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Cuyahoga Valley National Park

With gorgeous landscapes covering 33,000 acres of forests, hills, and meadows, Cuyahoga National Park is beautifully located in a valley near the winding Cuyahoga River. The park was originally used by Native Americans as hunting grounds and for the trade of fur, later in the 1870s becoming a place for recreation. Even now, the park offers endless activity possibilities including kayaking, hiking, golfing, wildlife watching, and train rides.

A 60-foot waterfall, a twisty river, tall cliffs with wonderful rock formations covered in moss, and a touristic train excursion are just a few of the attractions Cuyahoga National Park in Ohio has to offer. The park also provides countless trails for visitors to follow all leading to breathtaking scenic views of nature and wildlife.

Brandywine Falls

With over 125 miles of trails ranging in length, the park offers various hiking options with Brandywine Falls being one of the most popular ones. Concealed within the park and naturally formed by the Brandywine River, the incredible Brandywine Waterfall is 60 feet high. Being a very popular attraction, this trail can get extremely busy in summer (parking is usually full by 10 am). Alternately, parking is available by Standford House, and following a 3.8-mile scenic trail through the woods also leads to the falls. From the parking lot, picnic area, and restrooms, a 1.5-mile hike leads visitors through the gorge and down to the river.

The trail heads through the forest over shaded boardwalks with the calming sound of water echoing in the valley. The boardwalk leads to staircases cutting the altitude quite drastically, from here visitors have unobstructed views of the waterfall in its full glory. In 1814, a sawmill was built to harness the power of the waterfall, and later a village was also built around this strategic location. The humidity at the gorge creates the perfect environment for nature and wildlife to flourish, resulting in the surrounding sandstone boulders being all covered in moss and hemlocks. From the falls, a couple of challenging hops over the slippery rocks in the river leads to the Brandywine Gorge 2.7 mile trail, leading deeper into the forest where nature is at its finest. The fall is worth visiting all year round! Whether visiting in spring, when water flow is at its peak, or in fall when nature is super colorful, or in winter when the water freezes, Brandywine is equally magnificent.

The Ledges Trail

The Ledges Trail is another wonderful hiking location. The splendid 1.8-mile trail is moderately challenging and connects to different trails so extending the hike to a longer one is easily possible. Parking and a sheltered picnic area are available, although prior reservation for the later is recommended. The looped trail boasts amazing scenery and wild flora. With various intersections along the trail, it can be quite challenging to stick to the correct one, so keeping a map handy is definitely a good idea.

The rocky staircase leading to the bottom can be slippery, but the Ledges Trail is much more private than Brandywine Falls. The trail leads along the stunning imposing sandstone cliffs that form the Ritchie Ledges. The Ledges were found in the Virginia Kendall Park area of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, which gets its name from the mother of the farmer who originally owned the land. From the parking lot, a short walk and a descend leads to the base of the cliffs with the ledges right above you. Visitors can also walk to Ice Box Cave, a cold sandstone recessed cave, home to hundreds of bats. Entrance into the cave is prohibited to help protect bats from a lethal fungal disease.

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad

Possibly the most touristic attraction of the park is the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, a privately owned non-profit railway. This attraction enables visitors to explore the beauty of the park and the nature surrounding it from the comfort of the train. Leaving from Rockside Station, Peninsula Depot or Akron Northside station, this 2.5 hour round trip is an alternate way to go through the Cuyahoga Valley, view the river, and if lucky spot some wildlife including rare birds, deer, and otter. With tickets starting at $15 and increasing based on the area of seating, this train allows visitors with mobility issues to also explore the park.

Cuyahoga National Park in Ohio is a fantastic location away from the marks of progress and modernization. The free to visit park has a natural charm, and while attractions like Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad and Brandywine Waterfalls are more popular and attract larger audiences, the parks raw beauty lies in its deeper, slightly harder to reach locations like Ledges Trail. Including a golf course, kayaking, cycling, and plenty of nature-watching opportunities, it truly is a spectacular location everyone can enjoy.

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Looking for Web Design & Development in Cuyahoga Valley, Ohio?

Check out our transparent pricing structure and amazing client reviews.

“We are getting unparalleled service, and truly professional and beautiful work.”
- Robin’s Confections

Let’s get started on your next project.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park Photos

Where Is It?

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Ohio, United States

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