Jefferson Lake State Park encompasses a total area of 962 acres of land near Steubenville city, the county seat of Jefferson County, Ohio. To get to the park simply travel 10 miles northwest of Steubenville which is in the east-central area of the state. The land acquisition where the park sits began in 1928. The dam along the creek started being developed in 1934 and water was allowed into the 17-acre lake in 1946. Jefferson Lake State Park was eventually established in 1950.
Historically, the Jefferson Lake region was the home of a famous Mingo chief whose family was massacred in the area near the Ohio River close to the mouth of Yellow Creek. The incident led to a war in 1774 that was later called the Lord Dunmore's War. Today, the park is one of Ohio’s quietest and out-of-the-way parks that is surrounded by Hickory and Oak wooded hills that create a private, peaceful, and scenic environment that can be enjoyed all year round.
The park’s topography today consists of valleys and hills that are the home for second growth Hickory and Oak Trees that form the most conspicuous part of the forested land at the park. You can also find several other plant species at the park including Tulip Trees, Beeches, Maples, Walnuts, Elms, Ashes, and many species of wildflowers. Additionally, you can find many wildlife species at the park including wild turkey and ruffed grouse among other birds.
Activities that can be enjoyed at the park include camping, fishing, boating, hiking, horseback riding, hunting, swimming, cross-country skiing, mountain biking, ice fishing, and ice skating. Amenities available to facilitate these activities include picnic areas and picnic shelters, game courts, swimming beach, boat ramps, bathhouse, showers, campsites, and multi-use trails.
You can also bring your dog to the park at no additional cost. If you choose to bring your dog, you must follow Ohio State Park rules that relate to pets/dogs including some of the following rules. First, you must prevent your dog from going into park buildings and into areas that are not designated as pet-friendly areas. Additionally, you must keep your dog on a leash no longer than six feet long at all times. If you choose to camp at the park, you must observe the two pet/dog per campsite rule.