When you think of sports, what do you envision? Hiking, biking, kayaking and canoeing, golfing, fishing, bowling, roller skating, shooting . . . but there are also sports to watch: baseball, for one. Look below for many of the sports activities in the area. And if you want a cool summer splash, there’s a 159 foot twisting slide at the pool near Yoctangee Park which is open during the summer and operated by the City of Chillicothe.
State Parks and Forests
- Great Seal State Park is the closest to the Tecumseh drama and has excellent hiking trails with a variety of terrain.
- Scioto Trail State Park and Forest is the closest to Wren Eagle Retreat and offers mile upon mile of hiking trails and mountain bike trails, including the Scioto Trail Section of the Buckeye and North Country Trails, and two small fishing lakes. NOTE: You will need a fishing license and must provide your own mountain bikes.
- Ross Lake is an excellent place to fish, as is the Scioto River.
Bowling, Roller Skating, and other indoor sports and games:
- Shawnee Lanes: 1680 N. Bridge St., Chillicothe, OH 740-773-3300
- Cavalier Roller Skating Rink:14978 Pleasant Valley Rd., Chillicothe OH 740-775-9033
- Arcade and indoor games: Triple Crown Family Fun Center: 1 Nancy Wilson Way (behind the Hampton Inn), Chillicothe, OH 740-775-2564
- Auto racing: Atomic Speedway 2535 Blain Highway, Waverly, OH 45690 740-703-9749
Canoeing and Kayaking
- Great fun on Paint Creek! Three companies rent canoes and kayaks or bring your own. You can also use your own boat on Lake White to the south.
- Waters Edge Canoe Livery 10807 Ohio 772, Chillicothe, OH 740-779-3339
- Shawnee Valley Kayak Rental 307 Alum Cliff Rd., Chillicothe OH 740-701-8765
- Salt Creek Kayak Adventures 1062 Main St, Richmond Dale, OH 45673 740-785-7258 (Note: This one rents on Salt Creek a little further away, in Richmond Dale.
A Prospect League wood bat baseball team made up of college and university top performers. Much more fun to watch than professional baseball. Great entertainment for the entire family. There’s no spectator sport more fun than watching the Paints play!
- The Paint Creek Recreational Trail is a paved bicycle trail that runs along the floodwall in Chillicothe, by the Hopewell Culture National Historic Park, to the small town of Frankfort and then on to Washington Courthouse. It is approximately 23 miles long. A very nice trail to ride during temperate weather, but it can be very hot on steamy summer days. Although the trail begins on the east side of Chillicothe, that area is not very safe and I would advise starting at a small park on the other side of town. Or even drive your car to the Hopewell Culture National Historic Park and start there.
- If you are an avid cyclist, there is a 25, 50, and 100 mile ride in April called The BIKE FIFTY.
- I also have turn-by-turn directions for a 50-mile road route around Waverly. You may download it here.
An easy and beautiful hike to the rocky gorge overlooking Paint Creek this park is run by the Ross County Park District. Five miles of trails let you explore cliffs, an old farmstead, or look for tiny saw whet owls. Click here for a list of scheduled events or visit their Facebook page.
Not nearly as exciting as Buzzards Roost, Metahqua Nature Preserve is a flat 1.5 mile hike with a looping end that might appeal to some of you. Buzzards Roost remains my favorite, both for total length of trails (about 5 miles) and for wonderful views, one being down the Paint Creek valley.