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Ohio State Parks

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USA Parks
Northeast Ohio Region
West Branch State Park
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5570 Esworthy Rd
Ravenna, Ohio   44266
(lat:41.1404 lon:-81.1393) map location

Phone: (330) 296-3239
Reservations: 866-644-6727
West Branch State Park's large lake with its many forks and coves is extremely popular with fishermen, boaters and swimmers. The park's meadows and woodlots provide an excellent backdrop for camping, hiking and horseback riding.
Nature of the Area
West Branch State Park in Portage County is situated on the glaciated plateau of northeastern Ohio. Although the land was uplifted as part of the Appalachian Mountain building process, the glaciers were able to override the gentle hills of the plateau. Huge ice blocks broke free from the glaciers and kettle lakes formed as the blocks melted. Eventually, these lakes filled with sediment leaving boggy wetlands with unique assemblages of plants. The West Branch area contains numerous bogs filled with buttonbush, alder, skunk cabbage and swamp white oak.

Another natural feature of the park is the stand of beech-maple forest. In pioneer times, the beech-maple belt in Ohio was very extensive and stretched across the plateau from Mansfield to Pennsylvania. These woodlands harbor a variety of plant and animal life. Woodland wildflowers such as Dutchman's breeches, bloodroot and trillium are found here. Red fox, skunk, opossum and raccoon find the park's habitat suitable. Songbirds occupy the leafy canopy of the woodlands while waterfowl and shorebirds dabble in the reservoir.
History of the Area
West Branch State Park is located on the west branch of the Mahoning River in Portage County. The river was named for the Delaware Indian word mahonink meaning "at the salt lick." In early days, a salt works was located southeast of present-day Warren along the river. The salt, which attracted a variety of wildlife, was harvested by Indians and early settlers.

At the west end of the park is a crossroads known as Campbellsport, named for Captain John Campbell who mustered militia for the War of 1812 at the site and then marched them on Cleveland. Captain Campbell originally came to the area in 1805 as a surveyor and land agent for proprietor Samuel Hinckley. Captain Campbell also served as Portage County sheriff from 1810 to 1813. He constructed what is said to be the oldest brick land-office building in Ohio (circa 1810). Prior to the flooding of the reservoir, this building was moved to a site at the Portage County Historical Society where it has been preserved and restored.

In 1965, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers completed construction of the Michael J. Kirwan Reservoir. The reservoir was developed for flood control, water supply, recreation and fish and wildlife management. West Branch State Park was formally opened in 1966.
Ohio does not have an annual pass and does not charge entrance fees to state parks.
GeneralLand, acres5,379
 Water, acres2,650
 Hiking Trail, miles41
 Picnic Shelters, #6
 Swimming Beach, feet700
 Mountain Bike Trails, miles7
 Bridle Trails, miles20
 Beach Concessionyes
 Nature Programsyes
BoatingBoat Rentalyes
 Boating LimitsUnlimited HP
 Seasonal Dock Rental284
 Launch Ramps, #4
 Fuel For Saleyes
CampingPrimitive, #14
 Electric Sites, #154
 Full Hookup Sites, #29
 Pets Permittedyes
 Group Camp, capacity50
 Horsemen Campsites, #10
WinterCross-Country Skiingyes
 Ice Boatingyes
 Ice Fishingyes
There are 103 campsites in both sunny and shaded areas. Some sites are along the lake with boat tie-ups. A group camp is available for organizations up to fifty people.
The park's 700-foot sand beach includes a showerhouse, change booth and snack bar. A boat swimming area is availablele.
The lake's 2,650 acres stretch over seven miles and offer many forks and coves with miles of shoreline. The lake is designated for unlimited horsepower. Boat rentals, gasoline and supplies are available at the marina. Four launch ramps provide access to the lake. Dock rentals are on a seasonal basis. A no-wake zone extends 300 feet from all shorelines. The entire area west of Rock Spring Road causeway is also a no-wake zone.
West Branch State Park in Ohio offers a variety of fishing options for both novice and experienced anglers. The park's 2,650-acre reservoir is known as one of the best walleye lakes in Northeast Ohio with other species including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, channel catfish, crappie and bluegill also available to catch. Fishing can be done from shore or by boat with several launch ramps provided around the lake for easy access. Ice fishing is popular during winter months when conditions allow it.

There are 103 campsites in both sunny and shaded areas. Some sites are along the lake with boat tie-ups. A group camp is available for organizations up to fifty people.
The park offers a 20-mile mountain bike trail, suitable for experienced riders due to its challenging terrain.

Beginners should exercise caution as the path features steep hills and sharp turns.

There are also paved paths available which provide safer options for less skilled cyclists or families with children.

Remember that helmets are mandatory on all trails within this natural reserve in Ohio.

Cyclists must respect other users of the trails by maintaining safe speeds and giving right-of-way when necessary.

Bike rentals may not be readily available so it's recommended you bring your own equipment.

Check weather conditions before embarking on any cycling adventure here; wet surfaces can increase difficulty levels significantly.
An extensive trail system has been developed at West Branch. More than twelve miles of hiking trails provide access to the natural world. A portion of the state's Buckeye Trail passes through the park. The park offers extensive snowmobile trails when conditions permit. Trail starts at the west boat ramp. Twenty miles of bridle trails traverse woodlands and meadows. Riders must provide their own horses. A horse camp is open by permit only.
Area Attractions
Tinker's Creek State Park and adjacent state nature preserve, located northwest of Streetsboro, offer additional recreational opportunities. Visitors may enjoy a variety of day-use activities including swimming, picnicking, fishing and hiking. During the spring and fall migration periods, the marsh provides food and shelter for thousands of waterfowl.

Nelson-Kennedy Ledges State Park, northeast of Ravenna, also offers picnicking and hiking. Winding foot trails meander around, under and between the spectacular rock formations that have become the trademarks of this state park.

Other state parks in the area include Lake Milton, Quail Hollow, Punderson and Mosquito Lake.

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
January 27 Halloween Weekend by Liz_C
park review stars; one to five Love this State Park, Clean sites Friendly Staff, Great Fun
September 8 Family Memories by Elizabeth Burton
park review stars; one to five My dad was brought to the park when it first opened with his parents. They did boating, water skiing, and swimming at the beach area along with cooking out and just relaxing on the bank. Then when my siblings and I were born, we went to West Branch and continued on the tradition. Almost every weekend in the summer we were out on the water. The park was always so clean, everyone is so friendly. Now, I am grown and married, with four children of my own and I definitely look forward to continuing on the tradition :) Elizabeth B. Cleveland, OH
January 3 great camping ,but???? by jed
park review stars; one to five if it rains the park does provide straw or anything to put on the ground to soak up the mud[ bring your own straw or anything to soak up the mud pit. camp site are not level, and way to short. but over all the camping is great. and also you have to book a site 6 months in advance or you will get a lousey site. cant wait for christmas in july.
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Area Fishing Related Businesses
West Branch Marina
8109 Cable Line Rd
Ravenna, OH
(330) 296-9209
West Branch Bait & Tackle
5353 State Route 14
Ravenna, OH
(330) 297-9901
TMF Sports Shop Inc
4081 Sandy Lake Rd
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(330) 296-2614
North Coast Bait & Tackle
16963 Mahoning Ave
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(330) 654-2516
Area Cabins and Lodges
Cottage Vacation Rentals
330 N Prospect St
Ravenna, OH
(330) 525-5563
Nearby Hotels

5708 Esworthy Road, Ravenna, Ohio 44266-9659

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Ohio State Parks