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Ohio
25

Ohio State Parks

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USA Parks
Ohio
Southeast Ohio Region
Muskingum River Parkway
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Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Kids having fun © Eric Hoffman
Muskingum River Parkway © Eric Hoffman
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 4 Beverly, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 3 Lowell,OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 5, Luke Chute, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
Muskingum River Parkway Lock 2 Devon, OH © Lonnie Williams
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MUSKINGUM RIVER PARKWAY
MUSKINGUM RIVER PARKWAY
1390 Ellis Dam Rd
Zanesville, Ohio   43701
(lat:39.6285 lon:-81.8498) map location

Phone: 740-767-3570
Reservations: 866-644-6727
The Muskingum River Parkway and its 160-year-old navigation system were designated a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Civil Engineers in July 2001. Along with such majestic institutions as Hoover Dam, The Empire State Building and the Golden Gate Bridge, the Muskingum River's 10 hand-operated locks are now recognized as one of America's great engineering accomplishments.

In its day, the system of locks and dams that extends 112 miles through southeastern Ohio, helped open the state and the entire Midwest to trade and development. Today, it serves the needs of more than 7,000 recreational boaters each year who come to fish, picnic and play in the scenic Muskingum Valley.
Parkway Map (pdf)
Nature of the Area
The Muskingum River is formed by the confluence of the Walhonding and Tuscarawas rivers in Coshocton, Ohio. From there, it flows south through Zanesville where it is joined by the Licking River until it eventually drains into the Ohio River at Marietta. This mighty river travels 112 miles in all, traversing the scenic hill country.

The rich floodplains of the Muskingum provide suitable conditions for walnut, elm, cottonwood and sycamore. Dense paw-paw thickets line the banks of the river. A rich diversity of bird life and mammals share the wooded shores. The Muskingum provides a remarkable fishery including catches of huge shovelhead catfish. The mighty Ohio muskellunge was once abundant in the Muskingum and its tributaries, but its population has declined in recent years. A number of rare fish share the waters such as sanddarters, northern madtoms, mooneyes and channel darters. The Muskingum and its tributaries have long supported large and diverse populations of freshwater mussels. Dissolved limestone in the river is used by the mussels in constructing their shells. The Muskingum River system supports the last remaining Ohio populations of mussels such as monkeyface shell, fan shell, Ohio pigtoe and the butterfly shell.
History of the Area
The Muskingum River, because of its size and location, has played an important role in Ohio's history. It is the largest river lying solely within Ohio, draining an area equal to one-fifth of the entire state.

Missionaries settled along the headwaters of this picturesque river in 1761. The first permanent settlement in Ohio was established in 1788 at Marietta. One of the city's founders, General Rufus Putnam, recognized the economic potential of the Muskingum River for transporting raw materials to eastern markets and brought in New England shipbuilders. In 1824, steam-powered paddle wheelers joined the flatboat and keelboat traders, generating public support for river navigation.

West Point graduate Major Samuel Curtis designed a system of 10 dams and 11 locks to connect the Muskingum River to the Ohio and Erie Canal at Dresden. Opened in 1841, the system provided navigable waterways from Marietta to Lake Erie.
Passes
Ohio does not have an annual pass and does not charge entrance fees to state parks.
FACILITIES AND ACTIVITIES OVERVIEW
GeneralLand, acres120
 Water, acres-13
Day-UseFishingyes
 Hiking Trail, miles1
 Picnickingyes
 Nature Programsyes
BoatingBoating LimitsUnlimited HP
 Launch Rampsyes
CampingPrimitive, #28
 Pets Permittedyes
Camping
A camping area is provided at Lock 11. There are 20 campsites off State Route 60 and County Road 49 in Muskingum County. Water, picnic tables, fire rings and latrines are provided. Pets are permitted in the camping area at Ellis. There are eight boaters-only, primitive campsites at Lock #5, Luke Chute.
Swimming
The Muskingum River Parkway in Ohio offers various swimming options for visitors. The parkway features several public access points along the river where people can swim and enjoy the water. Some popular swimming spots along the Muskingum River Parkway include the boat ramps and picnic areas at the Dillon State Park, the Bryan's Place Park in Philo, and the lock and dam areas such as Lock 9 and Lock 10. These locations provide opportunities for swimming, as well as other water activities such as fishing and boating. Visitors can also explore the scenic beauty of the river while swimming and have a memorable experience in the Muskingum River Parkway.
Boating
It is suggested that prior to departing for a boat trip on the Muskingum River, boaters contact the park office to check on river and lock conditions. Boats with unlimited horsepower motors, house boats, pontoon boats, canoes and rowboats travel the river. Public launch ramps are provided at Locks 4, 5, 6 and 11. Private ramps are located near Locks 2, 7 and 10.

The Muskingum River is navigable from Dresden to Marietta. However, the river channel from Dresden to Ellis is unmarked and difficult to follow. Information on navigation charts can be obtained at the parkway office.

Some of the tributaries which empty into the Muskingum River are also navigable for short distances and provide excellent fishing. The Licking River which joins the Muskingum River in Zanesville, is navigable only by canoe or rowboat.
Fishing
All three species of black bass (largemouth, smallmouth and spotted), saugeye and various species of catfish are taken from the river. Bass are also found in several tributaries. Fishing is permitted from boats and at each of the lock sites; however, fishing is prohibited from the lock walls. A valid Ohio fishing license is required.



Picnicking
Picnic tables, grills, latrines, and drinking water are available at all locks except Lock 9 at Philo in Muskingum County. Visitors are requested to build fires only in the grills provided and to dispose of all litter properly.
Trails
1. Lock 2 Trail: A short, yet challenging trail that takes you through dense forests and along the river's edge with stunning views of historic lock structures.

2. Luke Chute Conservation Area Trails: Offers a variety of trails ranging from easy to moderate difficulty levels; features include lush greenery, diverse wildlife sightings, and breathtaking vistas overlooking the Muskingum River.

3. Beverly Ohio Rail-Trail: An exhilarating hike on an old railway line offering panoramic views over rolling hillsides dotted with quaint farmhouses and barns in rural Ohio countryside settings.

4. Stockport Mill Inn & Restaurant Loop Trail: This moderately difficult loop offers hikers scenic overlooks at every turn - including waterfalls cascading down rocky cliffs into serene pools below - as well as access to historical sites like the restored mill itself.

5. Big Bottom Park Pathway: Takes visitors deep into untouched wilderness areas where they can experience solitude amidst towering trees while listening for bird calls echoing off ancient rock formations nearby.

6. Devola Multi-use Pathway: Ideal for both hiking enthusiasts or casual walkers looking forward to enjoying picturesque landscapes featuring wildflowers blooming alongside meandering streams under clear blue skies above them during springtime hikes here.

7. Rainbow Hills Vineyards Nature Walk: Provides unique opportunities not only explore local flora fauna but also sample some finest wines produced within region after completing their journey across this relatively flat terrain covered by vineyard rows stretching out towards horizon beyond sight.

8. Constitution Wildlife Habitat Hiking Route: Known its rich biodiversity, it allows adventurers encounter various species animals birds thriving natural habitats preserved meticulously throughout years conservation efforts undertaken park authorities together community members living around area.

9. The Valley Gem Sternwheeler Riverside Trek is perfect those who love history maritime heritage combined thrill exploring rugged terrains leading up steep bluffs providing spectacular aerial perspectives entire valley spread beneath feet once reach summit these high points located along route.

10. The Muskingum River Parkway State Park Trail: A long, winding trail that takes you through the heart of the parkway with stunning views over pristine waters and lush greenery; perfect for those seeking a challenging hike amidst nature's splendor.

11. Lock 10 & Dam Walk: This easy walk offers an up-close view of historic lock structures while providing opportunities to spot local wildlife such as deer, foxes or even bald eagles soaring above in search of their next meal.

12. Blue Rock Forest Hiking Path: Known its rugged beauty, this path winds around towering rock formations covered moss lichen before leading hikers towards hidden caves waterfalls waiting be discovered by adventurous souls daring enough venture off beaten track into wilderness beyond known trails within park boundaries.

13. The Stockport Historic District Walking Tour is not only about hiking but also learning history culture region visiting various landmarks buildings dating back centuries ago still standing proudly today despite passage time changes brought upon them due course years gone past since they were first built during early settlement days here.

Area Attractions
Blue Rock State Park and State Forest, east off State Route 60 on Culter Lake Road (CR 45), is between Philo and Rokeby. Camping, fishing, hiking, swimming, boating and picnicking are available. Approximately six miles above the mouth of the Licking is Dillon State Park, off State Route 146. Campsites, cabins, fishing, hiking, boating, swimming and picnicking are available.

The Wilds, located 17 miles southeast of Zanesville, contains a 9,154-acre wild animal preserve open to the public. Entrance fee required, hours vary by season. For details call (740) 638-5030.

For more information about the Muskingum River, contact Zanesville/Muskingum Visitors Bureau at 1-800-743-2303, the Marietta Tourist Bureau at 1-800-228-2577 or the Ohio Division of Travel and Tourism at 1-800-BUCKEYE.


Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
August 14 Dredging lock entrance
park review stars; one to five Channel markers below stockport lock were way down river,no idea as to where channel was, broke chunks out of my scag when hit rock, entrance to next lock down was 1 1/2 feet deep, got hung up and sucked mud into sea water pump, tore it up. Parkway needs to do a better job keeping parkway usable
November 9 Great Boating ! ! by Mitch
park review stars; one to five Boated from North of Zanesville to McConnalsville and back in a day. Locks are great. Everybody must see them operate.
September 3 Nice river and locks by Tim
park review stars; one to five We canoed and kayaked the whole river in four and a half days. Camped at the locks. Ellis is nice campground but Luke Chute is an excellent camp. All the lock tenders were helpful and nice.
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Area Accommodations (over 20 miles away)
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Hidden Cave Cabin - Rockbridge, OH
Cottages and Cabins
Hidden Cave Cabin is an authentic log cabin with 2 bedrooms in a private wooded setting. It is located on one of the most scenic drives in Hocking Hills and just 3.6 miles to Rock House and less than 10 miles to Conkle's Hollow and Old Man's Cave.
40.2 miles from park*
businesss listing main photo
Cottages and Cabins
Trickle Creek offers luxury cabins in Hocking Hills. The cabins are situated on nearly 236 acres of secluded cabin rentals in the deep wooded ravines in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Hocking County, Ohio.
36 miles from park*
Nearby Hotels
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Directions
1. Starting from I-70, take Exit 142 for OH-93 South toward Adamsville/Zanesville.
2. Merge onto OH-93 South and continue for approximately 6 miles.
3. Take a slight left onto OH-666 South/East Adamsville Road and continue for another 2.5 miles.
4. Turn right onto OH-146 West/Coopermill Road. Follow this road for about 10 miles.
5. You will reach Zanesville and continue onto OH-60 South/Underwood Street.
6. Stay on OH-60 South for approximately 9 miles.
7. Merge onto I-70 East and continue for about 3 miles.
8. Take Exit 156 for OH-83 South toward Frazeysburg.
9. Merge onto OH-83 South and follow it for approximately 5.5 miles.
10. Take a slight right to stay on OH-83 South/Frazeysburg Road.
11. Continue on OH-83 South for about 14 miles until you reach the entrance to the Muskingum River Parkway.

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Ohio
25

Ohio State Parks

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