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Great hiking experience. A few muddy/slick spots after a rain overnight. Nice moderate rated trail. Recommend hiking the loop counterclockwise as reviewed in other posts.

Fantastic all the way around. They recently re-routed a section of the Far Ridge Trail, but it is only a slight deviation from the standard route and clearly marked. Plenty of squirrels and chipmunks along the path to keep you company, and lots of visibility making it easy to admire the contour of the land. This is probably the nicest hiking trail in the Cincinnati area. The Rim Trail at Caesar Creek comes close, but probably only because of the views of the lake.

Just hiked the short loop on Tuesday morning. While the trail is scenic and moderate to easy in difficulty, it's a pretty unremarkable hike. We hiked along a small stream for a short time at the beginning of the loop but otherwise the trail was very muddy with minimal rock features. It's a nice walk though limited to pine forests and some stands of hardwoods. Bring in your own water if you go. On a more positive note, there are multiple nice campsites along the trail if you'rebackpacking.

This was a very scenic and well marked trail! We finished it yesterday and with the leaves changing, made it a beautiful hike!! I would do the Lakeshore Trail again!!!

One of my favorite hikes in Ohio. The views of the lake do not disappoint. The landscape changes various times to keep the hike very interesting. I hiked the trail counter clock wise.

This is the blog post and review written by my wife4.
https://hubpages.com/travel/Weekend-RV-Hiking-_at_-Lake-Vesuvius-Pedro-Ohio

Would have been nice to know about the cost to get in. I don't bring my wallet to go for a walk... just frustrated.

love trail running here!!!

My favorite trail in Southern Ohio! The initial incline is a rather difficult but totally worth it. Beautiful scenery and very tranquil, but also a great workout.

nature trips
2 months ago

Very under managed and muddy. However, there are some amazing views on this trail.

Great trail. Mostly easy, with some moderate uphill sections. A few places were not marked very well, and there were a few places where unmarked trails branch off of the main trail. My advice- stay the course and don't make a turn if you're not sure. Although I did walk some of these trails for a bit to see where they went, then doubled back. You might be able to get lost if you go too far. Of course a good walking stick is recommended for the spider webs that you will encounter. Markers say to allow 6 hours for this trail, but it's easily done in much less if you're a frequent hiker. Also, Shangri-la arch is collapsing so be careful in this area. There are arrows painted on the rocks to help guide you, just beware if you travel this area especially after heavy rain, there may be falling or loose rocks.

backpacking
2 months ago

Trail was very enjoyable, has been awhile since the trail has been marked, a lot of the time we had to follow the permitter trail (blue) markers because the red was so faded or nonexistent. We set up camp about 2 miles prior to camp 2 so we could do some fishing on the lake. The trail wasn’t so bad aside from the lack of markings till the loop, neither side was great but when it came to the south/west portion it didn’t look like it had been maintained for a long time. Was full of thorns, and downed trees.

Friends I was with decided to walk out to the road before we even finished the whole loop. I dropped my gear off near the road and ran the trail back to the trailhead. Doing both I would have to say I think using the trail for a day run instead of a backpacking trip would be more enjoyable.

it's our favorite local trail. having to have a paid membership keeps all of the riff raff out. they have lots of fun events too for members

camping
3 months ago

My friend and I camped one night and did the trail’s short loop. Parts of it are really muddy, so I would recommend wearing some waterproof shoes and bringing a change of socks. There were lots of campsites available, and it was easy to find! We had a great time!

Wow! Magical. We hiked it clockwise... But....
I WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND HIKING IT **COUNTERCLOCKWISE*** If you are starting at the dam, trailhead or kayak kiosk

I was rather tired by the time we got to the gems on the south side of the trail that I could not enjoy them as much if I would have been not as tired. You will thank me. I had read a suggestion to hike it counter clockwise but didn't do it.

Take some trunks. Swim.

Can be muddy in places. Recommend wearing hiking boots.

Not a bad hike at all. Good short one if you just want to get out. Campsites are really nice ...it was a bit muddy but overall a solid place to get away.

needs maintenance

I stayed at Iron Ridge last night, site 33 is awesome, and hiked the lake trail today. It's extremely well marked. Really beautiful. Easy enough to complete but still gives you a workout. I walked clockwise. This was great because there was a rock outcropping about 2/3 through which was perfect for lunch. I will do this loop again hopefully in Fall.

Went on my first backpacking trip here, Planned in doing the 16 mile overnight but accidentally took the short loop back, still was a great hike, beautiful huge pine trees and nice little inclines scattered throughout. I was expecting mud since it had rained recently and it certainly didn’t disappoint! Waterproof boots are a necessity on this trail. That said, all in all a great first backpacking experience I’d recommend.

This was my first time backpacking and was in fact the longest hike (did the long loop) I’ve ever taken in my life and I must say big mistake! It seems to me that I was a little too ambitious for my first time out and my leg gave up in the last two miles. Oh did I mention that I did this solo? Oopsie! I was able to limp my way out but lesson learned. I hope you like mud because there was a plenty of that and more. The trail was also pretty overgrown in mid July so expect plenty of brush and check for ticks often. I did encounter one but I caught it before I got bitten. Don’t get me started on the spider webs yuck! Even when swinging a trecking pole in front of me they’d still end up in my face.

I’d recommend getting some trail legs before attempting. I also managed to lose my Thermarest self inflating sleeping pad, I could have sworn I had it strapped down tightly but is still fell out without me noticing. Tried driving back to the campsite since it was about 1,000 feet from the road but nope, my cramping legs just weren’t having it. I didn’t find out till I got there but the board said not to drink the water due too activity (I assume agriculture byproducts?) in the area and you must pack in all water. Turned out 3 liters is not enough. To the people who left behind their extra water jugs, you are life savers! I’d say plan on 5-6 liters minimum.

Over all I had a good time and I learned some harsh lessons the hard way but if you’re up for the challenge I’d say go for it! Would I do it again? Yes but only after I get in better shape.

hiking
4 months ago

All the trails at EastFork are great, the only request I would have would to add more trail markers as some of the trails share common links and its easy to get off course.

I completed the perimeter a couple weeks ago my GPS read 11.1 miles. These are the best trails in the Cincinnati area. I frequent the perimeter trails here where there is a little less traffic. If you live in the area the yearly membership is well worth it. There are some decent hills, stone and wood steps, as well as prairies and creek crossings. Love these trails and take my dogs as well. They do have very strict leash requirements but I appreciate that as it can be quite annoying having random unleashed dogs run up to you or your dogs on leashes.

I loved it! But I took Fort Trail to Gorge Trail, about 4.5 miles. Today was muddy, and very slick so a few moments were a bit scary near the edge of some cliffs. Challenging, but part of what I enjoyed. Beautiful scenery! Had my dogs with me so we stopped off at the creek so they could have a little swim. Will do again for sure.

it's actually a little more than 8 miles. really weedy in the summer but a great trail. not too hard. a couple difficult crossings but nothing too bad. my family loves it. dont forget your water. takes us about 3 and a half hours but we just stroll along at a slow pace and enjoy it. check for ticks also when you're done.

Good trail. My mileage was closer to 10.9.

Great trail. Marked well.

I ran this in a little under 2 hours. Beautiful trail highly recommend. Easy to get lost in some areas so follow the signs. I saw a black snake on the trail and a deer ran out in front of me. Try to climb the big rock it’s a nice views. One side of the lake trail is very short while the other side is the majority of the distance.

trail running
5 months ago

Great trail and one heck of a challenge if it has recently rained, this can be one of muddiest trails I’ve ever trail run and just bring sandals I ran the whole loop in my bedrock cairns!

hiking
5 months ago

This trail was a disaster. I'm nonetheless giving it two stars because it would be a very nice trail if the ODNR expended any time or effort improving it or at least properly maintaining it, and also because I wasn't able to finish and can't fairly judge that part which I didn't hike (see below.)

I recently went for a day hike on this trail, on a hot summer day, after it hadn't rained for several days. I parked in the lot just north of the park office and set out eastbound on the section that runs concurrent with the 28-mile perimeter ("backpacking") trail, counterclockwise toward the lake.

The trail immediately seemed a bit muddy and not particularly well-traveled (except by horses apparently, because there was sh*t and indentations in the trail everywhere.) It was intermittently so overgrown that it was difficult to discern where the trail even was in spots, but I made do and thought little of it at the time--these things aren't exactly unheard of.

Approximately two miles in, the trail became a literal swamp. Not just mud, but six-inch deep standing water, twenty or thirty feet on each side of the trail, covering thick layers of muck. At my own peril, I declined to turn back, figuring this had to be a passing phase and I could work my way around it. Nope. The swamp lasted a good half mile. My waterproof boots were simply no match and my feet were absolutely drenched after a few misplaced steps on seemingly solid ground put them down in the muck. I concurrently scratched the living hell out of myself on brambles while walking off the trail to avoid the mud as best I could.

Soaked and literally bloody, I finally came to a four-way intersection with a more groomed, gravel trail approximately three miles in. The problem, of course, was that there were no markers aside from spray painted arrows on trees marking the various directions I could travel, and the utterly useless trail map I picked up at the office provided no additional context concerning my location.

I eventually managed to finagle my way to a road; I also found what I'm assuming was the back end of the trail, but my good sense finally got the better of me. I decided to forgo the remaining five-ish miles-- because not being able to walk for a week simply isn't worth the low-impact workout--and guessed my way back to my car.

Probably the best hike you're going to find in the Cincinnati area--certainly the best I've yet to experience. The trails are well maintained but this still makes for a moderately challenging ten-ish mile hike. Enough diversity in the scenery and terrain to keep it interesting on subsequent go-arounds. I take my dog here several times per summer.

The $9 price tag makes a yearly membership worth considering.

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