I’ve visited Columbus a couple of times over the last few weeks and decided that I should find something outdoorsy to do. When I was a runner (getting back to it slowly), I ran along the Scioto River downtown and am amazed at the work that has been done there, replacing a stagnant ditch with a free-flowing water. This time I checked TripAdvisor and found Hayden Falls. The falls are located on the West side of the Scioto River, north of Columbus, west of the Griggs Reservoir bridge, near Hayden Run Road. The ravine habitat is one that occurs only along the western shore of the Scioto River, so it’s a cool surprise as you head down the stairs. While you have to stay on the boardwalk, apparently if you know what to look for you can see rare and endangered plants.
Short slideshow of the walkway to the falls:
Parking is in a small lot marked as the Griggs Nature Preserve, and Hayden Run is accessed via a staircase and boardwalk. While this infrastructure was built to protect the ravine ecosystem, it also means no more jumping from the falls (probably dangerous) or swimming in the pool below (bummer, but it could get pretty gross quickly). Also, though the boardwalk leads from the parking lot to the falls, there is no handicapped access due to the stairs being the only way down.
The walk to the falls and back doesn’t take long, maybe 10-15 minutes — I didn’t dally as there were quite a few people. At the parking lot there are a few picnic tables, so you could extend your time here with a meal.
While out of the way a bit, it’s a pretty drive and a cool place to visit. If you’re doing anything else in the Columbus area (like running), that would be an extra bonus.