(Last Updated On: January 16, 2023)
Lake at sunset at Barkcamp State Park

Lake at sunset at Barkcamp State Park. Photo: Bwsmith84, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Take a step back in time with a visit to Barkcamp State Park. This picturesque Ohio state park, located in Belmont County and just 78 miles west of Pittsburgh, PA, is one of the last undeveloped areas that really showcases the rustic Ohio landscape.

Lush forest, sandstone hills and wildflower meadows surround Belmont Lake offering guests opportunities to camp, hike, fish, swim, boat, picnic, and birdwatch.


Escape to the countryside for a few days of peace and quiet and maybe a few adventures. Bring your tent or RV and stay the night (or several) inside the park’s comfortable family campground. And don’t forget to bring lunch. There are picnic areas with tables and grills scattered throughout the park.

Here are a few more amenities that you will find inside Barkcamp State Park:

  • A walk through archery range with 3D targets
  • An accessible 18 hole mini golf course
  • A Nature Center with seasonal programs
  • Volleyball court
  • Basketball court

During the winter, provided the weather is cold enough, you may also get to enjoy activities such as cross-country skiing, ice skating, snowmobiling, and ice fishing.

Here are some of the many activities that you can do during your visit to Barkcamp State Park:

Boating at Barkcamp State Park

Canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, and other hand-powered boats are allowed on Belmont Lake. Boats with electric motors are also permitted and seasonal tie-ups are available. A kayak launch and a separate boat ramp for launching trailered boats are also available.

Swimming at Barkcamp State Park

Swim, float, sunbathe and more along the 700 foot lakeside beach located within Barkcamp State Park. Swimming is only allowed within the designated beach area. Swimming from your boat is not allowed.

Hiking at Barkcamp State Park

Take a walk through Barkcamp State Park and explore the miles of trails that lead throughout the lush forest and along the lake. Bring your camera and binoculars for a chance to see the native flora and fauna up close.

Here are a couple of the trails at Barkcamp State Park

  • Pioneer Trail – An easy 0.3 mile trail that winds through the forest and provides access to Pioneer village and the Antique Barn.
  • Storybook Trail – An easy 0.5 mile trail that presents a children’s story (broken into segments) along its path. The book changes throughout the year.

Guests are encouraged to take a book or leave a book in the Small Free Library located near the start of this trail. Check out other Storybook Trails located inside Ohio state parks.

Horseback Riding at Barkcamp State Park

Looking for a quiet place to ride your horse? Barkcamp State Park features 24 miles of bridle trails that extend throughout the park and loop around the lake. An equestrian campground and a day use area are also located within the park.

Fishing at Barkcamp State Park

Pack your angling gear and supplies and spend a quiet day fishing for trout, crappie, catfish, bass, and bluegill.

Fish from your boat or along the accessible fishing area near the park’s boat launch. Just don’t forget to pick up an Ohio fishing license ahead of time.

Birding at Barkcamp State Park

Grab your binoculars and take a peaceful walk through the woods inside Barkcamp State Park. Here you may discover Blue Jays, Red-headed Woodpeckers, Tufted Titmice, Carolina Chickadees, and Red-tailed Hawks.

Nature and Wildlife at Barkcamp State Park

Barkcamp Creek was once the site of a logging camp so named because of the process of removing the bark from felled trees before they were sent to the mill. Walking through the thick forest today it’s hard to imagine that this area was once stripped of so many of its trees.

Walk along these trails and you may also have a chance to see beautiful wild geraniums, bloodroot, and hepatica, as well as many songbirds, White-tailed deer, squirrels, raccoons, and opossum.

Pets at Barkcamp State Park

Pets are allowed at Barkcamp State Park but must be supervised and kept on a hand held leash that is no longer than 6 feet. Pets are not allowed inside park buildings (including cabins) or in the beach area.

Camping at Barkcamp State Park

Barkcamp State Park offers the following for overnight accommodations: campsites, Sherman Cabins, equestrian camping area, and a group camping area.

The main campground area offers 15 tent-only sites, 120 electric sites, and 15 full hookup sites. Each site has a picnic table, grill, and a fire ring. Bathhouses, a playground, mini golf course, and dump station are located nearby. Pets are allowed on certain sites, please inquire when making your reservation.

There are also 25 equestrian sites. These sites have access to electricity plus a horse washing station and an accessible mounting ramp.

The 4 Sherman Cabins have electricity but no water. Each cabin has beds, refrigerator, microwave, picnic table, grill and a fire ring. You will need to bring your own linens, dishes and utensils.

Park Location

Barkcamp State Park
65330 Barkcamp Park Rd
Belmont, OH 43718
Phone: 740.484.4064




Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Barkcamp State Park: