When you park at the North Parking Lot (the car icon on the Google Map below), you’ll see a kiosk. Then descend the small hill to the left and down into the (dry) floor of the lock. This leads to the parking area near the log cabin. It is flat, paved, and suitable for families, small children, dogs, and strollers. Hike Location: Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve. If you need something new and exciting to add to your Ohio bucket list, there’s a little-known nature preserve that’s perfect for both hiking and biking. amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; Thanks for the information. of Natural Resources (ODNR) is offering a. amzn_assoc_title = "TrekOhio's Amazon Picks"; Immediately after the turn you’ll see a parking area for Blackhand Gorge. To go the Marie Hickey Trail (car icons), prior to the Licking River bridge there will be a turnoff to the right onto Rock Haven Rd (if you cross the bridge, you’ve missed the turnoff). Canal Lock Trail 0.4 Mile Chestnut Trail 1.4 Miles Marie Hickey Trail 2.0 Miles Oak Knob Trail 0.6 Mile Quarry Rim Trail 1.0 Mile Private Property Fishing is permitted along the south bank of the Licking River from the Creek Crossing east to the Mail Parking Lot and along the Canal Lock Trail on the north shore. This is a bicycle rail trail and is used by bicyclists and pedestrians. Continuing on, the path turns and passes through a grove of bushes and small trees; this part of the trail may be a bit mucky in the spring. Un-paved hiking trails on both the north and south side of the gorge provide more … From Your beautiful photos, I love Mini-waterfall. This dedication process ensures that the area's scientific,educational and aesthetic values will be preserved indefinitely for use by all Ohioans. We generally begin with the mowed grassy path to the left. Copyright 1989-2018, Natural Born Hikers, All rights reserved. The trail is well laid out (with bridges and wooden stairs in places) and quite pretty. I’ve had Blackhand Gorge on my might want to hike list. At the top of the hill, the trail will merge with the dirt service road for a ways, and then head back into the woods (you’ll see a small wood post with an arrow on the left side of the road). If you arrive in the spring, listen carefully as you climb the hill. A couple of things to add here. There are two side trails off the main trail (not suitable for small children). Pets are permitted only on the Blackhand Trail (paved bike trail) and must be controlled on a leash no more than 6 feet in length in hand. Follow the road and it will turn sharply right. This is the former path of the Interurban rail (long since gone). The single place for all things related to Blackhand Gorge in Newark, Ohio. It is a screenshot of Google Maps. After the Quarry Rim Trail, a short 0.1 mile connector trail along the Blackhand Trail takes you to the start of the Chestnut Trail, a 1.8 mile long trail that starts off with significant elevation gain, well over 150 ft (which in Ohio, is quite a hike! The trail head is across the road and a bit to the west. Shortly after crossing the bridge, you’ll see a sign for the Oak Knob Trail. Blackhand Trail is a 4.26 mile paved wheelchair accessible trail that essentially follows a former railway bed along the south side of the Licking River. To the right you may glimpse a natural gas well. Now you have three choices: On what is the return trip to the Columbus area for us, we often have a late lunch at the Bob Evans at the intersection of SR 16 and Cherry Valley Rd. Thank you, Sartenada. Thanks Bob for all your great info, we had a nice hike and definitely plan on going back. The Canal Lock Trail head is to the west of the Licking River on the south side of the road. Checked my GPS – Marie Hickey trail is 2.6 miles. Follow the path as it turns to the right and heads up hill. Blackhand Gorge is a singletrack mountain bike trail in Nashport, Ohio. Black Hand Gorge State Nature Preserve is a 970-acre area with both paved and unpaved trails. amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon"; This is a small hemlock grove containing a narrow stone gorge and a seasonal waterfall below a small, wooden bridge. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve: A Gorgeous trail through a gorge - See 80 traveler reviews, 72 candid photos, and great deals for Newark, OH, at Tripadvisor. There are three different trail groupings at Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve, but for the longest time we only knew of the main parking lot and the trail head that leads off from there. This trail ascends to a ridge line and loops around several abandoned rock quarries that have filled to become small lakes. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve is a 956-acre area that was dedicated as an interpretive nature preserve in 1975. Also, the ranger in charge there now has done a lot of work clearing old trails, and has reopened the Beaver Dam trail, which was from the 80s when I lived out there. Once you walk through the tunnel, the typical thing people do is go down a bit to the path on the left that leads to another part of the canal path on the river. Blackhand Gorge Trail is a 8.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Heath, Ohio that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail will continue (past the wooden posts) to the left paralleling the river. The icon used to locate the feature on the map is described in parentheses after each heading. This is the trail head. The Marie Hickey Trail at Blackhand Gorge Nature Preserve is a hidden gem. The 1.4 mile trail known as the Chestnut Trail passes by a decent sized seasonal waterfall. TrekOhio is an Amazon affiliate. I recommend Blackhand Gorge for anyone wanting to hike in Central Ohio. The trail on the right goes uphill, while the one on the left descends gently a short ways and leads to a grassy, mowed path. amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve: Paved trail - See 82 traveler reviews, 72 candid photos, and great deals for Newark, OH, at Tripadvisor. Great short hike. © Deborah Platt, Robert Platt and TrekOhio.com 2012 to 2019, The Ohio Dept. Does anyone know if this can lead to the Marie Hickey trail? Trailforks ranks trails with a combination of user ratings and raw trail usage data from rides. A detour of the flood-damaged portion allows trail users to access the full length of the trail. Learn how to create your own. The Quarry Rim Trail and Chestnut Trail, two hiking-only trails that branch off from the Blackhand Gorge Trail, offer additional opportunities for trail users to explore the beautiful and historic nature preserve. At the intersection with the Maria Hickey trail, go left up the hill. This photo summarizes much of what there is to see in the Blackhand Gorge. This trail is not a loop (you’ll backtrack on the return), but it follows the ridges above the gorge and passes a seasonal waterfall. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve, Ohio The Chestnut Trail is a 2.3 mile long path through a hardwood forest—in order to access the trail follow the multi-use, paved Blackhand Trail for a little over 2 miles to reach the trailhead. amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart"; You’ll eventually end up at the abandoned rail tunnel. Thanks for sharing this. We hiked the canal trail that leads to the large cave and the big rock this evening. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve in Licking County is home to 10 miles of trails that showcase some incredible views, Ohio history and other unique features. TrekOhio’s Reviews provide an alphabetical listing of all the parks for which we’ve published illustrated articles. The Chestnut Trail is a 2.3 mile long path through a hardwood forest—in order to access the trail follow the multi-use, paved Blackhand Trail for a little over 2 miles to reach the trailhead. August 29, 2020 Farther along the paved path, is the trail head for the Chestnut Trail. amzn_assoc_linkid = "4ea0038170a64f214707d3b343c57158"; Share the post "Blackhand Gorge: Hiking Trails". Park here and cross the road to go to the Canal Lock. Oak Knob Trail – Half mile, Marie Hickey side trail, offering many birding opportunities. The trail terminates back on the paved path. Chestnut Trail – Quiet out and back trail away from the Blackhand Gorge. We’ve also gone through the gorge on kayaks. Uploaded: 10/27/2020. The Blackhand Gorge Bike Trail is wheelchair accessible, and plans are in the works to re-pave it. Both the road and the trail terminate back at the parking lot. Blackhand Gorge is a great option if you want to see multiple waterfalls in one outing and can make a day out of it. These articles describe what our experience was like when we visited the park. This trail was originally the rail line used by steam locomotives. It looks like Jamison may have stated it does, but a little confused since not familiar with the area. You’ll go up and down (crossing another stream), and soon you’ll see a dark grove ahead. amzn_assoc_region = "US"; But, since it is a multi-use trail, you can traverse it by bicycle. Would love to know how long these trails are, anyone have any idea? I opted for the 20K to see how my knee would handle trails. The trail passes through an area known as the “deep cut” where engineers had to blast through the sandstone to continue the route of the railroad. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve: Quarry and Chestnut Trails (Blog Hike #73) Trail: Quarry Rim Trail. The waterfalls are best to see in the springtime, when they have the most water flow. There are three markers on the map below. Follow this trail until you reach a sign for the Chestnut Trail. You can still see the “deep cut” where engineers had to cut through a large outcropping of bedrock to lay the rail. To see it in more detail, click on it to view a larger version of the image, or view it directly on Google Maps where you can zomm in or out. Quarry Rim Trail – Mile long, Blackhand Trail side trail … Shortly after crossing the bridge over the Licking River, the preserve’s main entrance will be on your right. All visitors must remain on trails unless a permit has been obtained for restricted areas. We’ve also seen deer on many occasions. You may hear falling water. After a few minutes, you’ll see a small gravel parking lot with a wooden kiosk to the left. As mentioned above, the multi-use trail is 4.2 miles. What appeared to be the waterfall was some cool carved out caves to hike. The Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve is a four mile (6 km) long sandstone formation through which the Licking River flows in Licking County, Ohio, United States. Note that the publication date is listed near the top of the article. Blackhand Gorge Nature preserve contains a 4-mile bike path and other hiking trails, as well as a portion of the Ohio-Erie Canal. The main trail, known as Blackhand Trail extends 4.2 miles along the south side of the river starting at the main parking lot. The Remote Trail Through Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve In Ohio Winds Through A Sandstone Gorge And An Old Railway Ohio was made for nature lovers, history buffs and explorers. amzn_assoc_asins = "B079J4ZQ6S,B0086GYPLU,B07G4L72NS,B076JJGMSY"; My favorite times to go are in the autumn to take in the colored leaves, or when the leaves have fallen to get a better look at the contour of the land. If that describes your route, no matter what your GPS device tells you, don’t get off of OH-16 E until you reach OH-146. This is one area that definitely belongs on your Ohio hiking bucket list. At one point you may glimpse (to the right) the remains of an old building foundation. amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "free086-20"; This trail was originally the rail line used by steam locomotives. Along the trail, you are likely to see white-tailed deer, and gray squirrels, and upon closer inspection, you might discover a stick insect and a few wildflower displays. The Blackhand Gorge is a state nature preserve located about 7 miles east of Newark, just south of Rt. If was a fun discovery for us. It’s perhaps 1/2 mile (one way) through the canal lock to the tunnel. Back up at the cliff edge, the trail follows along the cliff. There’s a small unmarked side trail leads down to a pair of seasonal waterfalls. Help support TrekOhio by making purchases through Amazon links on this site. The Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve is a 4-mile-long (6.4 km) sandstone formation through which the Licking River flows in Licking County, Ohio, United States. As for Marie Hickey, I agree, it’s my favorite short trail in Ohio. It’s a pleasant scenic ride. It is my favorite trail in Central Ohio. Send comments on this web site to. The significance of each icon is explained below. Thanks, I didn’t think I could handle the 4.2 mi, and was hoping the others would be shorter. This is the perfect place to take little ones and a great introduction to hiking with kids. Located 12 miles (19 km) east of Newark near the tiny town of Toboso, 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) along the gorge were designated an Ohio Nature Preserve in 1975. Turn right on OH-146, then shortly afterwards, turn right on Toboso Road. That is awesome post. Near the kiosk, there’s a dirt road behind a fence that leads straight ahead and two trail entrances to the left and right. The waterfall is more commonly accessed from the canal lock trail. amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "manual"; After the grove, the trail eventually climbs to a bluff overlooking the Licking River. To your left will be a valley and (in the distance) a rail line, to your right (in the distance) a meadow. This is a bicycle rail trail and is used by bicyclists and pedestrians. View maps, videos, photos, and reviews of Blackhand Gorge bike trail in Nashport. Bicycles, skates and skateboards are permitted only on Blackhand Trail. Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserve: Beautiful nature trail - See 82 traveler reviews, 72 candid photos, and great deals for Newark, OH, at Tripadvisor. 16 in Licking County. real or spam, TrekOhio’s Regional Guide to Parks lists over 900 parks, nature preserves and trails in Ohio. Our Home page lists our latest park reviews, nature articles, and other related information. Thanks. Be sure to check the site’s official page for the latest updates. Blackhand Trail and Chestnut Trail. Pets are not permitted on other trails in the preserve. It had been grown over and unmarked for the better part of 20 years, but has since been cleared and joined to the quarry rim trail. We hiked the Marie Hickey trail this past weekend and really enjoyed it. I hiked the loop in a clockwise direction and then made my way back to the trailhead to emerge onto the paved path. I used to run multiple loops of it when I lived near there a few years ago. The trail leads to the top of a scenic U-shaped plateau and winds around the plateau edges and then goes back down to another bridge and joins up with the Marie Hickey Trail again. You will first pass the Buttonbush Swamp Overlook Trail (now closed-2005) then the Quarry Rim trail will come into view. The west end of the Blackhand Gorge Trail has two gravel parking areas: the old one off of Brushy Fork Road and a new one just south of the bridge on Brownsville Road (County Highway 668). The multi-use trail is 8.4 miles round trip. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Using the menu near the top of the page, select a region, then a county. My comment is ... Towards the end of the trail, you will begin going downhill into a hollow, it is here that you will find the junction for the loop segment of the hike. If you are coming from Toboso, the trail will be on the left past the railroad trestle, if you parked off Brushy Fork Road you will find it on the right just past the “creek crossing.” Chestnut Trail is a return trail with a short loop at its terminus—the trail begins by climbing a hill along side some Black Hand sandstone outcroppings, it then levels out and follows the contour of the Licking River below. On the opposite side of Licking River you’ll eventually see Blackhand Rock (a sign marks its location). You are about halfway along the trail. This is a side trail that loops back to the main trail. I was born in Toboso and went to elementary school there, so I have a very special place in my heart for BHG. It is possible that renovations or other changes have occurred since the article was posted. Parking lots are provided at the east and west ends of the trail. To reach this waterfall begin on the main paved Blackhand Gorge Trail. 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