Trails at Lorain County Metro Parks


The Lorain County Metro Parks are full of trails for our guests to explore, listed below are our major marked trails. There are descriptions of the trails, the length of the trails, and some of the highlights you will see along your way.

Friends of the Metro Parks Hiking Stick Program

The hiking stick program started in 1986 with 7 parks and 4,200 acres. This program was adapted to get people into the parks and enjoying nature. As an incentive hiking sticks were given out after completing 10 hikes in 6 different parks (a list of hikes can be found in the Arrowhead newsletter). Please not that a park naturalist has to sign off on the hiking stick form. For returning participants, a metal tag is given to attach to your hiking stick.

Now with 28 parks and over 10,000 acres, the program continues today. It has become a great outing for the scout troops, senior citizens and families. What a fantastic way to visit your parks, learn about nature first hand and engaging in a healthy life style. Hiking stick forms are available below, or at any park. Hikes run April 1st through June 30th.


There are several asphalt trails in the parks for rollerbladers. Listed below are parks with trails available.

(Sorry no skateboards are allowed)


Bikes are a great way to explore the parks and get some exercise. North Coast Inland Trail is our longest bike trail at 13 miles and extends from Elyria to Oberlin to Kipton. Another park that is a favorite of bikers is the Black River Reservation with many miles of trails connecting Elyria to Lorain. Below is a list parks with asphalt and/ or crushed stone trails that are conducive for biking. Bikes are not allowed at Caley Reservation, Schoepfle Garden, and in the wetlands area of Sandy Ridge Reservation.

Mountain Biking

"Off-road" trails for non-motorized mountain bikes

Indian Hollow Reservation has designated trails on the north side of the Black River where off-road mountain biking is permitted. In partnership with Cleveland FreeRide, hills and tricks have been added to the trails.

Equestrian Trails

There are several trails within the metro parks geared towards horseback riding. Bring your own horse and enjoy the park. Horses are not allowed on asphalt trails.

  • Carlisle Reservation - with trailer parking at either the Equestrian Center or the Carlisle Visitor Center (stone lot only). Natural trails and crushed limestone trails are available.
  • Charlemont Reservation - No picnicking facilities available. Natural Trails are only available.
  • Kipton Reservation - No picnicking facilities available. Natural Trails are only available.
  • Wellington Reservation - Parking for trailers is available in the gravel parking lot. Natural Trails are only available.

Dog Walking

Dogs are welcomed in most of our parks. They must be on a 6 foot or less leash. Dogs are not allowed at Schoepfle Garden, Caley Reservation, the beach at Lakeview Park, Sandy Ridge Reservation (allowed in limited areas only) and Columbia Reservation on specific trails during nesting seasons.


Trails By Reservation

Amherst Beaver Creek Reservation
913 North Lake Street, Amherst, Ohio 44001
Length Surface Description View Photo
1.5 Miles Asphalt

The one and a half-mile Beaver Creek Trail shows a surprising amount of diversity. The asphalt trail loops past a small cattail marsh, into the Beaver Creek Valley, and through a pine forest. The trail can be accessed from the main parking lot or from the neighborhood trailhead on North Main Street.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Black River Reservation
1350 Ford Road, Elyria, Ohio 44035
Length Surface Description View Photo
6.5 Miles Asphalt

The focus of the Black River Reservation is a 6.5 mile hike/bike trail which runs along the Black River. The fully accessible asphalt trail is suitable for hikers, bicyclists and other modes of non-motorized transportation and connects High Meadows on Ford Road in Elyria to Route 611. The Bridgeway Trail is highlighted by a 1,000 foot bridge that crosses the Black River twice. The Steel Mill Trail is connected to the Bridgeway Trail and is highlighted by slag fields from the Steel Mill surrounding it. Tram tours are available for both trails.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Carlisle Reservation
12882 Diagonal Road, LaGrange, Ohio 44050
Length Surface Description View Photo

Crushed Stone, Unimproved Trail,

The 1500 acres of the Carlisle Reservation provide for an adventurous amount of hiking. The flood plain, upland meadows, mature forests, and a 65 acre wetland area provide for scenery changes during hikes. There is gravel, dirt, and grass trails to pick from.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Columbia Reservation
25145 Royalton Road, Columbia Station, Ohio 44028
Length Surface Description View Photo

1 Mile

2.5 Miles


Crushed Limestone

This 425 acre primarily wetland reservation offers both paved asphalt and crushed limestone trails that run through both wooded and open areas. All trails are open to biking. Dogs are allowed year round on the asphalt trail and limited in other areas as posted, some seasonally.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

French Creek Reservation
4530 Colorado Avenue, Sheffield Village, Ohio 44054
Length Surface Description View Photo

2 Miles

1.5 Miles

Crushed Stone

Unimproved Trail

The French Creek Reservation features over three and a half miles of trails to guide you through the rich woodlands and along picturesque streams and cliffs. The Big Woods Stone trail is accessible from the French Creek Nature Center or from the Pine Tree Picnic Area.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Indian Hollow Reservation
38744 Parsons Road, Grafton, Ohio 44044
Length Surface Description View Photo
1.25 Miles Crushed Stone

This newer trail connects the well-established Sheldon Woods Picnic Area with the larger, and wilder, section of this portion of the Indian Hollow Reservation.  It also features a connector trail at both ends.  The eastern connector joins a section facilitated by the Village of Grafton. A spectacular, humpback bridge crosses the East Branch of the Black River.  A portion of the trail follows a railroad bed that once held the tracks that served the sandstone quarry that once thrived here. Scenic views of the Black River, sandstone outcrops and quarrying debris, and wildlife are plentiful. Mountain bicycles are permitted on designated sections of non-improved trails.

The Royal Oaks portion of Indian Hollow is a former golf course turned hiking and fitness trail. The Fitness Trail section is a 0.3 mile loop featuring 15 different workout stations. The crushed limestone trail is a total of 2 ½ miles and is a great place to run or walk your dog as it travels through beautifully scenic fields and features 3 catch-and-release fishing ponds. At the beginning of the trail, near the former clubhouse, there is a water fountain which even features a doggy drinking fountain.

View Sheldon Woods section Trail Map (PDF File)
View Royal Oaks section Trail Map (PDF File)

Kopf Family Reservation
32649 Electric Boulevard, Avon Lake, Ohio 44012
Length Surface Description View Photo

2 miles

1 mile


Crushed Stone

Follow the Kopf Family Reservation trail through woodlands that boast many flora and fauna. You can access the trail at several different entrances including the Avon Lake Public Library parking lot, Woodstock St, Sunset Park and at Belle Road Park.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Kopf Family Reservation Trail
North Coast Inland Trail
Downtown Kipton to Downtown Elyria
Elyria Trailhead: 6275 Gateway Boulevard, Elyria, Ohio 44035
Length Surface Description View Photo
65 miles total, 13.1 in Lorain County Asphalt

The North Coast inland Trail encompasses 65 miles, from Elyria to Toledo. The city of Oberlin owns the 3.1 miles within its city borders and The Lorain County Metro Parks own and manages the remaining ten miles. This 12 foot wide asphalt path is available to all non-motorized vehicles and can be picked up at several intersections.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Sandy Ridge Reservation
6195 Otten Road, North Ridgeville, Ohio 44039
Length Surface Description View Photo
2 Miles Crushed Stone

The two mile long trip on the Sandy Ridge Trail will take you through the pristine wetland areas of the Sandy Ridge Reservation. This graveled looping trail tops the dikes that surround this preserve. An observation mound allows you to view the marsh from above and benches on the top allow you a scenic place to rest.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Schoepfle Garden
11106 Market Street, Birmingham, Ohio 44816
Length Surface Description View Photo
2 Miles Unimproved Trail & Grass Trail

The Schoepfle Garden Nature Trail starts near the back pond at the rear of Schoepfle Garden. The trail goes through the woods to the Birmingham Community Center. The trail is rich in nature and gives an idea of the type of plants and animals native to the Vermilion River Valley. The park also features a formal garden loop through the beautiful gardens and a river valley trail.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Vermilion River Reservation
51211 North Ridge Road, Vermilion, Ohio 44089
Length Surface Description View Photo
Various Crushed Stone and Dirt Trails

The river valley at the Vermilion River Reservation provides for diverse communities of animal and plant life. The reservation has a walking center to assist you in finding the best trail for you. Once you find a trail you can begin your tour of one of the most historic sites in Lorain County.

View Trail Map (PDF File)

Wellington Reservation
535 Jones Road, Wellington, Ohio 44090
Length Surface Description View Photo

1.4 Miles

2.25 Miles


Crushed Stone

Over four miles of trails meander through the Wellington Reservation grassland fields, wetland habitats and around the South Reservoir. The loop trail system highlights a different section of the park, providing visitors with a variety of vistas across the lake from atop an elevated observation mound, and throughout the intermittent wetlands in the grassland prairies.

View Trail Map (PDF File)


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