Withrow Nature Preserve, located on the east side of Cincinnati along the Ohio River, is one of the calmest places in the Queen City to take in some fresh air and enjoy some nature.
Among the many characteristics of the preserve are 268 acres of forested land, a 1.6-mile nature trail, a modest wedding venue area, and a diverse range of species such as birds, foxes, and deer, raccoons, and opossums, among other creatures.
Situated on a hill on the edges of a heavily populated urban area, the construction of this historic site began in the early nineteenth century; the preserve is one of Cincinnati’s most tranquil and peaceful outdoor places, making it a great place to take a stroll in the woods or sit and enjoy the scenery.
Preserve’s History – A Brief Overview
It was Andrew Withrow and his wife Adelaide Withrow who lived on the ground where the Withrow Nature Preserve now stands, and they were the original owners of the property.
In 1937, they constructed a country home on the site, and they used the adjacent 128 acres of the forested hilltop to plant various gardens and nurture a wide range of wildflowers, which now provide stunning displays in the springtime.
Long before their marriage, the pair dreamed of turning their home and surrounding area into a natural preserve that the general public could visit and enjoy.
Following Mr. Withrow’s tragic death in 1964, Mrs. Withrow and Mr. Eugene R. Farny were married and lived peacefully on the land until 1980, when Mrs. Farney donated the property to the Hamilton County Park District, in accordance with plans established years earlier.
The Park District acquired additional paths and forested areas from an adjacent 140-acre parcel purchased by the district.
Today, the preserve comprises 268 acres of forested land, trails, and wildlife, all of these facilities are available to the general public for relaxation and enjoyment.
A Tour of the Preserve with Pictures
The 1.75-mile Trout Lily Nature route, formed of two hiking loops, is the crown gem of Withrow Nature Preserve. The first loop is a short walk in the woods, and the second is a long walk through the woods.
In addition to the Hepatica Hill Circle, there is a.25-mile loop that leads through an older forest region with a strong concentration of spring wildflowers.
An easy 1.75-mile loop takes you through various habitats, including open farmland, densely wooded regions, and an overlook location with stunning views of the Ohio River and the Kentucky hills in the distance.
Due to its dense forest and curving nature, the route is a favorite destination for residents who come to hike, bird watch, and walk their dogs. Even on the busiest days, though, it might feel like you’re all alone in the forest because of the dense forest and winding trail.
Because some sections of the trail are entirely dirt trails, while others are a little rockier, the scenery on the trail can change quickly.
There is a beautiful overlook around halfway through the path, which has some nice views in the distance and two wooden seats where you may relax and take in the scenery. It is located about halfway through the walk.
While the majority of the trail passes through a forested region, there is a section that loops across an open meadow near the beginning. This provides a pleasant change of view as well as the possibility to observe deer or other tiny creatures along the edge of the preserve’s perimeter.
Withrow Nature Preserve is the ideal location for anyone seeking to take a stroll through a lovely natural setting, engage in some bird-watching, or get away from the hustle and bustle of city life for a while.
Withrow Nature Preserve is Worth Visiting
The Withrow Nature Preserve is located at 7075 Five Mile Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45230, and is open all year. For more information, see their website. The preserve is open from dawn to sunset every day of the year.
A motor vehicle permit from the Great Parks of Hamilton County is required for admission. The cost of the permit is $10 for residents of Hamilton County and $16 for non-residents of the county. Visitors can purchase daily permits for $5 apiece at the park’s entrance booths for Hamilton County residents or $8 each if they are non-residents.
Keep an eye on the Great Parks of Hamilton County Calendar of Events to stay up to date on any forthcoming events taking place at Withrow Nature Preserve, as well as other great Hamilton County attractions.
Find more great nature oases in our Parks, Garden and Nature Centre Guide