When one thinks of our National Parks, generally their mind will go to Yellowstone, or The Grand Canyon. Rarely though, would someone think of Cuyahoga Valley in Ohio. In fact, I had no idea it existed. I was making a pitstop in Cleveland, and I happened to find this park on Google. I wondered what it could really be like. Most of the Ohio that I had been driving through was quite flat and not too interesting. Excited by the find, I rushed off to discover this wonderland.
Located a short 40 min drive outside of Cleveland, the park encompasses the valley of the nearby Cuyahoga River. At one time, with the river providing the life force for the surrounding area, the entire area flourished. Crops and animals were plentiful but slowly, industrialization took over the area leading to the creation of the national park. Now, the area is protected, providing miles of trails to bike and explore.
Having been a significant farming area in the past, in 1999, the government started rehabbing old farms and leasing them to farmers that are willing to maintain the strict requirements to operate inside the protected land. Called the Countryside Initiative, this is a great program that allows us to truly use the land to its fullest extent.
This entry wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t suggest that you make your way to Brandywine Falls while you are in the park. Separated a little from the main Visitors Center, but with a Parking lot of its own if the long hike isn’t your cup of tea, this waterfall offers breathtaking views of the river falling down a cliff. It is definitely a must stop.
Closest Supercharger: Macedonia OH 5.6 mi
8210 Macedonia Commons Blvd, Macedonia, OH 44056
Cuyahoga National Park