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Scioto Trail State Park 'Stewart Lake' © Victor F Artigas
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USA Parks
Ohio
Southeast Ohio Region
Scioto Trail State Park
SCIOTO TRAIL STATE PARK
SCIOTO TRAIL STATE PARK
144 Lake Road
Chillicothe, Ohio   45601

Phone: 740-887-4818
Reservations: 866-644-6727
Scioto Trail State Park
'Stewart Lake'

Scioto Trail State Park
'Stewart Lake'

Scioto Trail S. P

A small, quiet park nestled in beautiful 9,000-acre Scioto Trail State Forest, this state park is an undisturbed wooded refuge just south of Chillicothe. The ridgetops and winding forest roads offer breathtaking vistas of the Scioto River Valley. The beauty and remoteness of Scioto Trail offers the best of escapes to park visitors.
Nature of the Area
Located in the Appalachian foothills bordering the Scioto River, the park's rugged ridgetops and wooded valleys support a host of natural wonders. This densely forested hill country is reminiscent of the southern Appalachians supporting a magnificent stand of oak and hickory. In spring, the forest trails are lined with flowering dogwood and redbud trees. The forest floor displays woodland wildflowers including spring beauties, Dutchman's breeches, wild blue phlox and wild geranium. Ferns, mosses and lichens coat the sandstone outcroppings. Mushroom hunters delight in the abundance of the delicious morel mushroom.

The remoteness of the area and dense forest provides excellent habitat for some of Ohio's most elusive wildlife. Wild turkey populations are thriving in this region along with ruffed grouse and white-tailed deer. Small mammals of Scioto Trail include red fox, skunk, opossum, gray squirrel and raccoon among many others. Rare sightings of bobcat and black bear have been reported. Many reptiles and amphibians find the woodlands and streams of the area desirable.
History of the Area
Scioto Trail State Park is nestled in an area rich with reminders of Ohio's prehistoric peoples. These Mound Builders left extensive earthworks throughout the Scioto River Valley and its tributaries. Serpent Mound, in northeastern Adams County, is a 1,000-foot snake effigy mound built by the Adenas. Other smaller Adena mounds exist in Ross County. The Adena culture is named after the estate of early Ohio statesman Thomas Worthington. Adena, near Chillicothe, was the site of the first mound excavation attributed to these prehistoric people.

Other extensive earthworks exist north of Chillicothe on the Scioto floodplain. Mound City is attributed to a more advanced culture called the Hopewells. Other Hopewell mounds in the Scioto Trail region are Seip Mound, Spruce Hill and Fort Hill. The importance of the Scioto River to the early development of Ohio carried through from these prehistoric peoples to the Shawnee and first pioneer settlers.

The Shawnee utilized the river as their primary means of transportation from one village to another. The Scioto Trail was an Indian trail that followed the Scioto River from northern Ohio to the Kentucky hunting grounds. The trail was later used by settlers who came upriver from Portsmouth to the first capital of Ohio--Chillicothe. There is a replica of the first church in the area, Chillicothe's First Presbyterian, in Caldwell Lake Hollow. This plain log structure gives testimony to the simple lifestyle of early Ohioans.

The first European settlers came to the area in the 1790s. In 1796, General Nathaniel Massie and a small group of settlers started the town of Chillicothe. Many of these first Ohioans were veterans of the Revolutionary War. The land west of the Scioto River and east of the Little Miami River was set aside for Virginia veterans of the Revolution. Land allotments were based on time served and rank of these soldiers.

Initial purchases of land for the park and forest began in 1922. Most of the major development took place in the 1930s during the original Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) days. They constructed most of the roads, lakes and the original recreational facilities.
FACILITIES AND ACTIVITIES OVERVIEW
GeneralLand, acres218
 Water, acres30
 Nearby State Forest, acres9151
Day-UseFishingyes
 Huntingyes
 Hiking Trail, miles5
 Backpack Trailyes
 Picnickingyes
 Bridle Trailsyes
BoatingBoating Limits-1
 Launch Ramps, #1
CampingPrimative, #33
 Electric Sites, #40
 Pets Permittedyes
 Dumpstationyes
 Camper Cabins, #2
WinterSleddingyes
 Cross-Country Skiingyes
 Ice Skatingyes
 Ice Fishingyes
Camping
The wooded campground at Caldwell Lake offers 56 sites of which 40 are equipped with electricity. Pit latrines, dump stations, fire rings and picnic tables are provided. A primitive walk-in camp located near Stewart Lake offers an additional 18 non-electric sites.
Nearby Accommodations
Walnut Creek Campground Resort - Chillicothe, OHCottages and Cabins
Rustic beauty in a peaceful, clean atmosphere is the secret to this Family Retreat. The serene splendor of Mother Nature is your reward for visiting Walnut Creek. We offer cabin rentals for those who want the convenience with less effort.
5.8 miles from park*
Boating
Two small lakes offer boating with electric motors only. Canoeing is excellent on these quiet waters. A launch ramp is provided.


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Nearby Parks


Picnicking
Several scenic areas offer excellent picnicking opportunities. Tables and grills are provided. A shelter house is available near the Stewart Lake picnic area, and a gazebo is located on Caldwell Lake Island. Both facilities my be reserved for a fee by calling the park office, or can be used on a first-come, first-served basis if not previously reserved.
Trails
Twelve miles of hiking trails and 17 miles of bridle trails lead to scenic overlooks and breathtaking vistas. A portion of the Buckeye Trail which links the four corners of Ohio passes through the state forest.
Area Attractions
A monument erected in 1842 stands at the entrance of Scioto Trail State Forest to commemorate William Hewitt. As a hermit, he lived for fourteen years in a cave near what is now the park and surrounding forest. Hewitt died in 1838 at the age of seventy after becoming a local legend. Eventually, the cave was whittled away by highway development and the monument was moved 1,000 feet north of its original site to its present location.

Nearby are Great Seal State Park which is located north of Chillicothe off State Route 159, Lake White State Park which is located near Waverly on State Route 220, and Tar Hollow State Park and State Forest which are located off State Route 327 near the Ross-Hocking-Vinton county lines.

The famous outdoor historical drama, Tecumseh!, is presented mid-June through Labor Day weekend at Sugarloaf Mountain Amphitheatre. The Ross County Historical Society in Chillicothe features exhibits of pioneer crafts, firearms, furniture, toys and clothing. The museum is open March through November. One mile north of Chillicothe on State Route 104 is the Mound City/Hopewell Culture Group National Historic Park. The area is a prehistoric Indian complex of 23 burial mounds. A museum and visitors' center are open daily.
Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
January 22 One of our favorite parks. by Pam Boone
We have been camping here at this park for over 30 yrs. every July 4. Our Lore Family Reunion has taken place here too for 40 yrs or more. The employees are friendly and kind. The park is just beautiful. Relaxing, refreshing and it always makes you want to go come back.


Area Campgrounds

Sun Valley Campground
10105 C.R. 550, Box 27
Chillicothe, OH
740-775-3490


Forest Haven
2344 Walnut Creek Rd
Chillicothe, OH
740-774-1203


Area Fishing Related Businesses
Bill's Bait House
4308 State Route 220
Waverly, OH
(740) 947-2542


Bait & Tackle
381 N High St
Chillicothe, OH
(740) 774-1985


D & K Bait & Tackle Dealers
288 W Hydell Rd
Chillicothe, OH
(740) 772-1836


Area Accommodations (over 15 miles away)
Rocky Fork Lake Cottages - Hillsboro, OHCottages and Cabins
Lake Front but not lake view. This cottage is situated on 3 Acres, mostly wooded. Rocky Fork Lake is a 2,000 acre quiet and secluded lake. Because of the heavy concentration of trees the lake is a secluded paradise hidden in the woods.
Web Site: vacationhomerentals.com/52625
29.2 miles from park*
Rose's Vacation Cabin - Glouster, OHCottages and Cabins
Burr Oak State Park - Located in the rolling hills of southeastern Ohio. Rose's Vacation Cabin Rental is a special place to make your Honeymoon, Anniversary, or Family Getaway a relaxing experience.
Web Site: rosesvacationcabinrental.com
53.4 miles from park*
Haven Inn the Hills - Logan, OHCottages and Cabins
Great for a private relaxing get away. Whether you are looking for rest and relaxation with that special someone, or the best cook-out for family and friends Haven Inn The Hills is the answer for you.
Web Site: haveninnthehills.com
26.2 miles from park*
The Grand Bentley Lodge - Rockbridge, OHCottages and Cabins
A spectacular, one-of-a-kind log home in the scenic Hocking Hills. Stunning solid walnut flooring. A grand great room with huge windows and a two-story stone fireplace. A spectacular recreation area with pool table, home theater, and a large hot tub right outside.
Web Site: grandbentleylodge.com
33.3 miles from park*
Area Resources
Hocking Hills Internet Guide - hockinghills.com - Rockbridge, OHTourism
Offical Guide to Southeastern Ohio's Scenic Wonderland, the Hocking Hills. The 9 State Parks and State Forests. How to get there, things to do, interesting local merchants, what to see, places to stay. Reserve your cabin or campsite online
Web Site: hockinghills.com
24.4 miles from park*
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144 Lake Road, Chillicothe, Ohio 45601

USA Parks
Ohio
Southeast Ohio Region
Scioto Trail State Park
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