COLUMBUS: Overlook Trail, Highbanks Metro Park
Take this gravel and hardpack trail 2.3 miles to an observation deck 100 feet above the slow, snaking Olentangy River. "You'll climb steep grades through dense maple forest with rarely too many other hikers," says Kathy Lince, president of the YMCA Columbus hiking club.
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Access the Rim Trail or Gorge Trail from here.
Reach the rim
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After about a 200-foot gain, the trail level off atop the rim of the gorge.
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Gaze south and southwest. The gorge narrows to only about 100 feet wide at this point.
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Begin short descent back to parking area.
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Want more? Cruise the bottom of the gorge .5 mile (one way) to a waterfall.
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head uphill on the Rim Trail for a counter clockwise loop.