Bicycle riding may be enjoyed on the Loop Trail at Riverbend Recreation Area. Riverside Park, and River Landings provide access to the Blanchard River Greenway Trail.
Discover the joys of birding in Northwest Ohio throughout the Hancock Park System. In addition to providing great exercise, birding is a relaxing, inexpensive way to spend time outdoors with family and friends.
The Hancock Park District has an ongoing Bird Monitoring project. All skill levels are welcome; first-time birders can learn about birds or veteran bird watchers can become better at identifying their feathered friends. This hands-on, in-the-field approach to monitoring environmental changes is one of the ways volunteers experience a wide range of physical and mental activities.
Blanchard River Water Trail
The 37.6-mile Blanchard River Water Trail is predominately a rural waterway that affords relative isolation and solitude. It is characterized by bends, riffles, and forested riverbanks. The urban section flows through Findlay, Ohio. Numerous access points along the way provide a wide range of boating opportunities from short trips lasting an hour or two to half-day and day trips to a two-day trip with primitive tent camping along the Blanchard River at Riverbend Recreation Area. The Blanchard River Water Trail begins at Blanchard River Nature Preserve and ends at Blanchard Landing.
Waterless restrooms and a drinking fountain are available in the Big Oaks Activity Area. All potable and non-potable water is available on a seasonal basis only. Rental is $15 per site, per night, with eight people per campsite. The cost to reserve the entire campground for camping or special events is $60
Canoeing & Kayaking
The Hancock Park District facilitates float trips on the Blanchard River from April through June when conditions are favorable and at other times when sufficient rainfall increases water level and improves navigability. A variety of services are offered: Self-Guided Float Trips with Shuttle Service, Canoe Instructional Courses, Self-Guided Fall Float Trips, Daily Boat Rentals, Group Boat Rentals, and Guided Float Trips upon request.
Cross-Country Ski & Snowshoe
As part of our Leisure Education Initiative, the Hancock Park District conducts Beginner Cross-country Ski Workshops that cover the basic fundamentals, including proper use of equipment and how to glide, climb hills, stand up on skis, turn around, and get into the rhythm. Workshops are subject to proper snow and weather conditions.
Hancock Park District’s Leisure Education Initiative involves a series of outdoor recreation skills instructional courses that introduce outdoor recreation activities, teach fundamental skills and encourage participation in outdoor recreation over the course of a lifetime.
Raccoon Run Winter Sports Center, located at Riverbend Recreation Area in Shelter 3, rents cross-country skis and snowshoes during good weather and snow conditions, weekends and holidays. Group outings can be arranged, for times other than public openings, through the Hancock Park District Administrative Office.
Young anglers can try their luck as the Hancock Park District hosts an Annual Fish Festival in the spring. Trout are stocked prior to the festival courtesy of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Division. Children must do the fishing, but limited adult assistance is permitted. All state fishing rules and regulations apply. The Fish Festival is held rain or shine, except in the event of extreme weather conditions.
Hiking & Walking
The Hancock Park District has a variety of trails for walking and hiking located throughout the Hancock Park System.
Additional information about the Hunting-with-Permission Lottery program can be obtained by contacting the Hancock Park District at 419-425-7275.
Geocaching & Letterboxing
Park visitors are welcome to participate in “Geocaching” and “Letter Boxing” activities in the Hancock Park District. A permit/application form is now required to hide a cache in any HPD park area in order to limit the impact on native plants and animals in certain management areas.
Old Millstream Scenic Byway
Sawmills, gristmills, and waterpower shaped a region for Native Americans and settlers and carved an area out of the Ohio wilderness bounded by rivers and the Great Black Swamp. As history tells it, the earliest known settler of Hancock County was a Frenchman by the name of Jean Jacques Blanchard who arrived in 1769. In 1908, William “Tell” Taylor wrote “Down by the Old Mill Stream” while sitting on the banks of the Blanchard River. Life prospered from the river, villages and cities grew, and transportation moved people and goods to build the economy. Today, the Old Mill Stream Scenic Byway extends 52 miles through Hancock and Putnam counties, while showcasing the Blanchard River, natural resources, and parks and recreation with a nice blend of cultural and historic attractions along the way.
Zonta Landing Boat Rentals
The standard boat rental fee is $5 per ½ hour for canoes, kayaks, and pedal boats. The Special Float Trip Option is $20 per canoe, $20 per tandem kayak, or $10 per solo kayak for approximately two hours. Float trips begin and end at Zonta Landing. Boating is limited to an area upstream past the Country Club golf course, Eastpoint Area, and Vogelsong Conservation Area to the State Route 568/Sandusky Street Bridge and back.