Ohio’s Jefferson Lake State Park – Scenic, Quiet and out of the Way

If you’d like to get away and enjoy spending some time at a scenic, quiet, and out-of-the-way campground in the American state of Ohio, you should consider taking a trip to Jefferson Lake State Park, which is located near the town of Richmond. The 945-acre park is located in hickory and oak wooded hills and is usually open all year round.

The park has five electric campsites and 92 non-electric ones. Each site comes with a picnic table and there are hot showers in the beach area. You’re welcome to take your pets along and the sites are available on a first come, first served basis.

Jefferson Lake State ParkYou can also enjoy boating on the 17-acre Jefferson Lake and use the site’s launch ramp. The sandy beach is about 200 feet long and is ideal for swimming if you’d like to cool off. There are also five scenic areas around the lake that are available for picnickers as well as three shelter houses.

The lake is also ideal for fishing, especially when it comes to catfish, largemouth bass, sunfish, and bluegill. There’s a two-mile hiking trail, a three-mile horse trail and six bridle trails which are made for biking and hiking.

You’re allowed to hunt in the park’s designated areas and during the winter you’ll be able to ice skate, cross country ski, and ice fish. During the warmer weather you can enjoy basketball and volleyball courts along with horseshoe pits.

There are also some interesting local sites to visit in the nearby area. These include Fernwood State Forest, Yellow Creek State Forest, McCook House State Memorial, Morgan Raiders marker, the Petersburg Algonquin Steam Flour Mill, and New Rumley, which is General George Armstrong Custer’s place of birth.

The historic Jefferson County area itself is quite attractive as the sandstone hills belong to the Appalachian Highlands, which lie in the southeastern region of the state of Ohio. The valleys and hills are covered in forests of hickory and oak trees along with maple, beech, tulip, elms, walnut, and ash trees. The forests also showcase a variety of wildflowers including bloodroot, hepatica, and wild geranium. The wildlife consists of an assortment of birds, ruffed grouse, and wild turkeys.

The land for Jefferson Lake State Park was acquired in 1928. The dam was erected back in 1934 and Lake Jefferson was filled in during 1946. The area was then turned over to the state’s Division of Parks and Recreation in 1950.