile loop trail takes you through one of the most stunning gorges in Ohio. Conkle’s Hollow Gorge Trail is lined with towering cliffs, lush ferns, and unique rock formations. It’s a tranquil spot where hikers can immerse themselves in nature’s beauty without venturing too far from comfort.
More info: Conkle’s Hollow

Horseshoe Falls at Caesar Creek State Park

horseshoe falls at caesar creek state park
via Facebook

Nestled within Caesar Creek State Park, Horseshoe Falls offers a peaceful retreat on an easy-to-navigate path. This quaint waterfall can be reached through a short hike, making it an ideal destination for a leisurely stroll amidst nature. The surrounding area also provides perfect picnic spots to relax and enjoy the scenery.
More info: Caesar Creek State Park

Sweetgum Trail at Walnut Woods Metro Park

walnut woods metro park
Sweetgum Trail, a smooth, flat path, is perfect for a tranquil walk in the woods. Spanning just over a mile, this trail showcases the beauty of Walnut Woods Metro Park with its tall Sweetgum trees and vibrant birdlife, making it an excellent choice for bird watchers and nature lovers.
More info: Walnut Woods Metro Park

Summit Metro Parks Overlook Trail at Cascade Valley

overlook trail scenic view
via Facebook

Experience breathtaking views of the Cuyahoga River without a strenuous hike on the Overlook Trail. This short, accessible path leads to an observation deck offering expansive vistas of the river and surrounding forest. It’s a quick escape to nature that feels worlds away from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
More info: Summit Metro Parks

Geneva Orange Trail at Geneva State Park

sunset at geneva state park
via Facebook

Geneva State Park’s Orange Trail is a gentle, 2-mile loop that skirts the park’s perimeter, offering varied landscapes from forested areas to lakefront views. It’s an easy hike with minimal elevation change, making it perfect for a leisurely afternoon walk, with plenty of opportunities to spot local wildlife.
More info: Geneva State Park

Everybody’s Treehouse Trail at Mount Airy State Park

everybody's treehouse
Photo by Cathy, via Flickr

This unique trail leads to a universally accessible treehouse, offering a whimsical touch to your hiking adventure. The path to Everybody’s Treehouse is short and paved, ensuring that everyone, regardless of mobility, can enjoy the magic of being high amongst the trees.
More info: Mt. Airy Forest

Big Walnut Trail at Hoover Reservoir Park

hoover dam in Ohio
Photo by Kevin Payravi on Wikimedia Commons. (CC BY-SA 4.0)

For those who enjoy waterfront views, the Big Walnut Trail offers a serene hike along the shores of Hoover Reservoir. This easy trail is well-maintained and provides beautiful views of the water and surrounding woodland, making it a peaceful retreat for hikers of all ages.
More info: Hoover Reservoir Park

Marblehead Lighthouse at Marblehead Lighthouse State Park

marblehead lighthouse
via Wikimedia Commons. (CC BY-SA 4.0)

The trail leading to Marblehead Lighthouse may be more of a leisurely stroll than a hike, but the payoff is the historic lighthouse itself and the stunning views over Lake Erie. This iconic landmark, surrounded by picturesque grounds, is perfect for a family outing or a romantic walk.
More info: Marblehead Lighthouse State Park