If Sarah and I hadn’t made such a big dent in the 59 National Parks last year, we probably wouldn’t have made the extra effort to go to Cuyahoga Valley. It’s a pretty park but it seems like it’s trying to do too much to the detriment of having a real identity. Part of that may be due to the fact that it’s a somewhat linear park centered on the Ohio and Erie Canal and the scenic railroad but I think the bigger problem is that it lacks adequate way finding and storytelling. I’m sure part of the problem was my navigation skills but it was very frustrating trying to get around to see the “marquee” sites. While there are two main roads that constitute the park’s spine, there aren’t many directional signs on those roads. If you can figure out your first turn off the road, then there are signs to the destinations. Unlike the NPS to have such lousy way finding. On the other hand, the park is a great resource if you live in Cleveland or Akron since it connects the two communities with both the Towpath Trail (bike and pedestrian) and the scenic railroad. Great day trip from either city.
Sarah and I enjoyed a couple of short hikes to Brandywine Falls and Blue Hen Falls and wandered through The Ledges. The rock outcroppings were very reminiscent of Missouri. Found a friend on one of the paths.