Explore Mohican State Park in Loudonville, Ohio – Waterfalls, Hiking, Covered Bridge, Gorge, Canoe, Overlook & More!

Nature and family fun is calling from the Mohican – Loudonville, Ohio area! My family spent a few days recently in Mohican Country and can’t wait to go back. We love hiking and exploring as a family and can’t believe we’ve missed all the fun of Mohican State Park for so long. Mohican is only about a hour or so from the greater Akron area, so it is an easy day trip or stay-cation any time of the year.

During our short visit, we enjoyed exploring the Mohican State Park including hiking to a waterfall, climbing a fire tower, visiting the covered bridge, hiking the Gorge overlook, and checking out the dam. We only scratched the surface of the 1,110-acre Mohican State Park and the adjacent 4,525-acre Mohican-Memorial State Forest!

Hiking at Mohican State Park

The best way to experience nature is to get into it! We love hiking and enjoyed a few hikes during our visit.

Clear Fork Gorge Overlook and Hike

There is a pull-off area at Clear Fork Gorge with a beautiful overlook of the forest and river below. How amazing this will look in summer with leaves on the trees and especially in fall when the leaves change color.  The Overlook showcases the dramatic work of glacial melt-waters that carved out the narrow Clear Fork Gorge. There are steep cliff walls made of sandstone bedrock but there is a 0.5 mile moderate trail that is safe to enjoy at the top of the gorge with great views. The gorge is over 1,000 feet wide at the top and more than 300 feet deep.  The National Park Service has dedicated the area of towering hemlocks and old-growth pine as a Registered National Natural Landmark.

Mohican State Park Covered Bridge at Lyon Falls

We love visiting covered bridges in Ohio. We were thrilled to find the Mohican State Park Covered Bridge located next to the Lyon Falls hike. You can reach the covered bridge off State Rout 97 and drive through or walk on the two pedestrian side walks. The covered bridge goes over the Clear Fork of the Mohican River. This is a perfect spot to cool your feet in the summer in the water below too. It would be a nice place for a picnic here in the warmer months. There is plenty of parking next to the bridge as it is located at the beginning of Lyons Falls Trail as well.

If you plan to hike the Hemlock Gorge Trail ( 2 miles Difficult) or the Lyons Fall Trail (2 miles Moderate), you’ll be right next to or go over the  – Leads to a scenic covered bridge Lyons Fall Trail.

Lyons Fall Trail and Big Lyons Falls

There are several ways to hike the Lyons Falls Trail, which is nice if you want a quick 1.6 mile walk or a longer 2-3 mile walk. We chose to walk just to the Big Lyons Falls, not further on to Little Lyons Falls, or the Pleasant Hill Dam as we were trying to fit as much into our short trip as possible. We were excited to see the Big Lyons Falls as it is part of our popular 18 Ohio Waterfalls that Run Fastest in Springtime article.

The hike to the waterfall runs through Clear Fork Gorge with the Mohican River on one side so it was very scenic the entire time. If you have visited the Virginia Kendall Ledges locally in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, it will seem very similar in landscape. There are large rock formations and small caves like the one above. There are many streams coming down from the hills, some of have wooden bridges over them so you can pass without mud but one you have to walk through although there are large rocks that you can easily navigate without getting wet. There were plenty of muddy spots during our hike since it rained the day before. The hike is labeled moderate but I’d consider it easy to mildly moderate compared to other trails we’ve navigated.

The Big Lyons Falls were worth the hike to get to for sure. The water falls from up about 300 feet above into a massive cave-like area. (If you love caves, check out our Ohio Caves article here.) The actual waterfall wasn’t thundering massive amounts of water – nothing like Brandywine Falls locally. That being said, it was quite the waterfall to marvel at because of the shear height it falls from. The water was COLD as you can tell in our video above.

People from as early as 1800’s have carved into the sandstone rock cliffs. I don’t condone carving into nature but I admit it was neat seeing carvings from that long ago and every time in between!

There are so many trails that we want to return to Mohican State Park to hike. Here are a few more:

We Lyons Fall Trail – 2 miles – Moderate to Difficult – follows Clear Fork Gorge and features two waterfalls
Hemlock Gorge Trail – 2 miles – Difficult – Leads to a scenic covered bridge
Clear Fork Gorge Loop Trail 0.5 mile Moderate
Grist Mill Overlook Loop Trail – 0.7 mile
Hemlock Gorge Trail – 2 miles – Difficult – Leads to a scenic covered bridge
Hog Hollow Trail – 2.5 miles
Lyons Fall Trail – 2 miles – Moderate to Difficult – follows Clear Fork Gorge and features two waterfalls
North Rim Trail – 1 mile
Pleasant Hill Trail – 3/4 mile – Easy – Follows the lake shoreline and offers beautiful views of the lake
Stage Coach Trail (cut off on Lyons Falls) – 0.2 mile
Shelter House Trail – 0.33 mile

Pleasant Hill Dam

Across the Covered Bridge and about a mile or two, you’ll find the Pleasant Hill Dam. It is located on the Clear Form of Mohican River and is a sight to be seen! It’s a massive dam and worth pulling over to walk across the bridge to marvel at.

Fishing at Mohican State Park

While we were hiking on the Big Lyons Falls trail, we saw about a dozen people walking with fishing poles. Fishing is good in Mohican’s streams and Pleasant Hill Lake with good catches of large mouth bass, bluegill, and white crappie.  Wolf Creek offers small mouth bass stream fishing. It is worth noting that Mohican’s Clear Fork River is 1 of 3 Ohio streams stocked with brown trout. Of course, you’ll need a valid Ohio fishing license to fish.

Canoe and Tubing the Mohican River

Mohican – Loudonville area is known as the “Canoe Capital of Ohio” with over 27 miles of flowing waters with gorgeous views of Clear Fork Gorge State Nature Preserve, Mohican State Park, and Mohican Memorial State Forest.

Photo courtesy of Mohican-Loudonville Visitors Bureau.

My husband’s family has a hilarious story of their tubing down the Mohican River when he was a kid – I can’t repeat it but let’s just say memories were made!

Mohican Fire Tower

The Mohican Fire Tower was built in 1934 and towers overhead at 80 feet. You can climb it at your own risk, up to 6 people at a time.

From the top, you can check out the 4,520 acres of Mohican-Memorial State Forest. Believe it or not, in the spring and fall, Ohio does experience frequent wildfires. There are steps you can take to help prevent wildfires if your home is built in or near the wood or even fields in Ohio. Check out these Fire Wise tips from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Plan a Trip to Mohican State Park in Loudonville, Ohio

We had a great short trip to Mohican State Park and can’t wait to go back this summer to enjoy some of the warmer activities including zip lining, canoe and tubing, bridal trails, mountain bike trails, and more.  During our trip, we stayed at Landoll’s Mohican Castle. It is one of only a few Ohio Castles and one of the only castles you can spend the night in. Plus, you can even take a tour of the castle and grounds even if you don’t stay there!

Landoll's Mohican Castle Review
Photo credit to Kyle Asperger of 301 Original.

If you are looking for fine dining in Mohican country, enjoy the Gordon Ramsay dinner menu at The Copper Mug Bar & Grille at Landoll’s Castle.


There is so much to do an see at Mohican State Park. What would your family enjoy most from the video below?!

Discover even more to do and see as well as special events in Mohican and Loudonville, Ohio on the Mohican – Loudonville Visitors Bureau website. Plan your Mohican getaway today for your family!

Mohican State Park
3116 State Route 3
Loudonville, Ohio 44842
Park Office: (419) 994-5125

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Cindy
Founder and Lead Blogger at Akron Ohio Moms
Cindy is the top Akron Blogger with her own take on awesome brands for families, where to vacation for families, a beat on local activities and family fun, a knack for getting moms to share , and a house that is always 2 weeks away from a complete remodel!
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