LAKE LORAMIE STATE PARK
One of the original canal feeder lakes, Lake Loramie State Park offers visitors a quiet retreat in rural Ohio. Swim from the sandy beach, hike along the old canal towpath, stay a night in a shaded campsite or boat the lazy waters of Lake Loramie.
Although difficult to imagine, Ohio at one time had more than two-thirds of its surface covered by massive sheets of ice as much as a mile thick in places. At least three great ice sheets invaded Ohio's boundaries in the geologic past. The last one retreated 12,000 years ago. These ice advances directly impacted the natural features now evident at Lake Loramie State Park. Materials deposited by the glaciers included clay, sand, gravel and boulders of various sizes.
In the western half of Ohio where the land is generally level, these deposits resulted in some of the world's richest soils. A great forest emerged after the glacial era, covering 95% of the state. In the vicinity of Lake Loramie, the vegetation consisted of mainly beech forests which thrived in the moist, fertile soils of the region. Today, little can be seen of that mighty forest because development of the land for agriculture and other purposes has drastically altered the original vegetation. Small woodlots, grass plains, prairie and farmland are typical of the area today. The park's campground supports a colony of the unique bald cypress tree as well as a plantation of sweet gum dating back to the early 1950s. Waterfowl, including Canada geese, frequent the park along with various songbirds and small mammals. Wildflowers flourish in the forests and fields. On the lake, waterlily, cattail and a beautiful display of American lotus enhance the view. A trail leading to Blackberry Island will treat visitors to glimpses of nesting red-headed woodpeckers and barred owls. The park's meadows support a large population of eastern bluebirds.
Preceding the French and Indian War of 1754-1763, the Miami village called Pickawillany became prominent in this area. Over 400 Indian families lived here and it became the principal headquarters of the Miami Confederacy before being destroyed by the French in 1752 because the Miami Indians sided with the British.
Lake Loramie derived its name from the famous French-Canadian trader, Peter Loramie, who in 1769 established a trading post at the mouth of Loramie Creek near the west end of what is now Loramie Reservoir. Loramie first came to the area as a Jesuit priest to minister to the Wyandot and Shawnee Indians.
Loramie's store became the center of Indian mischief against the settlers, and Loramie became a bitter enemy of the Americans. General George Rogers Clark destroyed the post and a nearby Indian village in 1782 during an expedition in the Miami valley. Loramie emigrated west with a band of Shawnee shortly afterwards. In 1794, General "Mad" Anthony Wayne built a fort on the former trading post site.
Lake Loramie was originally constructed in 1824-25 as a storage reservoir to supply water for the Miami-Erie Canal system. A short feeder canal connected Lake Loramie with the main canal which furnished transportation from the Ohio River at Cincinnati north to Lake Erie. The canal system reached its peak of economic importance in the mid-1800s. Eventually, the advent of the railroads and destruction caused by the floods of 1913 forced the abandonment of the canals in that year.
Since that time, Lake Loramie and other canal lands became recognized for their potential to serve increasing outdoor recreational needs. In 1949, Lake Loramie became the possession of the newly created Division of Parks and Recreation of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and has been maintained as a state park since.
Ohio does not have an annual pass and does not charge entrance fees to state parks.
Hiking Trail, miles8
Picnic Shelters, #3
Swimming Beach, feet600
Boating LimitsUnlimited HP
Seasonal Dock Rental91
Launch Ramps, #6
Electric Sites, #160
Rent-A-Camp Sites, #4
Group Camp, capacity110
Youth Group Camp, capacity115
Camping enthusiasts can choose from either electric or non-electric campsites, many of which are shaded waterfront sites. The campground features showers, flush toilets and a dump station. Several sites are equipped with boat tie-ups. There are three group camp areas available by reservation to organized groups. Three Rent-A-Camp sites consisting of a tent, dining shelter, cookstove and other equipment can be rented during summer months by reservation only.