Join Metro Parks for 13 Winter Hikes

Melissa Kossler Dutton
Last year’s Winter Hike at Blacklick Woods Metro Park drew about 1,000 people despite single-digit temperatures.

Metro Parks is again encouraging families to enjoy the outdoors in the off-season.

For the 46th year, the park system will sponsor a free Winter Hikes series. This year’s events, which span two months, kick off Jan. 5 at Blacklick Woods Metro Park and then travel to 12 other sites.

The hikes, which vary in length, are designed to appeal to hikers all ages. Participants often see local wildlife, according to park staff. The events also are intended to promote community, as participants enjoy a cup of soup or hot cocoa afterward. Visitors who participate in seven of the 13 hikes will earn a commemorative patch.

Here’s the schedule for Winter Hikes 2019:

  • Jan. 5 – Blacklick Woods, 10 a.m., 2 or 4 miles
  • Jan. 12 – Sharon Woods, 10 a.m., 2 or 4 miles
  • Jan. 13 – Prairie Oaks, 2 p.m., 1, 3 or 5 miles
  • Jan. 19 – Scioto Audubon, 10 a.m., 1 or 2 miles
  • Jan. 26 – Clear Creek, 10 a.m., 1, 3, or 5 miles
  • Jan. 27 – Inniswood, 2 p.m., 2 miles
  • Feb. 2 – Blendon Wood, 10 a.m., 2, 4 or 6 miles
  • Feb. 3 – Scioto Grove, 2 p.m., 1 or 2 miles
  • Feb. 9 – Highbanks 10 a.m., 2.5 or 5 miles
  • Feb. 10 – Glacier Ridge, 2 p.m., 2 miles
  • Feb. 16 – Three Creeks, 10 a.m., 1, 3 or 5.6 miles
  • Feb. 17 – Slate Run, 2 p.m. 2.5 or 5 miles
  • Feb. 23 – Battelle Darby Creek, 10 a.m., 2, 4 or 6 miles

Metro Parks also is using the series as a way to help the Mid-Ohio Foodbank. Hikers who donate four or more nonperishable food items (or $5 via credit card) will receive a Metro Parks mug. Donations can be made from 30 minutes before to 90 minutes after each event’s start time.

For more information, go to metroparks.net/blog/46th-annual-winter-hike-series.