Lancaster, OH Atv Trails and Maps

469 Reviews

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Recent Trail Reviews

T. J. Evans Panhandle Trail

A Successful Example of Rail with Trail

October, 2020 by orangedoug

I rode nearly 20 miles on a round trip on the T.J. Evans Panhandle Trail. The trail appears to have been created on an abandoned spur that runs along an active rail line. I parked and started at a parking lot that abutted the railroad tracks at the corner of Marne and Licking Valley Roads near the center of the trail's length. I chose this particular starting point as it seemed to be the most visible of the parking lots along the trail. While other reviews here have mentioned a lack of parking along the trail, I would also add that there is also a lack of bathrooms or Porta-Johns along the trail as well.

I first headed east from Marne out to the eastern terminus of the trail at Felumlee Rd. The trail climbs as you head east. The slope is typical for a rail trail so you really aren't straining to climb but you are aware that you are climbing.

Once I returned from the eastern end, I pushed on to reach the trail's western terminus in Newark, Ohio. The western half of the trail is much more flat and the scenery becomes more urban and industrial. A highlight of the trail comes between Lambs Lane and Swans Road where you travel by the Longaberger Basket Building. The building looks like a giant picnic basket that the company sells. From here you will travel through an industrial area which will give way to a neighborhood of homes until you reach the end of the trail at North Morris Street.

As mentioned by other reviews here, there is a chain link fence that separates the trail and the railroad. While some find that this fence ruins what little scenic beauty they see in this trail, I think that it is a small price to pay to have a trail of decent length to ride on. There are many trails across the country that a trying to connect to a certain destination within a city or town but are finding completing their trails difficult because of the inability to get a rail with trail agreement worked out with a local railroad company. Those trail groups should inquire with the trail leaders in the city of Newark and Licking County, Ohio how they were able to successfully create this trail.

Despite the lack of parking and bathrooms I think the T.J. Evans Panhandle Trail is a nice trail, particularly if you live in the Newark, Ohio region.

Blackhand Gorge Trail

This is a Trail That is Worth the Drive

October, 2020 by orangedoug

I did an out-and back ride on this trail for a distance of 8.5 miles. The trail runs through the Licking River's Blackhand Gorge east of Newark, Ohio. For the most part, this rail trail runs about 20 to 30 feet above the river's surface through the gorge. On the western part of the trail you drop off of the original rail bed and dip down and through a tributary creek called Brushy Fork before returning back to the rail bed and crossing over a bridge spanning Claylick Creek at the western end of the trail at Brownsville Road SE.

The trail is paved and the surface is in good shape. Stay on the trail as the steep banks of the Licking River in the gorge could make getting back out nearly impossible. The trail is very scenic with the river, rock formations, the nearby trails, and in autumn the spectacular fall colors. Keep an eye out for the flora and fauna as some of it can't be found elsewhere in the state of Ohio.

The only drawback to this trail is that its shorter length leaves you wanting more. However, the rail right of way upon which the trail is built does cross and continue west Brownsville Rd SE. Perhaps efforts should be made to try to convert the rest of this rail line into a trail that stretches into Newark, Ohio which is already a hub for several other rail trails.

Muskingum Recreational Trail

An Unfinished Trail That Has Potential

October, 2020 by orangedoug

I rode an out-and-back ride on the Muskingum Recreational Trail starting in Dresden, Ohio. You head south out of Dresden and ride along the West bank of the Muskingum River. In a few spots, the edge of the trail drops precipitously to the river below. Fortunately, most spots with the high steep banks have a fence in place to prevent you from sliding into the river. As you head further south the trail moves away from the river for a while until you reach the current southern end of the trail where you cross over the Muskingum River on a spectacular rail bridge about 30 to 40 above the surface of the water below. TrailLink.com lists this trail as two separate segments but I was able to ride through the undeveloped middle section.

While the recognized trail segments are paved, the middle section has an ash and cinder surface from the old rail bed that this trail is built upon. Parts of this undeveloped section, however, have been resurfaced with limestone gravel that has been rolled and packed. Orange construction ribbons that have been tied to the ends of some of the branches in this area seem to indicate that there will be additional paving to this section sometime in the future. I did find the the going in this undeveloped section particularly slow.

This is a beautiful trail, but I was surprised that I had the trail entirely to myself, except for the one fellow on a lawn mower who was blowing leaves off of the trail. Being able to see the trail surface throughout my return trip was much appreciated as I was able to avoid a few of the bumps and dips in the trail surface that had previously hidden by a blanket of fallen fall leaves.

I'd think that should the Muskingum County Commissioners and the citizens of the county decide to finish the Muskingum Recreational Trail and then connect it with the Zane's Landing Trail running North out of Zanesville you'd create a beautiful destination trail for this region of Ohio.

Accordion

Kokosing Gap Trail

Mount Vernon to Gambier

October, 2020 by vicki1960

Nice bike ride from Mount Vernon to Gambier and back. Great trail though mainly wooded sections. You will cross a few nice old rail bridges on this section. And over the Kokosing River a few times.
We parked at the old train station in Mt Vernon and took the connector which is about a mile long and under construction. They are re-doing it.
We biked to Kenyan College.
Lunch near the trail at an old Diner in Mount Vernon and the food was delicious. After the ride there is an ice cream place a few hundred yards from the trail in Mount Vernon. Between Mount Vernon and Gambier there is nothing so make sure you have water/snacks.
Connecting trail are Heart of Ohio, Mohican Valley and Holmes County. All asphalt paved in great condition.

Zane's Landing Trail

A Typical City Recreational Trail

October, 2020 by orangedoug

This rail trail starts at Zane's Landing Park on the East Bank of the Muskingum River just north of the city of Zanesville's Y Bridge in downtown. Its main purpose seems to be to connect the city's youth athletic fields with downtown Zanesville. The trail parallels the river bank and heads north toward Jaycee Riverside Park and ends at Washington Street in Washington Township. The trail is flat and paved. The surface from Zane's Landing to the boat launch in Riverside Park is smooth and fairly new. The rest of the trail north of the boat launch is bumpy and jarring as there are a lot of cracks within the pavement. Hopefully this section that parallels most of the athletic fields in Riverside Park will be resurfaced next year. I was the lone cyclist on the trail on this Fall Tuesday afternoon, however, I encountered perhaps a dozen pedestrians out walking on the trail during my ride. I'd be curious to see how busy the trail becomes in the evenings or on Saturday afternoons when there are numerous youth soccer or baseball games going on in Riverside Park.

I'd like to add that should the Muskingum County Commissioners and the citizens of the county decide to connect the Zane's Landing Trail with the Muskingum Recreational Trail running south out of Dresden you'd develop a beautiful regional destination trail.

Kokosing Gap Trail

Danville to Gambier

October, 2020 by vicki1960

Danville to Gambier and back for a nice ride. Trail is mainly flat, asphalt paved in good condition. There are a few bridges to cross along the ride also through open farmlands and some wooded areas. Trail services in Danville....food and water. There is a grocery store, sub shop and Dollar Store located near the parking area.

Heart of Ohio Trail

In the Heart of Ohio

October, 2020 by vicki1960

Trail is purely a taste of what Ohio is all about. Open farmlands through small towns and add in some wooded areas as well. And this trail is flat!
We parked in Mount Vernon and accessed the trail at Ariel Foundation Park which is a cool historic place of the former PPG glass works which closed in the 1970's. We biked to Centerburg and back for a 30 mile round trip. Along the trail there is basically nothing as far as trail services so take water and snacks with you. In Centerburg you can go to the little town a few blocks off the trail. We found places to grab lunch, snacks and water.
This trail connects with several other trails. You can bike from Centerburg OH to Glendale OH on 40 miles of paved asphalt via connecting trails Kokosing Gap, Mohican Valley and Holmes County.

Genoa Trail

Beautiful trail

October, 2020 by sjf0809

This is a nice trail through the trees, especially in the Fall when the leaves were turning yellow. The road crossings in the southern portion weren't bad when using the signals. The trail surface was in good shape.

Sawmill Parkway Trail

Trail surface improved!

October, 2020 by sjf0809

I biked the trail on October 17, 2020. Many sections in the lower portion were newly paved and most curb transitions between trail and road were also new. The orange cones were still in place. There is not any crushed stone as the description mentions. I could tell that the grass had been cut back from the trail, which brought it back to intended width. So the comments of a previous reviewer who said the path was narrow, sections torn up by development and bumpy, no longer apply. The few sections that had some grass growing in the cracks were not a problem. The one section where the trail was blocked crossing the new road by a new development looked like it was ready for cement. It was not an issue for me to go around it. It is true that there isn't any shade, but trees are planted. So many many years from now, some of the trail might be in the shade. :-). I did register 9 miles, not 7.8 miles, from the parking lot by Mac Donald's on the corner of Attucks and Sawmill Parkway to the north where it hits Rt 42. Lots of parking by businesses and restaurants at the southern end point. There are many road crossings, but I still managed to get over 13 mph between the roundabouts. Overall a nice trail for the business and residential/subdivision areas.

Olentangy Trail

Listed Distances Wrong

October, 2020 by seancurtissmiller

Great trail but ultra crowded during OSU school months.

No way is this trail 22.5 miles. Not even 17.5. I have ridden this trail for many years - I get 13 miles and change from trailhead at Worthington Hills to downtown at Scioto Trail intersection.

Newark Trail

Good for commuting, not for views

October, 2020 by s9uta3q47g

I’ve ridden and walked this trail for 15 years. It gets you downtown (almost), to the Newark campus, to the west side of town. It’s not particularly well-maintained, though not bad (I’d bike but not skate). Mostly, though, it’s not scenic—it just gets you where you want to go. At the western end, it crosses a pretty metal bridge and connects directly to trails to Johnstown and to Granville. The hotel there makes a nice stop for food/drink.

T. J. Evans Panhandle Trail

Needs work

September, 2020 by tandemspeaks

We rode entire length of this trail yesterday. As previously indicated, it’s not especially scenic since you follow a chain link fence the entire length that separates trail from railroad track. But the real problem with this trail is lack of parking and upkeep. It does not have parking at either end of trail. The best place we found to park (after riding trail) is Legacy Park in Hanover. Nice playground with ball fields. There was a restroom and water fountain - out of service due to COVID-19 but would be nice when open again. The trail was overgrown with weeds and low branches in many sections. Lots of busy road crossings but traffic generally slow due to railroad track directly next to trail. Would be nice trail with maintenance and amenities - hopefully will connect to other trails in area eventually so it goes somewhere and is useful.

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