East Fork Long Loop is a 8 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Bethel, Ohio that features a lake. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking and trail running. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
8.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
475 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

trail running

forest

lake

hiking
6 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.

hiking
11 months ago

This is not a very challenging and somewhat boring trail. The loop is Back pack trail out (blue markings) and return via the green markings. The map printed off the website not very helpful.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

hiking
Saturday, November 11, 2017

Monday, November 06, 2017

hiking
Thursday, December 20, 2012