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Explore the best rated trails in Portsmouth, OH. Whether you're looking for an easy walking trail or a bike trail like the Paint Creek Recreation Trail and Wellston Bike Path. With more than 3 trails covering 47 miles you're bound to find a perfect trail for you. Click on any trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
This trail has lots of potential with scenic views but is in dire need of maintenance and signage. I planned to do the full 70 mile round trip but stopped at just over 23 to avoid damage to my road bike.
My wife and I just completed this trail. We rode from the Shaw Wetlands trailhead near Washington Court House to Chillicothe, stayed overnight at Atwood Bed and Breakfast, and returned to our truck the next day. For the most part this is a lovely trail. A nice mix of shaded area and stretches of open sun. Beware of the root bumps caused by tree roots pushing up ridges across the pavement. And take a map! The eastern end of this trail has a few critical turns that are not marked. We followed what we thought was the trail and ended up on US 50, and that’s no place for a bicycle. After consulting Traillink’s map we realized where we missed a turn. The trail made a few more turns that were not obvious. I’d say the signage is woefully inadequate but that would be giving it too much credit. There was nearly no signage at all. Take a map!
We agree with previous reviews. The trail is rough - lots of roots, grass growing in cracks - and not marked so can take you out. There is need for maintenance, not only on trail but along edges too. Very overgrown and impinging on trail. There are no restrooms, food or water except in Washington court house and Chillicothe so be prepared. All this being said, you pretty much have trail to yourself. On beautiful june Saturday we passed 6 bikes and 4 walkers during our 20 mile ride.
I rode from the trailhead at Farm Rd to the end and back. Great shade, friendly people, not busy/crowded at all. Bird nerd paradise! So many species and songs! Trail was perfumed with the sweet smell of honeysuckle throughout. Very easy ride but recommend walking up the steep slope at the park because you have to come to a dead stop at the apex or you're in the street.
I rode 5.66 miles on an out-and-back ride on the 1.78 mile long Wellston Bike Path in Wellston, Ohio. The additional milage came from riding the all-purpose trail in Lake Alma State Park just outside of town. This paved rail trail runs from Wellston Depot (train station) up to the state park. That seems to be the trail's only purpose. It's definitely useful to the local citizenry and keeps cyclists and pedestrians off of OH-349. The trail surface is in good shape except for a small section between the rail bridge over Raccoon Creek and the entrance to Lake Alma State Park where some erosional slippage has occurred. The state park's all purpose trail expands the bike path's reach and utility by giving access to the Lake Alma's campground, beach, hiking trails and picnic facilities. It is a pretty little trail but I’m not sure that you can expect any expansion of the trail anytime in the foreseeable future as it appears that other abandoned rail lines around the town have been converted into local roadways. If you are in the Wellston area it is trail well worth checking out. However, due to its short length I don’t think that there is enough reward to take an extended drive just to check this trail off of your list.
The Gallia County Hike & Bike Trail currently consists of two unconnected segments -- The paved “Riverfront” segment which is located within Gallipolis, and the crushed stone/grassy “Northwest” segment that runs between the towns of Bidwell and Kerr. Google Maps and signs along the trail use the O.O. McIntyre Park (District) moniker with individual trail sections given trail names. I parked and started from Haskins Park located somewhat in the middle of the east-west running "Riverfront" section in Gallipolis. If you head east, out of Haskins Park, the trail travels 2.3 miles past both the Cliffside Golf Course and the Gallia-Meigs Regional Airport. This segment ends at Lee Road. The trail could probably be extended up to Addison from here, but I’m not sure anyone is currently clamoring for that, as I was the only person on this section of trail both out and back. West of Haskins Park, once you cross OH-160 (Pine Street) the trail parallels that road. This 4 mile section crosses OH-160 up by the Holzer Emergency Medical Center and ends under a US-35 overpass after crossing over OH-160 again. These paved sections of the trail are in very good shape except for the short half mile section near the Holzer Emergency Medical Center where there is quite a bit of tree root uplifting of the asphalt. Once you arrive at the US-35 underpass near the Holzer Medical Center there is a gap of about 2 miles in the trail between this ending and the town of Kerr.
The "Northwest" segment of the trail runs from Kerr to the town of Bidwell, Ohio. This segment of the Gallia County Hike & Bike Trail is not as developed as the one in Gallipolis. The trail here is crushed stone and grass covered. This 4 mile section of the trail seems to have been greatly ignored. There was little evidence that trail is used very often. I rode south from Bidwell towards Kerr. For most of the ride out of Bidwell the only way that I knew I was on a trail was that there was an unobstructed pathway of grass surrounded by trees and brush on both sides. I crossed over a wooden bridge spanning a creek which had had some of its planking replaced but other than that there was little sign of this trail being used at all. After traveling about 6/10ths of a mile, I crossed OH-850 and came to a dead stop. What should have been a continuation of the pathway had disappeared and nothing but trees and brush stood in my way. From satellite and street view images on Google Maps this should have continued to be an open dual track pathway so I’m not sure how out-of-date the Google Maps images are. There was a nearby driveway which I chose to ride up to see if I could see if the trail was still viable beyond the OH-850 crossing. From the driveway, I walked down to the old rail bed and took a look around. It was clearly overgrown. I walked for about 2/10ths of a mile and while I could have easily ridden in the direction I had been going, the pathway was not as clear as before, so I decided to turn around. Perhaps, if I had started in Kerr and headed north the trail would have been more easily identifiable. However, there didn’t appear to be any defined parking for the trail in Kerr. In my opinion, until Gallia County decides to make improvements to this portion of trail, I wouldn't bother to attempt to ride this trail segment.
If you do find yourself in the Gallipolis area the paved portion of the trail is worth seeking out. If the Railroad Freight Station Museum is completed that could be an interesting venue along the trail. Bathrooms and water are available in Haskins Park.
Nice shaded trail runs along water. Nice overlook spot. Plenty of benches. Track is a little bumpy and we need more bathroom stop facilities.
Nice trail however some parts are becoming overgrown with weeds and sumac. Trash bags strewn about near what looks like the city sewer plant. There’s also some areas with roots growing through the asphalt. Overall a great ride though
My wife and I road the entire trail from the Exxon to Lee St. 13 miles total (6.5 one way). Took us about an hour and 20 min but we took it easy. Trail is very well kept, a few joggers and walkers along the way, everyone was very friendly. Hit up the shake shoppe when you are finished, great shakes and malts!
This refers to a ride on August 15 from Chillicothe going northwest. The bridge repairs have been completed and the padlock on the bridge has been removed. The trail is now open from one end to the other with a slight detour into the grass where the washout occurred just south of Frankfort.
This refers to a trip on August 8, 2020 that started from Gardner Athletic Field in Washington Court House and proceeded south-east along the Paint Creek Recreation Trail as far as was possible. About 24 miles south of Washington Court House, the southbound trail was partially blocked by a temporary fence. I walked around this fence and then rode over one bridge and then a second bridge. On the southeastern side of this second bridge the trail was blocked by a 4-foot high, padlocked fence. The lock was apparently installed to prevent northbound users from accessing the bridge I just crossed. Main point: the trail is closed for maintenance about 24 miles southeast of Washington Court House between Musselman and Anderson.
If you were starting in Chilicothe, you should be able to ride about 10 miles before you'd be forced to turn around.
Other than that, it was a beautiful day for bike ride. Much of the trail is shaded. While there are a few bumps on the paved trail due to root incursions, they are scattered over the length of the trail. The worst ones have been spray painted white to draw your attention. Although not crowded there were a few other riders, joggers and walkers enjoying the trail.
Comments cover 26 July 2020 round trip from Robinson Rd. to trail end in Chillicothe, which constituted roughly half of a 120-mile ride.
- Might need to get an orthodontist appointment and get my wheels re-trued after yesterday's thud-fest over root incursions, pavement holes, and tree debris--especially treacherous when the debris was hiding those incursions and holes. Trail might be OK for trail bikes or road bikes with wider tires, but if you're using 23-25 mm tires, plan on going slower than you probably normally would. I can't believe I didn't break a spoke. I've ridden thousands of miles on the trails extending from Xenia to Urbana, Piqua, Columbus, Cincinnati, and the county line east of Jamestown, and I can unequivocally say that this trail is the worst I've ever been on. I won't be back unless I'm walking.
- So glad I drove down the evening prior and stashed water bottles in a couple of places. If I hadn't, I'd probably still be out there lying in a ditch praying for rain or for a coyote to put me out of my misery.
- I did enjoy the relative isolation--less chance of others hearing me swear every few minutes about my bike and molars getting beat up.
- Lots of nice shade, but you pay for all those trees. Did I mention root incursions and debris? Conversely, some folks may consider the open sections through farmland to be extensive, so they should be sure to use sunscreen (even when it's cloudy!) and plan for hydration.
- When there's a known closed section of the trail, seems like signage at the nearest road crossings and/or trail spurs would be a good idea. Why put the first indication of a closure at the closure itself, miles from the nearest road, forcing users to backtrack? Can you imagine if the highway department did that with motorists? Why not alert folks before the closure and give them a chance to detour at the last available detour route?
- I'll also echo what several others have said about route signage and markings: Pay attention or have the route memorized. Maybe I'm a doofus, but the brief on-road portion heading west-to-east at the Marathon station on Clinton Rd. in Chillicothe snookered me. I missed the trail continuation on the other side of the road (possibly because cars waiting at the light were blocking my line of sight) and needlessly rode up the hill before realizing something was wrong. I did appreciate the occasional sign showing mileage to various cities.
- Finally, maybe I was hallucinating on my way back, or maybe my eyeballs had come loose from their sockets, but I swear some of the painted mile markers on the trail were repeated. For example, when I passed mile 15, I expected the next one to be 15.5, but I think the next one was 15 again.
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