Description - The spectacular rock formations at Nelson-Kennedy Ledges have become trademarks of the park. These rock formations are among the few outcrops in northern Ohio still exposed to view. The jumbled rocks and shaded rock faces are home to a wide variety of wildflowers, trees and ferns. The spring wildflower show includes spring beauties, hepatica and the rare red trillium. Tree species more common in cooler climates include yellow birch, Canadian hemlock and Canada yew. In the shelter of the roots and shaded by the leafy canopy above, ferns such as the Christmas and maidenhair fern grow in abundance. Others such as the marginal shield fern, grape fern, wood fern and common polypody are more unusual for this part of the state.
Copyright: Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park
- The Nelson-Kennedy region has always been a popular vacation spot and eventually came under state protection. In 1940, the state purchased land at Nelson Ledges, and in 1948, it bought 101 acres of the area known as Kennedy Ledges.
Hikers will enjoy the several trails that wander through the Nelson Ledges to formations like Devil's Icebox, Indian Pass and Old Maid's Kitchen. All visitors are urged to exercise caution while hiking and are advised to restrict their travel to established trails only. Park rules prohibit off-trail hiking and beverage containers on hiking trails.
The park provides excellent sites for picnics. Tables and grills are provided.
Recreation - Recreation at Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park is limited to picnicking, 3 miles of trails, viewing rock formations and unusual plant life.
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.
Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park is accessible off State Route 282, south of Parkman, Ohio.