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Ohio’s Kelley Island State Park is on an island in Lake Erie. It is one of the 5 Lake Erie island state parks. The islands were formed during the glacial period when massive ice sheets the area. Glaciers gouged the bedrock and their tremendous weight left deep depressions which filled with water as the ice melted, forming the Great Lakes.
The Glacial Grooves State Memorial has the largest such grooves in the world. From a footbridge, walkway and stairs, visitors can look down on these immense grooves. They are 400 feet long, 135 feet wide and up to 10 feet deep, demonstrating the tremendous power of the ice that formed them.
Glacial Grooves Geological Preserve contains marine fossils that are 350-400 million years old. They were scoured into solid limestone bedrock about 180,000 years ago by that great sheet of ice.
“…fascinating to see the trail left by the glaciers and grateful…they have been recovered and preserved.”
“…glacial grooves were very cool, something unusual to see…”
“…one of the unique formations we have seen…easy to find and access. No hiking to get to it.”
There are two nature preserves on the island, North Pond Nature Preserve and the North Shore Nature Preserve. Take advantage of them to see native wildlife, including deer, raccoons, white-footed mice, Lake Eric water snake, monarch butterflies, fox snake and much more.
Limestone cliffs and crystal caves greet visitors to the park. There are 6 miles of hiking trails leading to scenic vistas.
The park features picnic areas, a picnic shelter and a 100 foot swimming beach. There are boat ramps. Water activities include sailing, power boating, water tubing, canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling and scuba diving on near by ship wrecks. Click here to find out how to save money on water tubes.
Lake Erie has high nutrient levels and warm temperatures which produce greater numbers and variety of fish than any of the other Great Lakes. Annual catches in Lake Erie almost equal the combined catches of all the other Great Lakes.
There are fishing access areas. Anglers enjoy fishing for walleye, smallmouth bass, channel catfish, yellow perch and white bass. You can save on rod and reels by clicking here.
Kelleys Island State Park has 45 non-electrical and 84 electrical campsites. The campground has showers, bathrooms, a volleyball court and playground. Pet camping is permitted on designated sites.
If you’re interested in renting an RV, Green Vacation Deals recommends RVshare.
Kelleys Island can be reached by ferry from Sandusky or Marblehead Peninsula.