Description - The wealth of natural wonders found at Mt Gilead State Park can be traced back to the Ice Age - a time when two-thirds of Ohio was frozen land covered with glacial ice, nearly a mile thick in places. During this age many changes occurred in the Ohio landscape leaving a legacy of valuable natural resources. A beautiful stand of second growth beech-maple forest exists at Mt. Gilead where wild geranium, hepatica, and trillium carpet the spring forest floor. The leafy canopy is occupied by the wood thrush, white-breasted nuthatch, Carolina wren and other songbirds.
Copyright: - Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Mt. Gilead State Park
- Mt. Gilead boasts a year-round scenic camping area set amid a pine forest. Facilities include fire rings, picnic tables, wastewater drains and latrines. Four Rent-A-Camp sites which provide a tent, dining canopy, cook stove, sleeping cots and other gear are available near the west end of the park for organized groups. Pet camping is permitted on designated sites.
Several picnic areas are located on the south side of the park. Three picnic shelters are available on a first-come, first-served basis or may be reserved for special occasions.
More than three miles of hiking trails explore Mt. Gilead State Park including Sam's Creek Self-guided Nature Trail that starts near the east end of the camping area. Trails provide opportunities for exercise, nature study and wildlife observation.
The two small lakes at Mt. Gilead offer good catches of bass, bluegill and other pan fish. A valid Ohio fishing license is required. Mt. Gilead allows boating with canoes, rowboats and boats with electric motors only. A launch ramp is provided.
Recreation - The 181-acre Mt. Gilead State Park offers fishing, hiking, picnicking, group picnicking, nature programs, boating, launch ramps, ice-skating, cross-country skiing, sledding, ice fishing, a variety of camping options including youth, pet and cabins.
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.
Located in central Ohio, Mt. Gilead is adjacent to the town bearing the same name. Marion, Ohio is a short distance west of the park.