Explore the most popular views trails in Shades State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

on Trail #10

10 days ago

Mostly gravel & rock ,very flat, a ok stroll through the woods ,, nothing to see until preserve. Which is worth seeing.. I would say ten is wheelchair accessible until preserve, for those who may want an outdoor adventure ..

Excellent trail for a quick overnighter, or for beginners .. The campsites were excellent , having the means of firewood, water and facilities right at camp is nice .Short walk to sugar creek ,.. My real only complaint is that the trail is so peppered with signage,..Prob, close to 50 signs on a 2.5 mile stretch.. Two dozen were completely not needed and takes away the feeling of "being out there" .. But , all in all , very nice. Would recommend .

hiking
27 days ago

The views are beautiful. markings are a little confusing.

2 months ago

took the kids today. we had fun!

2 months ago

it started as a moderate trail overlooking the sugar Creek but then you come to the huge staircase down into the ravine close to where the stream empties into sugar creek. The rest of the trail is a rugged journey back into the ravines as it gradually ascends back to the top. the whole time going against the stream's currant. we should have done this trail first instead of last. It kicked our butts. great trail!

2 months ago

Suggest taking the creek side first (clockwise) so you’re descending stairs and going down creek. Great trail with lots of creek walking.

hiking
5 months ago

Completed this trail in 2012. nice little trail, ladders made it fun.

7 months ago

Fun, short, and ladders...

hiking
7 months ago

Very fun hike, walking up the ravine. Our ten-year-old loved it.

on Trail #5

hiking
9 months ago

Definitely had a Jurassic Park feel to it, love the terrain and plant diversity. Definitely recommend!

on Trail #10

hiking
9 months ago

Great to have a trail connect the park and the nature preserve!

hiking
10 months ago

Listed here as EASY. Park guide lists it as RUGGED/VERY RUGGED (1.25miles). As others have recommended, take the trail clockwise, which is to say, go left at the loop start. Steep descent down a couple hundred stair steps. Beautiful trek up Pearl ravine with nice rock/tree overhangs up to Maidenhair Falls (a small 6-8ft fall). A little further out of the ravine and then several series of more easily navigated stairs back to the trailhead. IMO, this is one of the more rugged trails in this part of the state.

i love this quite little trail and camp ground

hiking
10 months ago

There is a rugged section to trail that is at least considered moderate.

hiking
11 months ago

Trail never disappoints! Less crowded than turkey run and just as pretty. Clockwise on loop and you'll do stairs down and walk up ravine/stream. Either way is great.

hiking
Sunday, March 05, 2017

I completed Trail #1 and #2 yesterday, and they were both great, pretty similar actually. Both are ravine trails, where the trail is essentially the stream bed. Hiking in a ravine stream bed is a really fun and unique hiking adventure. Walked away with an appreciation for the name of "Shades" -- the mid-day light is very different and beautiful down there.

Trail #1 features more shale rock in the trail, which is fun to walk on. Be sure to wear wear waterproof boots, and it's not a bad idea to keep a back-up pair of socks in your car for afterwards. It is still early in the season yet, but we didn't see any other hikers on the trail.

Protip: When you start out on the trail, and get to the loop, turn left, go down the stairs, and the first main attraction is the Silver Cascade falls, and then you'll hike up the ravine. IMO much better to go down those very steep steps than back up them.

hiking
Sunday, February 19, 2017

Awesome views! We started the loop going right and enjoyed every minute of this trail. The most difficult part for us was actually the steep staircase at the end of all things. Might actually have been slightly easier taking the loop clockwise at the beginning if you're worried about difficulty.

hiking
Sunday, February 19, 2017

Great views, walked trails 1 & 2 yesterday and enjoyed each. Be sure to wear shoes or boots with good grip and expect to get your socks a little wet if they aren't waterproof! Overall enjoyed my Shades experience.

Friday, January 27, 2017

One of my favorite trails in my favorite state park!

Monday, November 07, 2016

Great view at Prospect Point. Fun easy hike.

Monday, November 07, 2016

Nice walk to Pine Hills preserve. Would rather walk this than drive after hiking the tougher trails in the park.

hiking
Saturday, September 03, 2016

The Pearl Ravine can be found on trail 2 at Shades. When you get to the loop portion, go left. (unless you want to hike down the ravine and up several stairs.) Wear a good pair of hiking shoes and be prepared for mud. At the falls you will be rewarded with an amazing view of sandstone cliffs. Trail is somewhat strenuous for the novice hiker.

hiking
Saturday, September 03, 2016

Beautiful views above Sugar Creek, trail heads down by stairs to Cascade Falls, and loops around using the ravine creek bed as trail to the Devils punchbowl. Gorgeous views of sandstone cliffs! After a few days of heavy rain there are usually two lovely waterfalls into the punchbowl. The trail then heads back up stairs and loops back around through more stairs. :) We have been taking our now 3-year-old on this trail since he could toddle around (just be careful on stairs!). We sometimes hook up on trail 6 off of trail 1 for more creek bed playing. :)

hiking
Sunday, June 12, 2016

Not a very interesting trail and buggy when we hiked it. Nature trail is great but this one isn't

Friday, May 27, 2016

Loved it!

hiking
Saturday, April 16, 2016

Starting at the parking area it is a easy trail to get to inspiration and Prospect points overlooking Sugar Creek. Then descend approximately 60 steep stairs down to silver cascade waterfall. It is then a rugged hike along the ravine creek bed through sandstone cliffs, over rocks and fallen trees to get to the base of Devils Punchbowl. It is then many staircases and foot bridges to get back to the trail. It is not crowded and is passable with bigger dogs. Well worth the trip. Combine with trails 4/5/7 for more time and challenge.

hiking
Saturday, July 04, 2015

Had a blast in the pearl ravine and devil's bowl yesterday. Trail1 & 2. Bring a good pair of hiking shoes and don't be afraid to get a little muddy. It will be a great adventure.

hiking
Friday, July 03, 2015

Great! Walked through the ravine the whole way, very fun

hiking
Sunday, June 07, 2015

Did this trail enroute to Pine Hills nature preserve. Just a simple walk, but hiking it was preferred to driving to the preserve.

hiking
Sunday, June 07, 2015

Great valley views, Devil's punch bowl beautiful gulley. Shades is a great park.

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