Description - Dillon State Park in Muskingum County is situated in an area of the state that possesses diverse and unique natural features. One of which is the presence of the Black Hand Sandstone. Sand, eroded hundreds of millions of years ago from mountains farther east, accumulated in a vast delta in the sea covering the region. This hard bedrock erodes to form sheer cliffs and supports a lush, hardwood forest.
Copyright: Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Dillon State Park
The rolling, reverting farmland of the Dillon area provides visitors the opportunity to see some of Ohio's most magnificent wildlife. White-tailed deer, ruffed grouse and wild turkey can be seen by quiet observers. During migration, numerous species of waterfowl visit Dillon's waters. Most recently, sightings of bald eagles have been reported.
- Dillon State Park was dedicated in August 1968 as the result of flood control construction by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The lake is the cornerstone to many of the park's recreations.
There are 29 family cottages nestled in the woods overlooking the north lakeshore. Each cottage has air conditioning, color cable television, gas heat, two bedrooms, bath, living room with sofa bed, all-electric kitchen, dining area and screened porch. Linens, towels and kitchen utensils are furnished. There are 195 campsites for tents or trailers. Of these, 183 have electric. The non-electric sites are walk-in offering excellent primitive camping. The campground is equipped with flush toilets, showers and a dump station. A commissary with grocery items and laundromat is located near the check-in station.
Boating with unlimited horsepower is permitted at Dillon. Four boat ramps are provided for access to the lake. A boat concession offers boat and motor rental, fuel, fishing and boating supplies, and a variety of snacks. Seventy docks are available for rent on a seasonal basis. An excellent 1,360-foot swimming beach is located near the park office. Facilities include a bathhouse, showers, lockers, snack bar and a wading pool for children. A game area is adjacent to the beach offering tennis, horseshoe, paddleball, volleyball, basketball and shuffleboard as well as a playground area. Anglers are typically not disappointed at Dillon State Park. Largemouth and smallmouth bass, muskie, bluegill, crappie and catfish are plentiful.
Hunting is a popular recreation as well. Shotgun or longbow is only permitted in season and in designated areas. Duck blind permits are available through the park office. A valid Ohio hunting and / or fishing license is required.
Visitors who enjoy nature study will find that Dillon's trails are pathways to discovery. The Ruffed Grouse Nature Trail is approximately 0.75-mile long and introduces the hiker to the varied habitats of the area. This trial is a branch of the 6-mile long Licking Bend Trail that skirts the lakeshore. Three other fascinating trails include Blackberry Ridge Trail (1 mile), King Ridge Loop (1.1 miles) and Hickory Grove Loop (1.5 miles) are located very near the camping and cottage area.
Picnic areas complete with tables and grills are located at many pleasant and scenic spots throughout the park. Two shelters available on a first-come, first-served basis, are located at the overlook area and beach. A boater's picnic area with well water and vault-type latrines is located on the lake.
A highlight of the park is the sportsmen's area. This modern facility includes lighted trap and skeet fields with high, low, and combination houses, a 100-yard rifle range and 25-yard pistol range with firing line shelter and tables. Restrooms and meeting space are located indoors. These facilities lend themselves to weapons instruction, hunter safety classes, shooting meets and individual practice. Call the park office for details.
Recreation - Dillon State Park offers the visitor an array of attractions including camping, cottages, boating, fishing, lake swimming, children's wading pool, tennis, paddleball, volleyball, basketball, shuffleboard, playground, hunting, hiking, bird watching, picnicking, and target practice.
Climate - This state has four distinct seasons and a brilliant fall foliage display in it southern woods during mid October. Winter lasts from December through February with average temperatures near 25 degrees F. Low temperatures dip to single digits, but do not often drop below zero. Northern regions of the state receive average snowfall amounts of 55 inches, while the central and southern regions of the state receive lesser amounts with averages near 30 inches. This difference is caused by lake-affect moisture patterns.
Spring temperatures begin to warm the landscapes of Ohio by mid March and are in full swing by April. Temperatures range from 40 through 70 degrees F through the spring months. This season often brings the most rainfall, before the drying heat of summer. Summer can be extremely hot and humid in the interior of Ohio. Temperatures reach above 90 degrees F frequently through July and August. Cooler fall temperatures don't reach the region until mid to late September. This is a pleasant time to visit as the air is crisp with low humidity levels. Ohio's annual precipitation usually reaches slightly above 50 inches.
Dillon State Park is located in Muckingum County, south of Coshocton. The park may be accessed from State Route 146.