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Find the top rated hiking trails in Ashland, whether you're looking for an easy short hiking trail or a long hiking trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a hiking trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
|Trail Image||Trail Name||States||Length||Surface||Rating|
The Dawkins Line Rail Trail is the longest rail-trail in Kentucky, spanning 36 miles from Hagerhill to Evanston in the eastern part of the state. The rail-trail accommodates horseback riders,...
|KY||36 mi||Asphalt, Crushed Stone||
The Gallia County Hike & Bike Trail follows an old railroad right-of-way between Bidwell and Gallipolis, at the Ohio River. Though are plans to develop a total of 28 miles (to include Vinton County...
|OH||11.34 mi||Crushed Stone||
The Wellston Bike Path is just under 2 miles, but when combined with the path around Lake Alma, you can make it a 5-mile round-trip. North of town, the path parallels State Route 349, making for a...
My wife and I planned to cycle approximately 30mi on the Dawkins Line. We started at the Jane Beshears Trailhead and headed toward the Tip Top Tunnel. The trail surface was poor with a mixture of crush run and loose gravel. In the first two miles we were chased by ten different dogs. Between the surface and the dogs we decided to return to the vehicle and were chased by the same ten dogs again. The trail manager needs to address these issues before I'd recommend this trail to anyone.
We left the Jane Beshear tailhead. Tried to use the restroom facilities before we left, however the doors were locked. Hope they can remedy that. Going north, the trail was crushed rock for about 2 miles. The path was smooth and easy to ride for the first 0.5 miles. From that point forward, there was a lot of evidence of ATV use on the trail. The tread marks left grooves which made the ride more bumpy. We also ran into a patch where the gravel was very loose and it actually made it hard to drive through. About 2 miles in, we hit asphalt and the rest of the ride was very smooth. We also a couple of close calls with dogs chasing us and we drove up the trail. It got scary once as a pit bull approached. All in all, it was a very pleasant experience and I would go again.
We started at the Jenny's Creek Trailhead and went for about 8 miles. The highlights are the fantastic trailheads (Jenny's Creek had a toilet and plenty of parking) and Griffith Family Farm market at Swamp Branch Trailhead (don't miss the opportunity to stop here for the baked treats and sandwiches). The detractor is the loose gravel in sections of the trail that tired us out very quickly. The owner of Griffith Family Farm market told us the section of trail up to Swamp Branch is scheduled for paving and the rest of the trail will remain crushed stone for horse riding.
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.
We went in at Jenny Creek and rode to a little pass Gun Creek tunnel. The path had some fresh limestone down that was hard to ride through at spots. We all have hybrid bikes and were able to handle the path well for the most part. You do go gradually uphill for a few miles and then down hill is nice, its pretty much a straight line. Half sun/half shade. About 6 miles in a dog joined us that we could not shake. She stayed on the side, and didn't get in our way riding, I'm sure we were not her first escort. She was the best part of the trail, her tag said owners name but not hers and turns out her name was Marly, she's brown hound dog mix. All six of us said she was the best part of the trip, she hung with us like a champ. She even posed with our group picture in front of the tunnel which I sent to the owner so they knew where she was. We found out she is known to join bikers and you won't be able to shake her. On the way back we stopped at the Griffith Farmer's Market (well worth the stop) that is where we learned of her name and they held her for us and called the owner. If you are ever by this path, it is worth it, hopefully you'll see Marly. We ended up doing 13 one way (26 total) Marly was with us for about 10-12 of them. Recommended path.
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!
We rode from the Jenny Creek trailhead (mile 3.8) to the Tip Top Tunnel entrance (mile 25.3?) and back, for about 43 miles total. There were a couple things to mention. The previous reviewer says the tunnel is open, he means the shorter Gun Creek tunnel, not Tip Top which is still a mess inside. FYI near Carver there are a couple miles of actual paved trail that we did not know would be there, kind of an odd section to be paved but it's there! Also the last mile or so to Tip Top is rougher gravel and has had the gates vandalized and people can drive right up to the tunnel, we met a couple side-by-sides on the section.
The gravel is pretty well packed most of the route, but horse tracks have made it rough for bikes in a few sections. Two sections had loose gravel that was hard to ride through with my hybrid bike. The trail station and farm store at the Swamp Branch trailhead is really nice - give them some business and buy something. The only other stores we saw were a dollar general and old gas station convenience store in Royalton. Water fasucets were turned off and bathrooms locked in late June 2021 when we were there. Also one of the neighbors has a dog that routinely follows people for miles as we were told - we couldn't outrun her on our bikes until she got tired after Royalton.
As of May 10, 2021, The Tunnel is Open! I rode 22 miles of the trail (from The North Eastern entry point at Paintsville to Royalton. (Note, the trail goes beyond Royalton another 12 miles). Along the trail, there are two trail heads that provide parking—one at around 6 miles from the Northern trail entry point and the other at Royalton. The most scenic part of the trail is between the 10 miles between these two trailheads. The highlight of the entire trail is the tunnel. It is worth seeing and going through. Note, much of the trail follows a country road and cuts through people’s yards. There are several wonderful bridges along with the trial. The trail is mostly level, smooth, and consists of crushed stone. I give it four stars out of 5 due to the trail being a good condition and easy to ride, but much of it not very scenic. (The middle ten miles I give 5 stars).
We found the Royalton start and rode the trail to the 660 foot tunnel, about 4 miles. Crushed stone with some horse traffic, but no bikers on a Saturday in October. Next day found Haver Hill entrance, but with no parking readily available. Again no bikers.
Just finished this trail today, not all 18 miles in one day (yet)! So far our favorite trailhead is Jane Beshear. Great riding in either direction. Tip top tunnel is closed, but still enjoyable ride. It’s 6+ miles west of the trailhead, with a significant portion paved. Less than 4 miles heading east and you get to ride through the Gun Creek tunnel. Another 6 miles from there will take you to the Swamp Branch trailhead and Griffith Family farms (great stop!). The Jenny’s creek trailhead also has a large parking area. Very clean, very blessed to have this in Eastern Kentucky. So far, on 3 of our 5 rides, we’ve seen multiple deer and a fox :-)
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