The Best Things To Do At Alum Creek State Park – Columbus Navigator

The Best Things To Do At Alum Creek State Park  Columbus Navigator


No matter what time of year it is, a visit to Alum Creek State Park is always worth it.

The Alum Creek area isn’t just a beautiful spot. It’s also historically significant. From the people of the Adena culture, who lived in the area over 2,000 years ago to the Delaware Indians who lived in several villages nearby, to frontier settlers in the 17th century, Alum Creek has been the site of human development for as long as humans have lived in Ohio.

Before and during the Civil War, The Sycamore Trail was a common path for enslaved people fleeing slavery in the south on their way to freedom in Canada.

The natural history of the park is just as intriguing. The cliffs found throughout the park were carved out as Alum Creek and other streams cut through the bedrock. When the glaciers that covered the region retreated nearly 12,000 years ago, the rich soil gave birth to a massive, beech-maple forest. Although that ancient forest is long gone, a second-growth forest is preserved in the park, and it’s home to some incredible specimens.

From wildflowers to wildlife, there’s so much to see while you’re exploring Alum Creek State Park.

Hiking & Biking Trails

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The park offers a variety of trails for walking, hiking, mountain biking, and even horseback riding. From the smallest kiddos who will enjoy exploring the Storybook Trail to the most avid hikers who can take the moderate Rocks to Roots Trail, you could spend your whole visit exploring this beautiful park on foot, bike, or horse. To learn more about the trails, click here.

Birding

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Birds call the area home all year long, but the best time to visit for birding specifically is Spring-Fall. In the spring, you might catch a glimpse of Bald Eagles or migrating flocks. In The summer, you can see Cliff Swallows, Ospreys, Cerulean Warblers, and even Common Loons. In the fall, you can see migrant waterfowl, Buff-breasted Sandpipers, American Avocet, and more. To learn more, please click here.

Paddling

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If you have your own canoes, kayaks, or paddle boards, there are plenty of places to put in the water at Alum Creek. If you need to rent a watercraft, you’re in luck. The Alum Creek Marina offers hourly and daily rates, so once you decide which sort of paddling you’re doing and how long you want to do it, all you have to do is make your reservation. You can learn more about rentals by visiting the Alum Creek Marina website.

Swimming

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The beach at Alum Creek State Park is one of the best around. It’s massive, sandy, and offers plenty of space to spread out and enjoy an afternoon in the sun. Facilities at the beach include a changing area, outdoor showers, restrooms, beach vendors, and sand volleyball courts. This is a swim at your own risk beach and it’s always important to check Water Quality advisories before you head out.

Boating

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In addition to non-motorized boats, you can also spend the day cruising the reservoir with a little more speed. There are four launch ramps that offer public access to the lake and one additional ramp that is available to campers only. If you don’t have your own boat, don’t worry! Rentals are available from the Marina and include wave-runners, ski boats, pontoon boats, and fishing boats.

Camping

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Alum Creek State Park Campground offers both Full Hookup and Electric sites. All of the sites are pet-friendly and there are both sunny and shady areas. If you want a one-of-a-kind to stay, book a waterfront site so you can enjoy sunrise and sunset over the water. Learn more about the campground or book your stay right here.

Disc Golf

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Near the New Galena Boat Ramp, you’ll find the 18-hole Disc Golf Course. You can rent equipment if you don’t have your own frisbees but the course itself is free to play.

Dog Park

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Dogs may not be able to swim at the beach, but that doesn’t mean there’s not a spot for them to enjoy. Friends of Alum Creek Dog Park is a 4-acre site along the lake near the marina. There’s a fenced area with water access for dogs only and two other fenced spaces for large and small dogs. You can visit the dog park website here.

Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights

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You’ll find one of the best Christmas lights displays in Central Ohio at the Alum Creek State Park Campgrounds. Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights starts annually in mid-November and runs through the new year. This drive-thru light display is a truly dazzling experience for the whole family. Plan your visit at butchbandosfantasyoflights.com.

Frequenly Asked Questions

Where is Alum Creek State Park?
Alum Creek State Park is located at 3615 S Old State Road, Delaware, OH 43015.

Is the park open year round?
Yes! The park is open from sunrise to sunset daily.

Can dogs swim at Alum Creek?
They sure can, but only in the specific dog park area. Dogs are not permitted to swim at the main beach.

Can you rent boats at Alum Creek?
You sure can. The Alum Creek Marina has all of your boat rental needs covered.

For more information about Alum Creek State Park, please visit the Ohio Department of Natural Resources website here.