Looking for an outdoor adventure near Cincinnati, Ohio? Check out East Fork State Park for mountain biking and hiking trails, a lake, camping and more!
It was time for a break.
The kind that involves plenty of fresh air, hiking and biking opportunities galore, and, oh yes, is close enough for a quick weekend getaway.
But sometimes, circumstances dictate that you make the most of the places in your own neck of the woods.
The fun part about this is that we get to discover places that we otherwise might have overlooked!
Looking for more parks to explore around Cincinnati? Go skiing at Perfect North, or check out Big Bone Lick State Historic Site, England-Idlewild Park or Kincaid Lake State Park! A little further east is Shawnee State Park.
Our latest getaway took us to one of Ohio’s largest state parks.
Exploring East Fork State Park
East Fork State Park is located in southwestern Ohio.
It’s just about 25 miles from Cincinnati, so it would be easy to combine it with some other city-type attractions if you like.
The park itself is 4,870 acres! That includes a large lake, a campground, and a number of trails for hiking, horseback riding, and biking.
Trails at East Fork State Park
East Fork’s mountain biking and hiking trails are located conveniently near the campground.
We did two mountain biking loops: the Hopewell and Adena Loop.
The trails were well-maintained and just challenging enough to be really fun!
Interested in mountain biking but not sure how to get started? Check out this guide to mountain biking gear for beginners!
The Adena Loop is around 3 miles long.
The Hopewell trail, also called the Beginner Loop, is around 2.5 miles.
Of course, we took the time to stop and enjoy the small things along the way!
Such as a cute little turtle, some neat-looking mushrooms growing alongside a tree, or a pond with some beautiful wildflowers at its edge.
East Fork Lake
East Fork Lake is a beautiful place to enjoy water sports on the lake. There are several boat ramps, and the lake is stocked for fishing.
The only thing you’ll need to double-check at the lake is a little problem called algae bloom!
When we stayed there (July 2021), the lake was under an algae bloom advisory.
A sign was posted urging us to avoid contact with the water because of the high toxin levels present.
So, of course, we opted not to get in the water.
The views were still lovely, though!
East Fork Campground
The East Fork Campground is a bit more than just a place to set up a tent!
Within the campground you’ll find a miniature golf course, playgrounds, a nature center, and plenty of space to ride a bike around.
Each campsite had a picnic table and a campfire ring. We bought firewood at the park store.
The camp spots weren’t massive, but ours was plenty big enough even for our oversized tent.
Our camp spot in the C loop had lots of shade (a huge plus in the middle of summer!) and access to electricity.
There are 376 electric sites, and 23 full-hookup ones.
You can reserve your preferred spot online before you go!
The A loop even had some equestrian camping spots!
Each campground loop had a shower and bathroom.
Even though the campground was busy the weekend we visited, the bathrooms were clean!
Our weekend getaway at East Fork State Park gave us a new place to explore, and was just the break we needed!