Stark Exploring Trail Challenge is Back!

Hiking on a wooded trailHike Your Way to a Free Hiking Stick and Shield

The leaves are turning, the air is brisk, and fall is popping up all around. This season, Stark Exploring is back and better! Take the challenge and experience autumn with Stark Parks. From September 1 to November 30, hike at least 15 of the select trails and get rewarded with a FREE hiking stick and shield! All mileage is based on the honor system. Bring in completed forms to the Exploration Gateway at Sippo Lake Park (5712 12th St. NW, Canton 44708).   The final day to turn in all forms is Dec. 30, 2019.   This program is open to all ages.  Hiking sticks and shields are available while supplies last.

Stark Exploring Passport (.pdf)

Helpful Information

Find more detailed directions and information about each location below.

  1. Congressman Ralph Regula Towpath Trail: St. Helena Heritage Park to Lock 4 Trailhead
    Parking: St. Helena Heritage Park, 125 Tuscarawas St, Canal Fulton 44614 (off of Cherry St.)
    Round Trip Mileage: 2 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Head south on the trail and look for the Ohio & Erie Canal Lock 4 gates or the red locktender’s house as the turnaround point.
  2. Congressman Ralph Regula Towpath Trail: Crystal Springs Trailhead to Butterbridge Rd.
    Parking: Crystal Springs Trailhead, 4503 Erie Ave. NW Massillon 44647 (north of High Mill Ave.)
    Round Trip Mileage: 5.08 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Cross the bridge from the parking lot and head north (right) on the trail.  There is a short climb up to the Butterbridge Rd. crossing.  Turn around there and head south.
  3. Congressman Ralph Regula Towpath Trail: Bridgeport Quarry to Lake Ave.
    Parking: Bridgeport Quarry Trailhead, 3455 Erie Ave. NW, Massillon 44646 (south of Traphagen St.)
    Round Trip Mileage: 3.12 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Turn south (left) on the trail from the parking lot and travel under Rt. 21 and Lake Ave.  Stop and shop at the Lake Ave. Trailhead before turning back.  Restrooms are located next to the building.
  4. Congressman Ralph Regula Towpath Trail: Canal Bend Trailhead to McDonnell Trailhead (Tuscarawas County)
    Parking: Canal Bend Trailhead, 6997 Dolphin St SW, Bolivar 44612
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.76 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Head north for a short distance before taking the sharp right bending to the east and up a steady climb along a farm field.  Cross Shepler Church Ave. and continue over the Tuscarawas River.  Appreciate the open rural views before turning around at the aqueduct bridge.
  5. Sandy Valley Trail
    Parking: 262 Maple St., Waynesburg 44688
    Round Trip Mileage: 1.52 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Head to the T in the trail from the parking lot and go left to turn around at West St. (west) and right (east) to walk to Greer Ave.
  6. Fichtner Trail (Loop Trail)
    Parking: 12833 Market Ave. N, Hartville 44632
    Round Trip Mileage: .39 mile
    Surface: Natural Surface/Mowed Grass
    Loop around this small park traveling through a wetland and a wooded area.  The back of the property provides access to the Hartville Marketplace and Comfort Inn and Suites, in case you are hungry or tired!
  7. Mahoning Valley Trail: Deer Creek Reservoir to Greenbower St.
    Parking: Deer Creek Reservoir, 14514 Price St. NE, Alliance 44601
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.24 miles
    Walk next to and over the reservoir before entering a short wooded section to Greenbower St. on a relatively flat section.
  8. Mahoning Valley Trail: Gaskill to Rockhill
    Parking: 182 E. Gaskill  St NE, Alliance 44601
    Round Trip Mileage: 3.86 miles
    Use the side of the road to cross the river and turn right to follow the limestone trail along the Mahoning River with a steady climb up to Rockhill Ave.  This section does flood after heavy rains and might be closed for several days.
  9. Petros Lake Park (Loop Trail)
    Parking: 3519 Perry Dr. SW, Canton 44706
    Round Trip Mileage: 1.22 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Enjoy several views of Petros Lake from different elevations.  Parking is available on Perry Dr.  A wooden bridge and occasional slopes are present on this route.
  10. Fry Family Park (South Trail)
    Parking: 2533 Farber St. SE, Magnolia
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.30 miles
    Surface: Mowed Grass
    Travel near the southern border of the park.  Park at the shelter and use the Sandy Valley Trail to connect to the South Trail.
  11. Quail Hollow Park (Choose Your Own Trail)
    Parking: 13480 Congress Lake Ave., Hartville 44632
    Round Trip Mileage: 2 miles on any trail of your choice.
    Surface: Natural Surface with a paved Nature for All Trail
    New signage has been installed on the Equestrian Trails and is in progress on the hiking and mountain biking trails.
  12. Quail Hollow Park
    Parking: Head left at the split in the parkway to the Pond/Shady Lane Parking area.
    Round Trip Mileage: Estimated 2 mile loop.
    Surface: Natural Surface with a paved Nature for All Trail.
    Follow the Stark Exploring signs from behind the pond on natural surface trails to the paved Nature for All Trail and back to the Shady Lane Parking Lot.
  13. Walborn Reservoir: Shoreline Trail
    Parking: 11324 Price St. NE, Alliance 44601
    Round Trip Mileage: 5.44 miles
    Surface: Natural Surface
    Begin behind the Walborn Reservoir Marina and follow the natural surface trail to Reeder Ave. and back.  Enjoy the views of the reservoir and a bridge and boardwalk crossing.
  14. Nickel Plate Trail: McKimm to End of Trail
    Parking: 2923 Pinevale Ave. NE, Louisville
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.16 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Head south from the parking lot on the crushed limestone trail heading up a slight incline, cross Georgetown Rd., and turn around at the fence where the trail ends.
  15. Hoover Trail: Washington Square Loop
    Parking: 1325 E. Maple St., North Canton 44720
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.28 miles 
     Limestone and sidewalk
    Begin at the Hoover Recreation Complex ballfields and head east (right).  After a short section on the neighborhood sidewalk, you will walk next to Starbucks Drive-Thru.  Turn right to use the sidewalk in front of Washington Square shopping to return to the E. Maple St. Trailhead.
  16. Middle Branch Trail: Schneider Loop to 55th St.
    Parking: Veterans Community Park, 1714 Schneider St., Canton 44714
    Round Trip Mileage: 1.76 miles
    Take a walk around the park on a 1.04 mile limestone loop trail with several inclines then take the southern route along the railroad tracks to 55th St. before turning around.
  17. Sippo Lake Park: Sippo Lake Trail
    Parking: 5300 Tyner St., Canton 44708
    Round Trip Mileage: 2 miles
    Surface: Limestone
    Follow the limestone trail to the Exploration Gateway Shelter and Playground and back.  Restrooms and buildings open during the day.
  18. Sippo Lake Park: Marina Loop Trail
    Parking: 5300 Tyner St., Canton 44708
    Round Trip Mileage: .59 mile
    Surface: Natural Surface
    Enjoy the ups and downs with an occasional view of Sippo Lake on the south side of the parking lot.  Start by walking up the grass hill near the park entrance.
  19. Pioneer Trail
    Parking: Weis Park, 2600 Harvard Ave. NW, Canton 44709
    Round Trip Mileage: 2.68 miles
    Surface: Limestone, concrete, and asphalt
    Explore a popular area in Canton and Malone University from Cleveland Ave. to Market Ave. on this up and down limestone trail.  The parking area is near the midpoint of the trail, so you will pass your car after turning around at Cleveland Ave. and Market Ave.
  20. Iron Horse Trail: W. Beech St. to Bayton St.
    Parking: First Christian Church Trailhead, 1141 W. Beech St. Alliance 44601
    Round Trip Mileage: 3.74 miles
    Head down the trail from the parking lot near the picnic shelter.  Turn left to travel south on the former railroad route.  You will cross Beechwood Ave. and Beech St. before a scenic stretch to Bayton St., the turn around point.