Cross Country Skiing in Northeast Ohio

The Alternative to Downhill

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In many ways, the rolling terrain of Northeast Ohio is better suited to Nordic skiing than to downhill. Cross country skiing doesn't require hills and can be enjoyed on almost any snow-covered location. It's also easy to learn and offers an entire body aerobic workout.

Many local parks embrace the sport and offer designated and groomed Nordic ski trails. Among these are:

Cleveland Metroparks:

  • Bedford Reservation - Bedford, Bedford Hts., Oakwood, Valley View, and Walton Hills; Trails and the Shawnee Hills Golf Course are open for skiing.
  • Brecksville Reservation - Brecksville; offers 10 trails which traverse seven distinct gorges.
  • Euclid Reservation - Euclid, South Euclid, and Richmond Hts.
  • Garfield Park Reservation - Garfield Hts.; several short trails
  • Hinckley Reservation - Hinckley Township; many scenic trails, including ones through the moss and fern-covered ledges.
  • Mill Stream Run Reservation - Berea, Middleberg Hts., North Royalton, and Strongsville; trails through the forest, woodland meadows, and remains of Native American settlements.
  • North Chagrin Reservation - Mayfield Village, Willoughby Hills, and Gates Mills; more than a dozen trails, including the Castle Valley Trail which passes Squires Castle.
  • Ohio and Erie Canal - Cuyahoga Hts. and Valley View; offers a handful of short trails around the canal.
  • Rocky River Reservation - Berea, Brookpark, Cleveland, Fairview Park, Lakewood, North Olmsted, Olmsted Township, and Rocky River; trails through the deep floodplain forests and around the creeks and shale cliffs. Good for wildlife viewing.
  • South Chagrin Reservation - Bentleyville, Solon, and Moreland Hills; a variety of meadow and wooded trails, including one past Henry Church's 1885 rock carvings.
  • Cascade Valley Metro Park - Chuckery Area, 837 Cuyahoga St., Akron; trails along the Cuyhoga River in the heart of Akron
  • Firestone Metro Park - Warner Road Area, 200 E. Warner Rd., Akron; this 255-acre park is a great place to view wildlife.
  • Furnace Run Metro Park - Brushwood Area, 4955 Townsend Rd., Richfield; three miles of Nordic ski trails.
  • Goodyear Heights Metro Park - Alder Trail, 550 Frazier Ave, Akron; known for its thousands of Scotch Pines, planted during the depression era.
  • Munroe Falls Metro Park - 521 S. River Rd., Munroe Falls; 222 acres of parkland and trails.
  • Silver Creek Metro Park - Pheasant Run and Chippewa trails, 5000 Hametown Rd., Norton; this 624 acre park is a former dairy farm and home to abundant wildlife and one of the largest red oaks in Summit County.
Lake Metroparks
  • Chapin Forest Reservation - 10090 Chillicothe Rd. (route 306), Kirtland; 5.3 miles of ski trails; known for rock formations; Pine Lodge Ski Center offers rentals and lessons from November 15 to March 15, weather permitting.
  • Girdled Road Reservation - 12898 Girdled Rd. and 12899 Radcliffe Rd., Concord Township; five miles of groomed trails.
Malabar Farms State Park - just outside of Mansfield - Offers 10 miles of trails, a ski rental shop, ski workshops, and tours of the farm.
(Last updated 11-26-08)
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