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Lake Hope

A natural paradise, Lake Hope State Park lies entirely within the 18,200-acre Zaleski State Forest in the valley of Big Sandy Run. It is a rugged, heavily forested region traversed by steep gorges and narrow ridges. Abandoned mines, ancient mounds and beautiful scenery provide interest and pleasure for hikers, photographers, nature lovers and historians alike at one of Ohio's most historic and scenic state parks.

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Dogwood Tree in Bloom -

Lake Hope State Park is truly a nature lover's dream. In the forest-draped hills, the observant visitor can discover the abundant natural resources of this wild and scenic park.

Although most of the forest was cut to fuel the iron smelting industry that once flourished here, the land has recovered and supports a magnificent, second-growth forest. Oak and hickory are the dominant trees while the woodland floor harbors a fascinating assemblage of shrubs and wildflowers. The yellow lady's slipper ,one of the rarest and most showy orchids, blooms in secluded hollows. Other spring wildflowers such as blue-eyed mary, bloodroot and wild geranium can be found in abundance.

Deer and wild turkeys are often seen in a number of park locations. Of the many animals inhabiting the park, none is as popular as the beaver. As nature's dam builders, the beavers are found in numbers and can be observed near the quiet inlets of the lake.

A fine swimming beach is located near the dam. Facilities include a bathhouse with restrooms, showers and change booths and a concession building where food and beverages can be purchased.

Fifteen miles of hiking trails traverse the lake and scenic woodlands of the Lake Hope area and offer opportunities for photography and nature study. In the adjacent state forest, a 21-mile backpack trail with primitive campsites is available. Backpackers must register upon arrival. Thirty-three miles of bridle trail are available for riders with their own mounts in the state forest.

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Lotus Lilly in July -

The Hope Furnace was built here over 100 years ago to process the iron ore extracted from the region's sandstone bedrock. The iron resulting from the ore smelting process was used to produce many different items, including ammunition and cannon for the Union Army during the Civil War. Hundreds of men labored cutting timber, working the furnace and driving teams of mules hauling iron ore to the furnace. Charcoal fires were tended 24 hours a day; so much wood was required for this process that the surrounding hillsides were almost completely stripped of their timber. At the height of the Hope Furnace's production, Ohio was one of the nation's leading producers of iron. As time passed, iron ore was discovered farther west and Ohio's reputation as a major iron producer waned.

© Bud Schrader Photography
Lilies on the Lake - Lake Logan water lilies.

Location Map
Lake Hope Park Map
Lake Hope Campground Map
Calendar of Events
Bluebird Box Monitoring - Lake Hope
Wed Jul 18

3:00 pm.

Help the naturalist check for cavity nesters around the Nature Center.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Wildlife,
Stand Up Paddleboard - Lake Hope
Thu Jul 19

9:00 - 11:00 am

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Stand Up Paddleboard - Lake Hope
Fri Jul 20

10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Moth Hours - Lake Hope
Sat Jul 21

10:00 pm - 1:00 am

Learn the importance of these late-night fliers then investigate what moths live at Lake Hope at a couple of light traps near the nature center. Bring a flashlight

and camera.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Archery - Lake Hope
Sat Jul 21

5:30 - 7:30 pm.

Learn how to shoot a bow and arrows. All equipment will be

provided. Meet the naturalist below the Lake Hope dam. Equipment provided.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Kayak - Lake Hope
Thu Jul 26

5:30 - 7:30 pm

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Full Moon Hike - Lake Hope
Thu Jul 26

8:30 pm

Enjoy a 3-mile hike illuminated by the moon. Meet at the shelter house just past the beach house.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Archery - Lake Hope
Sat Jul 28

9:00 - 11:00 am.

Learn how to shoot a bow and arrows. All equipment will be

provided. Meet the naturalist below the Lake Hope dam. Equipment provided.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Archery - Lake Hope
Sat Aug 4

5:00 pm.

Learn how to shoot a bow. All equipment will be provided. Meet the naturalist at the archery range past the beach house.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Nature on Display - Lake Hope
Sun Aug 5

10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Check out the naturalists collection of things found in the park. Test yourself by identifying them all. At the dining lodge.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Bluebird Box Monitoring - Lake Hope
Wed Aug 8

3:00 pm.

Help the naturalist check for cavity nesters around the Nature Center.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Wildlife,
Dog Day of Summer - Lake Hope
Wed Aug 8

10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Come celebrate your canine companion with activities on the beach. Local vendors and demonstrations, even adoptable dogs will be available. Off leash is permitted in the beach area only. Pets must be up-to-date on all vaccinations and friendly with people and other dogs.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Wildlife,
Stand Up Paddleboard - Lake Hope
Fri Aug 10

5:00 pm

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Stand Up Paddleboard - Lake Hope
Sat Aug 11

9:00 am

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Pups on SUPS - Lake Hope
Sun Aug 12

12:00 - 2:00 pm

Free. Equipment provided. Ages 12+. Bring water and prepare to get wet. Meet at the Boat Ramp on OH-278. Introductory Courses. first come first served. Meant to get you familiar with the parts, safety concerns, and paddling techniques of a kayak or SUP.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Archery - Lake Hope
Fri Aug 31

5:00 pm.

Learn how to shoot a bow. All equipment will be provided. Meet the naturalist at the archery range past the beach house.

Nature Center Hours:

Thursday 1-4pm

Saturdays 1-4pm

Sundays 1-4pm

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Lake Hope State Park, Phone: 740-596-3030

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest,
Photo Gallery (click on an image to enlarge)
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