There's an adventure around every corner in our Metro Parks and summer is a perfect time to get outside and get active.
Metro Parks executive director John O’Meara says it's the natural terrain in the parks that attracts visitors. “Most people go to the ones close to their home, so the great news is there's some in the city (and in) all directions from the city.
He says Clear Creek Metro Park is well worth the trip out of the city to find a great hike. “(It has) great trails with good hills on them, so it's not just flat terrain,” O’Meara explains. “If you prefer flat, of course we have that too, but out here, you've got good hills, you've got up and down.”
At 450 feet of elevation, the Hemlock Trail at Clear Creek is most challenging. Hikers can put together a dozen or more miles on a trip outdoors.
At the opposite end of exertion are the Inniswood Metro Gardens. “It is a beautiful garden area. It's just a fantastic place to go stroll through the gardens, enjoy the beautiful manicured appearance,” says O’Meara. There’s just one way in and one parking lot. All trails begin in one central location. Also remember to take a camera with you because the flowers that are in bloom are breathtaking.
Visitors should be reminded that the area does not allow picnicking, or pets.
For runners, O’Meara recommends Highbanks Metro Park in Lewis Center. He encourages runners to take the Dripping Rock Trail from the nature center and connect to the Overlook Trail for about a 6-mile run. You may even get to spot eagles over the river.