Archers Fork Trail

EASY 41 reviews
#1 of 3 trails in

Archers Fork Trail is a 13.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near New Matamoras, Ohio that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
13.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2178 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

cave

forest

views

wild flowers

Archers Fork is an absolutely beautiful 13 mile hike. This is a great overnight hiking/camping experience. It is very well marked with yellow diamond blazes. The Natural Bridge is a pretty awesome sight and the Cave is pretty amazing. The whole trail has huge rock outcroppings. Absolutely beautiful country!

hiking
22 days ago

I was doing Archers Fork Loop Trail as a over night backpacking trip to test out some new gear before me and my pops trip to do 98 miles on th AT. I started this trail counter clockwise started at 6 and got to to the natural bridge just in time to watch the sunrise. I passed up and down over and around breathtaking rock formations and small streams and rivers oil wells old and new throughout. I made it to Jackson run where there was a good little camp spot at about 1 set up camp ate some food and took a nap. when i woke up i decided to just finish it up so packed up in a bit of a haste at about 330. i don't know if it was because i was tired or what but that last section of the trail whooped my ass with the elevation ups and downs finished up about 630. It was a great trail but ran in to a little to many hikers more then my likening anyway but this little challenging trail has a ton of natural beauty and wildlife.

1 month ago

1 month ago

This was a great hike but I would not call it easy. We did it in one day and took us about 7 hours. Lots of hill, lots of hills. There is a part where you have to cross a deep creek that goes to about your thighs. The rocks, natural bridge and cave are beautiful. This trail has it all including the gas smell. Which was neat to see the old oil rigs but not on my nature hike in a national forest. It was marked well, I think we only got out the picture of the map a few times to make sure we were on track.

hiking
2 months ago

This trail was featured in Backpacker magazine and so I figured I would give it a try as a day hike. The trail receives high marks and reviews so maybe I had high expectations, but I was pretty disappointed with my experience. First, the trail is very poorly marked and if it had not been for a map and compass I surely would have been lost and possibly spent the night in the woods. I have a fair amount of experience hiking and navigating in the woods backpacking multi-day hikes on the Appalachian trail and other long distance hiking trails without this much difficulty. These issues can be fixed, however there are numerous exposed gas pipelines and oil pumps along the corridor of the trail. Additionally, we experienced a strong natural gas odor in three separate areas of the trail that was quite overwhelming. I reported this to the Forest service who said that they are aware and working to fix the issue. Very disappointed in my experience. There are several nice rock formations and streams in the area, but this area needs a great deal of work.

hiking
3 months ago

backpacking
4 months ago

We've been here several times and it's always amazing. Moderately challenging, not too crowded, plenty of water. Not a lot of big hilltop views, but the woods themselves are beautiful and green. I always get some nice photos.

backpacking
4 months ago

Some overgrown parts of the trail. Some ticks. But beautiful!

hiking
4 months ago

backpacking
6 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

backpacking
6 months ago

Had a great trip. Water near campsite. Campsite was great and at a good halfway point.

I will say sections of the trail could have better blazes. Got confused a couple times if we were actually on Archers Fork or North Country as only one was labeled and seemed to use same color blaze. There were a ton of blue blazes but yellow for Archers Fork were not as easily seen at times.

Highly recommend this trip. Did it in two days just to get an overnight tent trip in but could definitely do in a day. Also recommend checking out the Natural Bridge. Sweet caves too.

backpacking
7 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

The best trail i have hiked at Wayne. Easy to navigate with the yellow diamonds. Lots of cool rock formations. Must do for any ohio backpacker or hiker.

8 months ago

This park is great- good variety, scenic, and great campground

hiking
9 months ago

Mapquest took us right to the cemetery for parking with no issues. We started counter clockwise and the first half of the trail was very easy with the trail in good shape despite the monsoon of a winter we have had in Ohio. Smelled gas a couple of times but wasn't an issue. We did lose some time trying to find a stream crossing that wasn't too deep because of all the rain. The second half of the trail was a little muddier and had some steep climbs but not too demanding. It took us 6 hours and my step counter was right at 30000 so I think the trail is closer to the 14 mile mark. The established campsites seemed to be close to roads. Overall a good winter/spring warm-up hike. With all the leaves off the trees there were some nice views but I don't think you would see much besides interior forest once the leaves come on.

camping
11 months ago

we did a family overnight on the trail. hiked a little over halfway and found a nice ridge with an established camp. heard owls at night. had my 8 yr old with us and it was probably more challenging than he deserved. Lots of elevation changes. summer in full swing and water along the trail was scarce.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Meh. Fairly easy trail, with some nice rock formations early on. But, it definitely isn't secluded. You'll hike past old oil drilling stations the whole way and be surrounded by the smell of gas most the way. Cross a couple mildly trafficked dirt roads and be greeted by some very hateful locals.

backpacking
Monday, October 24, 2016

The Archer's Fork loop was my first overnight stay. I completed the trek 2016-06.

Trail-Head
Look for the trail-head sign. There is a dirt road that heads south which declines from the parking area and is on the west side of the small parking lot. This muddy access road is not the trail head. The trail is on the north side of the graveyard. If you are looking at the main gate at the center of the graveyard, turn left ninety degrees and in about twenty-ish paces you will see the trail head sign. To the right of the sign there will be a metal gate and this path then follows the north side of the graveyard. This is the start of the trail. I will try to upload a photo. I noticed many beautiful flowers here when I visited.

Difficulty
I planned on splitting the loop into two days because I wanted to stop at the cave, the natural bridge and to have some free time for whatever came up since I am a newbie. This turned out to be a very good decision. The elevation changes and switchbacks are many. It certainly can be done in one day but this trail kicked my butt (in a good way).

Navigation
The trail was marked very well when I went and I had no real trouble navigating. I did have a few maps.

Trail Notes
Water was not an issue when I went. Sometimes the trail was encroached by growth but that was fun. I was glad I wore pants and long sleeves though. I think the trail was busy when I went as I saw about eight separate people/groups. There were a few nice camp spots but they were taken when I arrived (I started late). I was just camping under a tarp so I just setup near a stream as the sun set. I chose to go anti-clock-wise around the loop. There were many rock outcroppings that I wish I had time to explore.

I came from Cleveland and it did take longer than I expected to get from 77 to the trail-head. I wish I lived closer but I do hope can do this trail at least once a year.

hiking
Sunday, October 02, 2016

Trail is pretty hard to find, but once you get to the trailhead it's very well-marked. We did the northernmost portion and didn't do the entire loop, but we were able to see two caves which were really cool. Lots of steep leg-burning climbs - this is a great place for a workout. Best part about this trail is it's off the beaten path and fairly remote - we didn't see another human for hours, and it was quiet and beautiful.

backpacking
Monday, July 18, 2016

My boyfriend and I completed this trail over the weekend. We did an overnighter, splitting the trail in half. We started at St. Patrick's Cemetary, which was very easy to find. The trail itself was very well marked, we had no problem finding our way the entire time. We did not have a map, we simply followed the review left below that was pretty step-by-step. The step-by-step review is accurate but we disagree with the mileage. The trail is more around 12 miles. We stayed at the halfway camping site, as suggested, but it was around mile 6 versus mile 4.6. It was a very nice spot, flat space for a tent, trees for a hammock, rock fire ring, plenty of awesome seating made out of logs and rocks, even had a grilling rack and brush cleaner hanging from the tree. The downside of the spot was no water. There is a stream but it was dry. There was also limited places to hang a bear bag. The branches were short and pointing upwards. A lot of the streams we came across were dry, so be sure to pack in plenty of water and when you do come across water, be sure to take advantage and fill up. The trail is pretty aggressive as far as terrain. I feel as though 90% of this trail was uphill, the rest was steep downhill. It was a lot harder than expected. Overall, this is a great loop trail for an overnighter. We probably won't be back until we're in better shape, but we the end result was accomplishing.