Ohio
77
www.stateparks.com
Kelleys Island State Park 'Kelleys Island' © Jeff Hudak
Kelleys Island State Park.
upload your photos

view photogallery

USA Parks
Ohio
Northwest Ohio Region
Kelleys Island State Park
KELLEYS ISLAND STATE PARK
KELLEYS ISLAND STATE PARK
Catawba Island 4049 E. Moores Dock Road
Port Clinton, Ohio   43452

Phone: 419-797-4530
Reservations: 866-644-6727
Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Totem along Highway 575'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/11/12. View along Highway 575.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glacial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/11/12. Glacial Grooves State Memorial.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glacial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/11/12.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glacial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/11/12.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken along West Lake Shore Drive. A view to the mainland.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Quarry'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park
'East Quarry'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park
'East Quarry'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park
'Sunset on the Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken along West Lake Shore Drive.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Sandy Beach'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View above Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Sandy Beach'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View above Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Sandy Beach'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View above Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Heron'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View at Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Heron'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View at Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Cedar Point'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View of Cedar Point from Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Marblehead'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View of Marblehead from Sandy Beach.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View from Kelleys Island State Park area.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View along East Lake Shore Drive.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Marblehead Lighthouse'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View of the lighthouse, with Cedar Point in the background.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Seaway Marina'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View of the marina, on your way back to the mainland.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Jet Express'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View of the Jet Express while docked at the island.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Lake Erie Water Snake'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

A view of this non-poisonous water snake, atop the rocks at the State Park.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Kelleys Island'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Another view along East Lake Shore Drive.

Kelleys Island State Park
'West Bay Inn'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

View along West Lake Shore Drive at sunset.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Wood Carving'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Wood carving, at its best.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Quarry'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Kelleys Island State Park
'Mallard Mates'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken along West Lake Shore Drive.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glacial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/12/12.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glascial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/12/12.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Glacial Grooves State Memorial'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo Taken on 6/12/12.

Kelleys Island State Park
'Heron and Water Snakes'
© Copyright Jeff Hudak

Photo taken on 6/11/12.

The family campground contains 45 non-electric and 84 electric sites, showers, flush toilets, and a dump station. A volleyball court and playground offer more to do. The camp office loans games and sports equipment to registered campers. Pet camping is permitted on designated sites. A youth group camp is available by reservation for organized groups. Six miles of hiking trails lead to scenic vistas, historic sites and two nature preserves, North Pond Nature Preserve, and the North Shore Nature Preserve, offering excellent locations for watching wildlife. Picnic areas, a picnic shelter, launch ramps, fishing access areas and a 100-foot swimming beach are also available. Limited hunting is permitted in designated areas of the park. Check with the park office for details. Kelleys Island can be reached by ferry from Sandusky or Marblehead Peninsula. Two premium Yurts, complete with efficiency kitchen, bath with shower and furnished living area, along with two Rent-A-Camp units are available during the summer season.
Nature of the Area
Limestone cliffs, historic wineries, crystal caverns and a shimmering Great Lake greet visitors to the Lake Erie Islands state parks. These five state parks offer unique island retreats with an atmosphere both festive and casual. Fishing, boating and swimming can be enjoyed at each park.

Several parks comprise the Lake Erie Island group. The islands were formed during the glacial period when massive ice sheets entered Ohio. Glaciers gouged and scoured the bedrock; their tremendous weight left deep depressions which filled with meltwater, forming the Great Lakes.

Lake Erie, the smallest of the Great Lakes, is shallow--allowing for violent storms with high waves. The lake is divided into three basins. The western basin has an average depth of 25 to 30 feet; the central basin averages 61 feet; and the eastern basin shows an average depth of 120 feet.

Lake Erie has high nutrient levels and warm temperatures which produce greater numbers and varieties of fish than any other Great Lake. Annual catches nearly equal the combined catch of all other Great Lakes. Yellow perch, smallmouth bass, white bass, channel catfish and walleye are dominant species.

The islands are composed of limestone bedrock. Small scratches in the rock surface known as glacial striations are common while major grooves such as those found at Kelleys Island are rare but awesome. Vast stands of red cedar and the presence of underground caverns, both associated with limestone are found here. The islands and shoreline support a variety of reptiles including the state's highest concentration of the harmless fox snake. The timber rattlesnake was at one time quite prevalent on the islands but is now gone from the area. Rattlesnake Island was so named due to the presence of this reptile years ago.

Migrating songbirds rest here before winging across the lake. Hundreds of different species have been identified, making this one of the best birdwatching areas in the country. Several nesting pairs of the magnificent bald eagle are located in the area.
History of the Area
Prior to the War of 1812, the Lake Erie Island region had been occupied by Ottawa and Huron (Wyandot) Indian tribes at different times throughout the years. A testimony to their existence on the islands is carved in Inscription Rock on Kelleys Island. Pictographic writings over 500 years old are etched in this massive limestone boulder.The Ottawa and Huron were eventually moved out by European settlers. The War of 1812 ended the last Indian threat to the European settlement of Ohio. One decisive naval battle of that war was fought in Put-In-Bay, off the shores of South Bass Island. Oliver Hazard Perry with an inferior fleet defeated the British making famous his saying, "We have met the enemy and they are ours." The victory gave the Americans control of Lake Erie and led to the ultimate defeat of the British in that war.

The islands remained sparsely settled until 1854 when J.D. Rivers purchased five of the islands. At first he turned Put-In-Bay into a sheep ranch, having at one time a herd of 2,000, but eventually he converted the island into a fruit farm. Despite the extreme northern location, the islands have the longest frost-free period of any area in Ohio due to the stabilizing effect of the lake.

It soon became apparent to islanders that the cultivation of grapes was very profitable. The grape culture has had a dramatic influence on the islands, sometimes called the "Wine Islands." By 1887, more than one-third of the grape product and nearly one-half of the wine product of the entire state was credited to this area. Wines from these islands were once pronounced by the best judges as being comparable to the best productions of France. Several island wineries still exist today.

In addition to raising fruits, the islands supported other profitable industries. Logging of red cedar, quarrying for limestone and the propagation of fish provided additional means of support.

For over a century, South Bass Island has been famous as a summer resort. Ruins of the Victory Hotel, destroyed by fire in 1919, are still evident. Tourism thrives today making the islands one of the most popular vacation spots in the state. The five areas comprising Lake Erie Island state parks were added to the state park system in the early 1950s.
FACILITIES AND ACTIVITIES OVERVIEW
GeneralLand, acres677
 Water, acresGreat Lake
Day-UseFishingyes
 Huntingyes
 Hiking Trail, miles5
 Picnickingyes
 Swimming Beach, feet100
 Nature Programsyes
BoatingBoating LimitsUnlimited HP
 Launch Ramps, #1
CampingPrimative, #45
 Electric Sites, #82
 Pets Permittedyes
 Flush Toiletsyes
 Dumpstationyes
 Showersyes
 Rent-A-Camp Sites, #2
 Youth Group Camp, capacity50
 Rent-A-Yurt, #2
WinterCross-Country Skiingyes
 Ice Skatingyes
 Ice Fishingyes
Nearby Accommodations
Camp Patmos - Kelleys Island, OHConference Center
Week long youth camps. Located on the shores of Kelleys Island. Guests will learn to sail, wakeboard, waterski while enjoying the beauty of the Lake Erie island.
Web Site: camppatmos.com
0.8 miles from park*


Get directions
to this park:

by Town and state
OR
by zip code

Nearby Parks


Area Attractions
Several other state parks are near the Lake Erie Islands. Crane Creek State Park, west of Port Clinton, is one of the state's foremost birding areas and is notable for its spring and fall bird migrations. East Harbor State Park on Marblehead Peninsula sports the largest campground in the Ohio state park system. Swimming, picnicking, boating and fishing are popular at East Harbor. Marblehead Lighthouse, built in 1821, is the oldest lighthouse in continuous operation of the Great Lakes and Ohio's 73rd state park. It is located off S.R. 163 on the east side of the Village of Marblehead.

State nature preserves located in the area include Sheldon Marsh, Old Woman Creek, Erie Sand Barrens and DuPont Marsh. Contact the ODNR Division of Natural Areas and Preserves for more information.

The Ottawa County Visitors Bureau is an excellent source for travel options and ideas all around the Lake Erie Islands area.
Things To Do in the Area
Camp Patmos - Kelleys Island, OHFamily Outting
Week long youth camps. Located on the shores of Kelleys Island. Guests will learn to sail, wakeboard, waterski while enjoying the beauty of the Lake Erie island.
Web Site: camppatmos.com
0.8 miles from park*
Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
August 26 Excellent by mthcns
Best time ever, park employees excellent, especially Ron & Alice!
July 14 30 years of camping by Kelli
My family has met here every summer for the last 30 years. Some from Ohio, some from Maryland. We always have a great time. Lots to do. Golf carts, winery, minature golf, shopping, a few bars, island hopping, swimming, fishing, jet skis, and more. The lake is beautiful.


Area Campgrounds

Bayshore Estates Campground
2311 Cleveland Road
Sandusky, OH
419-625-7906


Camper Village
One Cedar Point Drive
Sandusky, OH
419-626-0830


Cedarlane RV Park
2926 N. E. Catawba Rd.
Port Clinton, OH
419-797-9907


Fox's Den Campground
P. O. Box 345
Put-In-Bay, OH
419-285-5001


Traveland's Camp-Sandusky
3518 Tiffen Avenue
Sandusky, OH
419-621-0787


Family Camping Center
2318 E. Harbor Rd.
Port Clinton, OH
419-734-5580


Surf Motel & RV Campground
230 East Main Street
Marblehead, OH
419-798-4823


Tall Timbers Campground Resort
340 S. Christy Chapel Road
Port Clinton, OH
419-732-3938


Shade Acres Campground & Cottages
1810 W. Catawba Rd.
Port Clinton, OH
419-797-4681


Camp Sandusky
3518 Tiffin Ave
Sandusky, OH
800-606-1375


St. Hazards Village on the Beach
1233 Fox Rd
Middle Bass Island, OH
419-285-6121


Crystal Rock Campground
710 Crystal Rock Rd
Sandusky, OH
419-684-7177


Plymouth Shore on the Bay
8010 East Bayshore Road
Marblehead, OH
419-734-3570


Area Fishing Related Businesses
Herb's Sportsman's Supply
1713 NE Catawba Rd
Port Clinton, OH
(419) 797-2455


Fishermens Trading Post
255 Se Catawba Rd
Port Clinton, OH
(419) 732-2076


Area Cabins and Lodges
Fort Firelands RV Park
5650 East Harbor Rd
Lakeside Marblhd, OH
(419) 734-1237


Skippers Marina & Resort
7555 East Harbor Rd
Lakeside Marblhd, OH
(419) 734-3664


Beach Cliff Lodge
4189 NW Catawba Rd
Port Clinton, OH
(419) 797-4553


Area Accommodations (over 15 miles away)
Indian Creek Camp Conference Center - Tecumseh, MICampgrounds
Enjoy Southeast Michigan's Best Family Camping experience at our clean, quiet, friendly campground. Jumping Pillow, WiFi, Paddle Boats, Minigolf, Swimming, Bicycling and more
Web Site: indiancreekcamping.com
68 miles from park*
View
Photo Gallery
Share Your
Kelleys Island State Park
Photos
(click here)
Weather Forecast, (43438)

Directions
Catawba Island , 4049 E. Moores Dock Road, Port Clinton, OH 43452

USA Parks
Ohio
Northwest Ohio Region
Kelleys Island State Park
© 2014 StateParks.com