Richwood, Ohio is 45 miles north of Columbus, near enough to have access to those big city creature comforts, but quiet and comfortable for small-town living in this rural part of the state. With a tightly-knit community and plenty of natural beauty, Richwood will make your pups feel right at home.
Richwood Lake Park gives your puppy pack an easy spot for a quick walk. With a makeover in 2018, the park is looking better than ever -- including the new walking trail by the lake. For more room to stretch, the Richwood Fairgrounds is nearby, or just scope out the downtown businesses from the sidewalks along Franklin Street. While you’re there, stop in and say hello to your friends at the animal clinic.
There are plenty of parks and nature preserves for any avid hikers in your pack, but if you really want a challenge, consider the 326-mile Ohio-to-Erie Trail, which runs within 35 miles of Richwood. Popular with bikers, the trail’s well-tended pathway is also easy on paws. As the name promises, you can follow it through some of Ohio’s loveliest scenery and all the way to Lake Erie, depending on your stamina and the length of your dogs’ legs.
Just six miles from Richwood, the small town of Prospect offers beautiful scenery along the Scioto River to enjoy on a walk with your fur family. The leafy Prospect Community Park has a wooded nature path and seasonal human bathrooms, plus sports fields, a playground, and friendly neighbors who may just want to join you for a frolic. Thanks to the good sidewalks and small-town safety, your pack can easily stroll through the quaint downtown to the Scioto River. Take a trip into the community’s past on the winding pathways of the historic Prospect Cemetery overlooking the river. Please remember waste bags and help keep these public areas clean.
Delaware State Park’s 1,600 acres of water and wilderness are just 15 miles from Richwood. Rent a canoe for your water dogs in summer, or hit the sledding hill with your snow dogs in winter. The park has five hiking/cross-country skiing trails, all rated "easy" and ranging from the quarter-mile Fisherman’s Trail to the 1.6-mile Lakeview Trail. The 1.5-mile Bigfoot Trail sounds pawticularly exciting. If your pups really want to get off-leash, though, head south toward downtown Delaware. The Mutt’s Paradise Amusemutt Park and Training Center offers a six-acre seasonal private park available for rent by the hour, perfect for shy or special needs dogs. And, the public 5-acre Delaware City Dog Park, with small and large dog enclosures, is just east of downtown.
Marion is 16 miles north of Richwood, and a great place for a doggy day out. Kauffman Dog Park at Kennedy Park has fenced, off-leash play areas with a water station, grassy lawns, and shady trees. There are 8 restaurants with dog-friendly outdoor seating in Marion, and the patio at TwentyNine Brew Pub is particularly inviting (maybe because of the not-quite-30 microbrews the pub keeps on tap). You’ll have plenty of opportunities to walk it off, particularly if you head to 83-acre Quarry Park on Hillman Park Rd, where the nature paths wind around a 23-acre lake. Please keep all pups on-leash, as the cliffs around portions of the lake can be dangerous.
A northern Columbus suburb, Marysville is 16 miles from Richwood. Head straight for the crescent of parks along the Mill Creek and catch the 3.4-mile Jim Simmons Memorial Trail at its northern trailhead. You can follow the trail down to Mill Valley Park, where you might stop and challenge Spot to some disc golf, then explore the woods on some of the branch trails as you continue on to Millcreek Park and Schwartzkopf Park. Not tired yet? If you cut down Elmwood Drive, you can pick up the multi-purpose loop trail at McCarthy Park. Maybe you’re tired but your pack is not? The Marysville Bark Park is just south of Schwarzkopf on the other bank of the creek, where you can sit on a bench and watch while your pups play off-leash.
The town of Kenton is a community of 9,000 dog-loving people and a commercial hub in this rural part of the state, about 17 miles from Richwood. The Kenton Bark Park is located in Wharton Park and offers two fenced areas for off-leash play. The park itself includes some additional on-leash lawn and walking areas surrounding the playground and picnic area. For a more dramatic kind of scenery, sniff out Saulisberry Park on France Lake, an old stone quarry. Now a pawpular fishing spot and a dog-friendly campground, the park also has nature trails and room to roam.